History was made in the last two days when 500,000 Malaysians, regardless of race, religion, region, gender, age or even politics converged into Kuala Lumpur, Kuching and Kota Kinabalu demanding for good governance and free, fair elections to prevent Malaysia from becoming a rogue and failed state.
Has the Najib government learnt nothing from the two-day 500,000-people Bersih 4 overnight rally in KL, Kuching and KK demanding for good governance and free, fair elections?
Do the Prime Minister and his Cabinet Ministers really regard the 500,000 literate and idealistic Malaysians who came from all over the country to support Bersih 4 as bad-hats, trouble-makers and anti-national elements out to destroy the country and therefore should be ignored and marginalised?
If so, then the country is in deeper trouble than anyone realized and underlines the urgency and relevance of a change of government, which has not lost touch with the ground, and to really understand the truism of what Najib had said when he first became Prime Minister six years ago in April 2009 – that the era where the government knows best is over!
Even if they are reluctant to listen to the people, I urge Najib and his Ministers to listen to their former colleagues and predecessors, for example:
1. Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz, who was Minister for International Trade and Industry for over two decades, who felt a “deep sadness” as she celebrated Merdeka Day today because of all that had happened in the country, including the 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) and RM2.6 billion “donation” financial scandals. She said on her Facebook account late last night that the many things which had taken place had “cast a dark shadow over what should have been a joyous Merdeka celebration; and
2. Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, who was Deputy Prime Minister until sacked by Najib on 28th July 2015, who in his Merdeka Day message, warned of a serious trust deficit faced by the government. Muhyiddin said the people are growing concerned as the principles of integrity and accountability appear to be on the slide with the services of dedicated government officers “terminated, transferred, threatened and subjected to action”.
If the Najib and his Ministers have nothing to learn from the Berish 4 overnight rally by half-a-million Malaysians in Kuala Lumpur, Kuching and Kota Kinabalu, this will be a surest sign that Malaysia heading in the direction of a rogue and failed state.
A responsible Prime Minister will place as top of the agenda of the Cabinet meeting on Wednesday the lessons to be learnt from the Bersih 4 overnight rally, how to harness the patriotism, love and energies of the 500,000 Malaysians, particularly from the new generation of Malaysians, who had converged in Kuala Lumpur, Kuching and Kota Kinabalu in support of Bersih 4 to show their love, passion and commitment for the country in wanting a clean, transparent and good government to save Malaysia from the horrors of a rogue and failed state.
Or will Najib and the Cabinet just ignore that Bersih 4 was ever held, ignore that 500,000 Malaysians regardless of race, religion, region, age, gender or politics, had streamed into KL, Kuching and KK to demand for good governance and clean, free elections and ignore that Malaysia today is faced with the worst multiple crisis of confidence concerning politics, economy, good governance and nation-building in the history of the country?
Can Malaysians expect a constructive and positive Cabinet response to the Bersih 4 overnight rally at its meeting on Wednesday?
We shall see.
(Speech at prize-giving ceremony for the Merdeka Day Piala Impian Gelang Patah DAP football competition at Sri Orkid, Gelang Patah on Monday, 31st August 2015 at 5 pm)