Pak Lah’s 5 famous sayings/pledges first 10 days as PM – all broken/dishonoured

The front-page headline of the mainstream media yesterday was on the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi’s speech at the Gerakan-MCA joint Chinese New Year open house in Penang on the first day of the Chinese New Year of the Rat, viz:

“LISTEN – Heed what the people say and correct your mistakes”New Straits Times;

“Listen …Hear out the people and correct mistakes, PM tell leaders”The Star; and

“Dengar masalah rakyat – Arahan Perdana Menteri kepada pemimpin BN supaya terus dapat sokongan”Utusan Malaysia.

Which Gerakan or MCA national leader present at the Gerakan-MCA joint Chinese New Year open house would have dared tell or just whispered to Abdullah that it was the Prime Minister himself who needed such advice most!

Let me here tell the Prime Minister what Tan Sri Dr. Koh Tsu Koon, Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting and no Gerakan or MCA leader dare to say – Pak Lah, you are the one who need most to heed the advice to listen to the people, which you promised to do when you first became Prime Minister more than 51 months ago but have failed to honour!

This was one of the five famous sayings of Abdullah in his first 10 days as the fifth Prime Minister of Malaysia in November 2003 which completely swept Malaysians off their feet and gave him the unprecedented landslide general election victory in March 2004, achieving what no other Prime Minister had ever done – crushing the Opposition and winning over 91 per cent of the parliamentary seats!

Malaysians will never forget the five famous pledges of Abdullah in his first 10 days as Prime Minister in November 2003, viz:

• “Work with me and not for me” –1.11.03

• “I will work very hard” – 1.11.03

• “I’ll serve with integrity, efficiency and fairness” – in Parliament 3.11.03

• “Top two issues – Government to focus on education and corruption” – 7.11.03

• “Tell me the truth” – 9.11.03.

Something is very wrong when a Prime Minister at the end of his first term in office had to plead publicly: “I work very hard. I really mean it and you know it.”

The press reported that when Abdullah said this, he was greeted with applause from those who attended the Chinese Assembly Hall’s Chinese New Year Open House. But how many of those who politely applauded him believed him?

No one would have imagined that Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad would ever have to make such a declaration at any stage of his 22-year premiership that he had to work very hard – whether one agrees with his policies and actions or not. This had not happened to previous Prime Ministers. Why is it necessary for Abdullah to plead that he is hard-working after four years as Prime Minister?

Before Abdullah asks other Barisan Nasional leaders to conduct a self-examinination of their performance, Abdullah should do it to himself. I believe I dare say without contradiction that for the past full year of parliamentary meeting from March last year, Abdullah would have gone down in history as the Prime Minister who had the least parliamentary attendance of any Prime Minister in the 50-year history of Parliament although he holds the most number of Ministerial portfolios!

Similarly, before Abdullah could credibly ask other Barisan Nasional leaders to “listen” and heed what the people say to correct their mistakes, he must himself set a good example. Abdullah has said that he has “Big Ears” but his “Big Ears” have not ensured that his famous saying, “Tell me the truth” is taken seriously in Cabinet, Barisan Nasional or the Malaysian press – or the country would not have been plagued with so many nation-building, political, economic, educational, social, cultural and religious problems.

This is not the time to assess in detail Abdullah’s five famous sayings and pledges made in his first 10 days as Prime Minister. Suffice it to say that Abdullah has broken and dishonoured everyone of them – aided and abetted by the entire Cabinet (rightly dismissed as “half-past six” Cabinet by Tun Mahathir) and Barisan Nasional leadership.

The Prime Minister must rightly be reminded of his five famous sayings and pledges – a task which could not be performed by any Umno, MCA, Gerakan, MIC, SUPP or any Barisan Nasional leader. This is what the DAP and Malaysian voters must do, forthrightly, vigorously and critically, in the 12th general election campaign

(Speech g at the Penang DAP Open House at Cheah Association, Penang on Sunday, 10th February 2008 at 11 am)

  1. #1 by voice on Sunday, 10 February 2008 - 3:59 pm

    “I work very hard. I really mean it and you know it.”
    Work done = Force x Distance
    where everyone can see it.
    not Talk x Talk

  2. #2 by raven77 on Sunday, 10 February 2008 - 4:09 pm

    Is it true the PM’s crony has already sold University Malaya…..hope this is not a last minute steal….

