The greatest challenge facing the country is how to get out of the present political cul de sac if Malaysia is to break the trajectory towards a failed state because of rampant corruption, socio-economic injustices, collapse of governance, unbridled racial extremism and religious intolerance and bigotry and a rogue state because of violations of democracy, rule of law, free speech and egalitarianism.
If we are selfish and only think of our self interests, whether of political parties or individuals, we should not upset the status quo and the best thing to do is to wait for the next 14th General Election for UMNO/Barisan Nasional in the next hustings under the leadership of Datuk Seri Najib Razak cannot be weaker and more vulnerable.
But this will not be in the best interests of the nation, for Malaysia would have descended further in the next two years down the slope towards a failed and a rogue state.
However, the country seems to be in a cul de sac, both for those in the corridors of power and outside.
Despite one scandal after another, catapulting Malaysia to the stratosphere of being Number Three as the world’s “worst corruption scandal in 2015”, falling four places in the Transparency International’s Corruption Perception Index 2015, twin mega scandals which is the subject of investigations by seven different nations and caused the Prime Minister of Malaysia to be the subject of US Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) probe as to whether he is a “kleptocrat”; the plunging Malaysian ringgit; increasing brain drain; worst racial and religious polarisation in the country; Najib seems to have become even stronger politically with crackdowns on democratic freedoms and human rights like the recent action against The Malaysian Insider although his image and credibility has never been so low for a Malaysian Prime Minister whether nationally or internationally.
Those outside the corridors of power are also in a dilemma as to how get out of the political cul de sac to stop an unpopular Prime Minister from dragging the country in the direction of a failed and rogue state.
For the past year, I have been advocating a “Save Malaysia” campaign which transcends race, religion, region, politics and individuals to stop the nation’s trajectory towards a failed and rogue state.
Even former Prime Minister, Tun Mahathir, seemed to have come around to the view firstly, that the best way is for the country to have two political parties as this would ensure that one or the other would win a majority to form the government; and secondly, that everybody should act as patriotic citizens, irrespective of party affiliation or loyalties, to save the nation from heading for perdition.
Is the country ready for a realignment of progressive and patriotic political forces to save Malaysia and to keep faith with the vision of an united, inclusive, moderate, democratic and prosperous Malaysia?
The coming weeks will seek to give an answer to this question.
(Speech at the Penang DAP Dinner to jointly celebrate DAP’s 50th Anniversiary and Lim Kit Siang’s 75th Birthday at Hang Chiang School Hall, Penang on Sunday, 28th February 2016 at 10 pm)