Tan Sri, you are setting a fine example by riding pillion on a motor-bike without wearing a crash helmet, in total violation of the law, writes Tota in our Thinking Allowed column.
This is leadership by example, I suppose. May be you were trying to emulate an Agong who once got down from his royal dais to hijack a policeman’s motorbike and rode it gleefully without wearing a crash helmet, much to the horror of the “King’s men”, reminiscent of the people who cheered the emperor without his clothes in the children’s fairy tale.
The MSM carries daily news of Mat Rempit breaking every rule in the Highway Code and now we have the Deputy PM emulating them. Or was YAB trying to emulate the rider of the motorbike.
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Umno Baru has a lengthy catalogue of lawless behaviour. It appears that the rule of law is a stranger to Umno Baru. When Justice Harun declared Umno illegal, it died a natural death. The new party registered was Umno Baru and yet the party continues to call itself Umno! The party logo was supposed to be a new one and yet the old logo with some imperceptible cosmetic change continues to be used.
Umno Baru has allegedly let loose its mobs and thugs to disrupt, sometimes violently, legitimately organised meetings and forums. The Apcet forum at a hotel was disrupted by an Umno Baru mob that smashed tables and chairs to stop the proceedings. When the Suqiu organisation submitted its 17-point plan for the betterment of the country, the Umno Baru mob threatened them with “rivers of blood” outside the Chinese Assembly Hall in KL if they did not withdraw the 17-point plan. The Umno Baru thugs used similar tactics to stop the Article 11 Group from holding meetings and the Bar Council Forum on the conversion of minors to Islam when one spouse in a non-Malay marriage converts to Islam. Police inaction against the thugs has emboldened them even to prevent Karpal from entering Parliament House. An Umno Baru mob led by a screaming Khairy outside the US Embassy advertised to the whole world, conveying the impression what a barbaric party Umno Baru is and in the process portrayed Malaysia as a country trapped in the Stone Age.
The rule of law is seemingly not part of Umno Baru culture. While proclaiming to the whole world that “demonstrasi luar kebudayaan kita”, Umno Baru or its allies have since 8 March 2009, organised numerous illegal demonstrations in Pakatan-ruled states. On every occasion they have got away scot free without any action by the police, who appear to be conniving and colluding with the thugs.
Umno Baru operates under different laws and rules. Why was Ahmad Ismail not charged for Sedition when he made derogatory remarks about the Chinese whom he called “pendatang”? Umno Baru thugs tore down Koh Tsu Koon’s picture and stomped on it and no action was taken against them. But there were vehement calls for the use of the ISA and the withdrawal of citizenship against DAP members who stomped on the images of the three Pakatan assembly members who defected to the BN, resulting in the Perak Crisis. I am sure all hell would have broken loose if some Gerakan members in Malacca had stomped on Rustam’s picture. Some Umno Baru members were involved in the cow-head incident. While talking about religious sensitivities, certain Umno Baru members have no qualms about insulting the Hindus and Buddhists. Remember, the hallowed precincts of Paliament House was desecrated when Umno Baru slaughtered cows to celebrate Abdullah’s marriage to Jeanne.
The word “corruption” apparently does not exist in Umno Baru vocabulary. It is conveniently referred to as “money politics” and its members guilty of it are allowed to stand for election and get elected to Parliament and State Assemblies. Reports to the police and MACC about corrupt practices of Abdullah, Najib, Toyo etc, etc. have never been seriously acted upon. So the serious cancer of corruption is eating into the body of Umno Baru.
Umno Baru not only does not respect the law but it also is perceived to lack morality and ethics. When Parliament is dissolved before an election, the caretaker government cannot by right initiate development projects like road-building etc and giving cash, bicyles, shoes and uniforms to schoolchildren. These are downright corrup practices but UMNO Baru indulges in these with impunity because the EC behaves like a eunuch. By-elections are referred to cynically as “Buy Elections”because Umno Baru spends staggering amounts of money to “buy” ballots.
Perhaps, the worst case of Umno Baru lawlessness is the illegal take-over of the Perak state government. It was unethical, immoral and defeated the will of the people who had voted a Pakatan Rakyat government to rule them.
There is a poverty of brain power from top to bottom in Umno Baru, so they refuse to engage in the battle of the mind with anyone or any political party. It is indeed a pitiable political party and because it lacks brain power the only weapon in their arsenal is brawn power.