  3. #3 by Cinapek on Sunday, 10 February 2008 - 5:15 pm

    The fact the man had to tell people himself that he is actually working hard says it all. It is pathetic because he knows that people knows he is not working and as such had to desperately make such statements for his own convictions, or whatever is left of it.

    A man who made 88 trips abroad in 48 months could not have achieved very much work. The results confirms this. And a man who would rather spend his time on a sailing holiday in Australia hobnobbing with the rich and famous while his country and his people are flooded out of their homes could not be a very concientious or hardworking leader. Contrast that with China’s Wen Jiabao who was in the thick of relief work during the recent winter storm crisis in China.

    Yes, and with a penchant for falling asleep frequently, it stands to reason that even when he is back, adjusting to the jet lag and time zone changes would cause him to be sleeping more than working. And just when he may have adjusted, he is off again. A new travelling toy in the form of the new PM jet is a strong encouragement to travel more frequently.

  4. #4 by sheriff singh on Sunday, 10 February 2008 - 5:27 pm

    “Dishonour” is a very powerful word.

    Many cannot live with shame, like in Japan. You know what they do then.

    But our leaders take it as a badge of pride. And many unashamedly wants a piece of the action and are given a share. Thats why we rot.

  5. #5 by hiro on Sunday, 10 February 2008 - 5:58 pm

    I hate to say this, but many Malaysian bought what he said. And they deserve the incompetent, corrupt government that they get. Sometimes, I feel that Malaysia is just not ready for an ideal democratic push.. it could be the fengshui of the nation, too much inertia and a propensity to avoid drastic changes. And of course, there’s also that part about a compliant press. But ideas do go around, so all Malaysians should know what it means to give BN 2/3 majority… yet why would they continue to do it? Perhaps we need a cause – the mother of all scandals, for people to really see what BN is – an outmoded, corrupt fat cat out to devour all of us little busy rats trying to survive the daily rat race.

  6. #6 by dawsheng on Sunday, 10 February 2008 - 6:19 pm

    Something is very wrong when a Prime Minister at the end of his first term in office had to plead publicly: “I work very hard. I really mean it and you know it.”

    Puzzling isn’t it, the “I really mean it” part? If he said “I work very hard and you know it” it will be more straight forward and much more convincing. I think what is wrong here was Abdullah tried hard to convince himself to lie to himself so that he can lie to the people at the dinner where everyone knew he was a liar anyway. “If people tell you I am not working, you know they are lying” will be a better lie I guess.

  7. #7 by bennylohstocks on Sunday, 10 February 2008 - 6:34 pm

  8. #8 by dawsheng on Sunday, 10 February 2008 - 6:44 pm

    A man says that he is lying. Is what he says true or false?

  9. #9 by dawsheng on Sunday, 10 February 2008 - 6:48 pm

    But what if a liar says that he is telling the truth, is what he says true or false?

  10. #10 by mendela on Sunday, 10 February 2008 - 7:25 pm

    I saw in TV the live telecasts of fierce Japanese Paliamentary debates between Japan PM Fukuda and the Opposition party leaders.

    The debates were of highest quality and were back up with real facts and data.

    In Malaysia, how many Parliament sessions had the laziest PM of all time attnded?

    As I had said many times before, this PM is not only an airhead, he is [deleted] lazy too. Ask him how many books had he read the past 4 years?

  11. #11 by firstMalaysian on Sunday, 10 February 2008 - 9:00 pm

    In January 2006, nine cabinet ministers (non-muslim) submitted a memorandum to PM to review Article 121(1A) of the federal Constitution which states that civil courts ‘ shall have no jurisdiction in respect of any matter within the jurisdiction of Syariah courts’

    The PM on January 21st 2006 maintained that the piece of legislation did not require any amendment. Following that, the ministers (except one) retracted the memorandum. These MCA/MIC/Gerakan ministers should explain why there is no conviction and political will to seek reform. How can we trust them for the next term?

  12. #12 by ihavesomethingtosay on Sunday, 10 February 2008 - 9:38 pm

    I have BIG EARS……………………… :D

    If government changes, will future Malaysian be forever refer to the last four years as “PHAKLAH HONEYMOON”? “DREAMTIME”?

  13. #13 by Saint on Sunday, 10 February 2008 - 10:16 pm

    Saudara Lim, It is best we talk less about this and concentrate on more important and urgent matters like organizing volunteers to take care of ballot boxes and assisting in campaigning and fund raising.

  14. #14 by ihavesomethingtosay on Sunday, 10 February 2008 - 10:21 pm


    Hang on a minute……………… before you all come and shoot me, give em a moment to present my point.

    In Life, we often learn that asking improper question or not paying attention will get you into problem and not reading the small prints will means that your lawyer never screw you up but it is you who screws yourself.

    let’s reflect……..

    • “Work with me and not for me” –1.11.03
    small prints says “but work for KJ, Work for my new Jet/s, work for my new Yaught, My New Mansion and My “The Emperor” is ok, work through your nose, is ok, just don’t work for me alone.”

    • “I will work very hard” – 1.11.03
    small prints says ” I will even work hard when asleep”

    • “I’ll serve with integrity, efficiency and fairness” – in Parliament 3.11.03
    small prints says “for a list of definitions on INTEGRITY, EFFICIENCY and FAINESS, please refer to Barisan Najis’ Handbook”

    • “Top two issues – Government to focus on education and corruption” – 7.11.03
    small prints says “Corruption is very hard to fight, education is not necessary as our grand plan of 2057 is to have our elite class of Rempits and exporting Malaysians as maids to work oversea. AND as USUAL, we will be focusing “yes I can see that, means, I am focus””

    • “Tell me the truth” – 9.11.03.
    small prints says “You can tell me the truth, but I didn’t say I wish to hear the truth, nor did I ever promise not to lock you up for telling me the truth; so thread lightly, and at your own risk.”

    See, Pak Lah did kept his promise afterall, and we are the stupid ones who buy his promises in the first place, it’s just like buying an electronic appliancesand don’t read the guarentees, if it doesn’t work is not the fault of anyone but yourself. and serves you right for buying from the manufacturer who in fact feels that they had delivery something to you as shown on box even if it doesn’t work.

    hmmm, vote for BN, understand the small prints next time.

    But fundamentally, any vote for any TOM DICK and HARRY is sure a better bet than the likes of BUNG-n-SAID, KJ, KErismuddin, NAJIS, OrKWEETAO, GOONSUKOON, SEMIVALUE.

    Bottomline, stupid Rakyat got what they deserve.

  15. #15 by U32 on Sunday, 10 February 2008 - 10:39 pm

    There are people who are more serious in their work. How come lazy people can be given an excellence award ? This is the truth, Mr. Prime Minister. Do you listen ? And there are many, many, many out there who are in similar situations. So tell me, how good are the report cards before you ? How do you know that you can trust those report cards ? You are not around to see how your people work. So can you be so sure that the candidates you choose for election based on their report cards are really that good ? Samy Vellu is doing his job. But how come there is a Hindraf rally ? How come a Barisan Nasional member got shot in Johore ?

  16. #16 by cheng on soo on Sunday, 10 February 2008 - 10:58 pm

    88 oversea trip in 51 months??, means average interval between trips is less than 18 days! (if every oversea trip is only 1 day away).
    So, how can this guy said he work very hard?? Perhaps he works very hard via internet?? Where is he when, floods hit the nation??Only a fools would believe his stories

  17. #17 by justice_fighter on Monday, 11 February 2008 - 12:03 am

    Badawi promises us everything yet he accomplishes nothing. Here is a “leader” who acts not on the basis of firm convictions or set of well founded beliefs, but out of expediency and duplicity. His 4 year rule— he is now desparately pleading to be given another 5 years to complete his mission— is a story of mismanagement of the economy, poor public service performance, rampant corruption, rising crime rate and unemployment, inflation, wasteful public expenditure and a judicial scandal. It will be a major catastrophe if voters are again deceived by Badawi’s promises. – By Din Merican

  18. #18 by justice_fighter on Monday, 11 February 2008 - 12:06 am

    It’s a complete waste of time to listen to what Pak Lah said and will say. This hypocrite only talks nonsense and lies.