Did I hear anyone say that Umno Baru is a law-abiding party?
Promoting gender inequality
While all civilised societies, including Malaysia, are striving to promote gender equality, we have someone like Datuk Hamidah Osman, a Perak Exco membeer, saying that a woman cannot be a Chief Minister. This is the same odious female who made the uncivilised jibe at Speaker Sivakumar about the snake and the Indian! Her mindset apparently reflects her IQ. Rafidah in her response quite rightly suggested, given her brainpower, she was talking about her own qualification for such a post.
Our Constitution gives men and women equal rights. There are outstanding women in Malaysia who have the necessary qualifications and aptitude not only to become Chief Minister or Menteri Besar but also Prime Minister. I would welcome Wan Azizah as PM if Anwar becomes a victim of “Sodomy 2”. Zainah Anwar of SIS would make an excellent PM. There are many others, too numerous to name, who have the right credentials to be CM/MB or PM. Hamidah, because you know yourself, you spoke for yourself. You have a Stone Age mentality and therefore cannot speak on behalf of all Malaysian women.
RM100 to senior citizens
The Penang State Government’s plan to give every senior citizen who has lived and worked in Penang and is a registered voter RM100 has drawn criticism from Gerakan Youth. Their suggestion to open the scheme to every senior citizen whether or not they are registered voters needs evaluation. The government, the EC, political parties and NGOs have made repeated calls to unregistered voters to get registered. Indeed strenous efforts have been made to get every eligible citizen to register as voters. Despite all these efforts many, including senior citizens, have not been responsive and have shown a worrying disregard for their civic duties, setting a bad example for their children and family members. Do such people who abdicate their duties as a citizen deserve anything from society? Anyway they have between 1 May and 30 November to register as voters and qualify for the award.
Gerakan Youth has asked MACC to investigate the state government for corruption! They have accused the state government of fishing for votes. Receipients of this cash award are not stupid and they can vote for any party they like. The Kelantanese, for instance, are adept at taking UMNO money (aka taxpayers’money) and voting for Pas!
Gerakan as a component party of BN has remained blind, deaf and dumb to the rampant corrupt practices of the BN. When Parliament dissolves before a general election, legally the caretaker government is not allowed to spend millions carrying out development projects all over the country. Isn’t this corruption? Doesn’t the giving of cash, bicyles and school uniforms, paving of roads (up to the kitchen sink!) and lavish buffet amount to corruption? Isn’t the abuse of public facilities and institutions like the civil service, police and the Election of Commission to win elections corrupt practices?
Gerakan remained dumb about the practices of the infamous Zakaria, Toyo and currency smuggler Mohammad bin Mohammad Taib. Gerakan has maintained a deafening silence about the RM28 billion siphoned off by Umno/BN cronies from last year’s Budget allocations. A Time magazine report estimated that since the 1980s, RM360 billion had been allegedly siphoned off by Umno/BN cronies. What has Gerakan said about the numerous financial scandals – PKFZ and the endemic corruption in the Ministry of Youth, Sports and Culture, to name just two examples.
Gerakan ruled Penang since 1969 and on 8 March 2008, the people of Penang taught it an unforgettable lesson – the total annhilation of the party. The people of Penang are very conscious of Gerakan’s political tricks to destabilise the state government. If Gerakan thinks that its behaviour is going to endear it to Penangites, it does not have its brains in the right place! The ex-Gerakan president, Keng Yaik, got it right when he said that Gerakan would never be able to take back Penang. If Gerakan Youth can get this fact into their thick heads, they would not behave stupidly.
Cracking the melting pot
Rais Yatim’s call to marriageable Malaysians to “think a thousand times” before getting into mixed marriages demonstrates an amazing lack of logic. He failed to provide comparable statistics about divorce in respect of same ethnicity marriages and mixed marriages to confirm his claim that many mixed marriages end in divorce.
As Law Minister, he led the delegation to the International Court of Justice in respect of the ownership of Batu Puteh. Singapore got the island and Malaysia got the rocks! Malaysians formed their own opinions about Rais Yatim’s analytical and presentation skills.
Divorce rates all over the world are rising and it cuts across ethnicity, religion and colour.
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