    No doubt that he works VERY HARD, not to serve the nation, but to enrich his family and cronies’ businesses!!

  19. #19 by kaybeegee on Monday, 11 February 2008 - 2:16 am

    Work with me and not for me. Meant for SIL
    I will work very hard (for you SIL)
    I will serve with integrity and fairness…..for you SIL and to you my children.
    Top two issues Government will focus on and corruption.
    he did not say wipe out corruption did he? Education must mean for benefit of Malays only.
    tell me the truth (SIL what else can I give you and your brother in law?)

  20. #20 by undergrad2 on Monday, 11 February 2008 - 4:25 am

    This Prime Minister reminds me of the Three Wise Monkeys: I see nothing. I hear nothing. I say nothing (?).

  21. #21 by Jimm on Monday, 11 February 2008 - 8:50 am

    One thing good about AAB, he is really showing how Malaysian real behavior and character are after all … especially his own kind.
    When everything not wroking accordingly, leave the blame to Allah.
    And when others are cornering us, go amok
    Malaysia Boleh

  22. #22 by Bigjoe on Monday, 11 February 2008 - 9:17 am

    When I first read this ‘hear & correct’ speech, frankly I was confused. What was he trying to say? Is he blaming the issues on elected rep NOT being responsible? If so, why the hell has he NOT done anything about it including backing out of the IPCMC, let loose a proper RCI on the entire judiciary, stop saying Malaysia is NOT a secular state, etc. Why is the likes of Mat Deros, Mohd Yusof, Bung Mochtar, Rafidah, Samy Vellu still around? Why is no one being hung to dry for PKFZ, Naval boat, Altantuya murder etc.?

    I frankly don’t get it. If he don’t listen to people and he instead tell the reps to listen to people, isn’t it confusing and worst? The reps are going to sit on their ass and test the waters with more war-lording ways before anything will change.

    So what the hell is he trying to do? As a cover up for his poor performance, its a lousy idea either. Its just confusing and unbelievable.

    Is he just freaking lost????

  23. #23 by Malaysian citizen on Monday, 11 February 2008 - 12:14 pm

    For all the non-Malays in Malaysia , there are about 40% of you here , let us not vote ourselves to be a 2nd class citizens in Malaysia.

    Please go and find out more about the NEP which has taken away all your rights as a Malaysian citizens since 1970.

    Don’t be a naive voter , vote for your children’s future.

  24. #24 by ktteokt on Monday, 11 February 2008 - 9:22 pm

    AAB was too busy courting Jean before his wife’s demise and after his wife’s demise, he got married to Jean. He is now honeymooning with Jean, so where has he the time to take care of national problems! Might as well retire and let someone capable and interested take care of the position of PM.

  25. #25 by BlackEye on Monday, 11 February 2008 - 10:35 pm

    Unless he is Chairman of M’sia Inc. and not its CEO. The CEO as we know is Najib.

  26. #26 by scorpian6666 on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 11:20 am

    Grab as much as you could while still in Office.. very typical of a loser

  27. #27 by wizzerd on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 12:10 pm

    His 4 year rule— he is now desparately pleading to be given another 5 years to complete his mission— is a story of mismanagement of the economy, poor public service performance, rampant corruption, rising crime rate and unemployment, inflation, wasteful public expenditure and a judicial scandal. It will be a major catastrophe if voters are again deceived by Badawi’s promises. – By Din Merican

    Having completed his 4-year rule, he is pleading for more time because he has not done anything worthwhile.
    I bet he is gonna say he is still warming up and all of us should be patient..
    If he is given another mandate, he is going to ask for more time to see his projects out. ..and it goes on and on…So it never ends.
    the best excuse for non-performance is not enough time to carry out development, how convenient can that be to cover up for his incompetence.

  28. #28 by choonchoy on Tuesday, 12 February 2008 - 11:19 pm

    “LISTEN – Heed what the people say and correct your mistakes” – New Straits Times;

    “Listen …Hear out the people and correct mistakes, PM tell leaders” – The Star; and

    “Dengar masalah rakyat – Arahan Perdana Menteri kepada pemimpin BN supaya terus dapat sokongan” – Utusan Malaysia.

    • “Work with me and not for me” –1.11.03

    • “I will work very hard” – 1.11.03

    • “I’ll serve with integrity, efficiency and fairness” – in Parliament 3.11.03

    • “Top two issues – Government to focus on education and corruption” – 7.11.03

    • “Tell me the truth” – 9.11.03.

    Hahahaha. LMFAO. Wish Reno and Letterman were here.

  29. #29 by Evenmind on Wednesday, 13 February 2008 - 10:22 am

    Nothing ever that’s mentioined , that is ever gonna be fulfliied, read the following, for UMNO or BN for that matter its all about race politics that matter, to keep them afloat , and hopefully the public by now ‘ll be very much advanced in thier thinking, life in Malaysia is more than bumi /bukan bumi or islam bukan islam.

    This is a fwd I would like very much to share. Ahmad Mustapha incidentally is my contemporary and we were together at the University of Malaya in Singapore in the late 50’s. His last appointment as I’d recall was political secretary to the then PM, Tun Mahathir. Enjoy.


    Why look East to Japan for good governance when Singapore is just next door? Answer: Because Malaysia does not wish to ‘kalah bulu’ without realising that it is already more than ‘kalah bulu’!

    At 84, the fire still burns!
    By Ahmad Mustapha

    Singapore’s Minister Mentor, Lee Kuan Yew, who was Singapore’s founding father, has always been very direct in his comments. This was the man who outsmarted the communists in Singapore (with the innocent help of Malaya then and the willing help of the British) and who later outwitted the British and outpaced Malaysia in all spheres.

    Singapore practices corrupt-free meritocracy and Malaysia affirmative action. The former attracted all the best brains and the latter chased out all the brains. The Singapore cabinet consists of dedicated and intelligent technocrats whereas Malaysia has one of the most unwieldy cabinets. Not only that, brain- wise it was below par not even good for the kampong. With that kind of composition, one that is very brainy, naturally Singapore , with no natural resources could outstrip Malaysia in every aspect of development. Malaysia , on the other hand, was too much preoccupied with its Malayness and the illusory ‘Ketuanan Melayu’ and was also more interested in useless mega iconic development rather than real social and economic development. Whenever Kuan Yew utters anything that deemed to be a slight on Malaysia, voices were raised admonishing him. Malaysia would never dare to face reality. That Singapore had shown that it could survive was a slap on those who believed that Singapore would fold up once it left Malaysia. Therefore it was natural that these doomsayers would try to rationalise their utterances to be in their favour to combat on whatever Kuan Yew commented. Its political jealousy. Singapore achieved its development status without any fanfare . But here in Malaysia, a development that was deceptive was proclaimed as having achieved development status. It was trumpeted as an achievement that befits first world status. This was self delusion. Malaysians are led to believe into a make believe world, a dream world.

    The leaders who themselves tend to believe in their own fabricated world did not realise the people were not taken in by this kind of illusion. Lee Kuan Yew believed in calling a spade a spade. I was there in Singapore when the People’s Action Party won the elections in 1959. He was forthright in his briefing to party members as to what was expected of them and what Singapore would face in the future. Ideologically, I did not agree with him. We in the University of Malaya Socialist Club had a different interpretation of socialist reconstruction. But he was a pragmatist and wanted to bring development and welfare to the Singaporeans. Well! He succeeded . Malaysia was so much embroiled in racial politics and due to the fear of losing political power, all actions taken by the main party in power was never targeted towards bringing wealth to all. Wealth was distributed to the chosen few only . They were the cronies and the backers of the party leadership to perpetuate their own selfish ends. Seeing the efficiency and the progress achieved by Singapore caused the Malaysian leadership to suffer from an inferiority complex. That Malaysia should suffer from this complex was of its own making. In a recent interview, Kuan Yew said that Malaysia could have done better if only it treated its minority Chinese and Indian population fairly. Instead they were completely marginalised and many of the best brains left the country in droves. He added that Singapore was a standing indictment to what Malaysia could have done differently. He just hit the nail right there on the head.

    Malaysia recently celebrated its 50th year of independence with a bagful of uncertainties. The racial divide has become more acute. The number of Malay graduates unemployed is on the increase. And this aspect can be very explosive. But its sad to see that no positive actions have been taken to address these social ills. Various excuses were given by Malaysian leaders why Singapore had far outstripped Malaysia in all aspects of social and economic advancement :- Singapore was small, they rationalised and therefore easy to manage. Singapore was not a state but merely an island. There was one other aspect that Malaysia practises and that is to politicise all aspects of life. All government organs and machinery were ‘UMNO-ised’. This was to ensure that the party will remain in power. Thus there was this misconception by the instruments of government as to what national interest is and what UMNO vested interest is.

    UMNO vested interest only benefited a few and not the whole nation. But due to the UMNO-isation of the various instruments of government, the country under the present administration had equated UMNO vested interest as being that of national interest. Thus development became an avenue of making money and not for the benefit of the people. The fight against corruption took a back seat. Transparency was put on hold. And the instruments of government took it to be of national interest to cater to the vested interest of UMNO. Enforcement of various enactments and laws was selective. Thus a ‘palace’ in Kelang, APs cronies and close-one-eye umno MPs could exist without proper procedure. Corruption infested all govt departments, the worst is the police and lately even in the judiciary. Singapore did not politicise its instruments of government. If ever policisation took place, it was guided by national interest. To be efficient and to be the best in the region was of paramount importance. Thus all the elements like corruption, lackadaisical attitude towards work and other black elements, which would retard such an aim, were eliminated. Singapore naturally had placed the right priority in it’s pursuit to achieve what is best for its people. This is the major difference between these two independent countries.

    Malaysia in its various attempts to cover up its failures embarked on several diversions. It wanted its citizens to be proud that the country had the tallest twin-tower in the world, although the structure was designed and built by foreigners. Its now a white-elephant wasting away in the glow of the sun and the moon. It achieved in sending a man into space at an exorbitant price. For what purpose? These are what the Malays of old would say “menang sorak” (hollow victories).

    It should be realised that administering a country can be likened to managing a corporate entity. If the management is efficient and dedicated and know what they are doing, the company will prosper. The reverse will be if the management is poor and bad the company will go bust. There are five countries around this region. There is Malaysia, and then Indonesia. To the east there is the Philippines and then there is that small enclave called the Sultanate of Brunei. All these four countries have abundance of natural resources but none can lay claim to have used all these resources to benefit the people.

    Poverty was rampant and independence had not brought in any significant benefits to the people. But tiny Singapore without any resources at all managed to bring development to its citizens. It had one of the best public MRT transport systems and airlines in the world and it is a very clean city state. Their universities, health care, ports are among the best in the world. It is impossible to compare what Singapore has achieved to what all these four countries had so far achieved. It was actually poor management and corruption, and nothing more.

    Everything is done for the vested interest of the few. Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines and the Sultanate of Brunei need good management teams. They would not be able to do this on their own steam. I would advise that they call on Kuan Yew to show them what good governance is. Why look East to Japan when the answers are all there just next door across the causeway.

  30. #30 by AhStone on Wednesday, 5 March 2008 - 11:27 pm

    its pathetic. there was a saying on the newspaper on STAR abt his successes and he brags abt all the development he and Bn has brought. by any normal mind, isn’t that what the government is supposed to be doing? the first thing i m sure we all remembered is his pledge to fight corruption and after 4 years, completely we see nothing. all we get is rubbish and he is turning malaysia into a circus

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