The date 24 November 2022 will always remain etched as a historical day for the people of Malaysia.
It saw the ending of the Perikatan Nasional government.
It was also the date that marked the liberation of the people’s from the preceding illegitimate backdoor government, with the establishment of the Anwar Ibrahim-led Pakatan Harapan government.
Lest we forget, Anwar struggled against all odds for almost three decades to finally be anointed as the people’s choice for Prime Minister of Malaysia at the age of 74.
Anwar had throughout the 2022 general election campaign period constantly vowed to eradicate corruption, which he claimed had reached pandemic levels. He also pledged to curtail the various systemic abuses of power, especially by the political elites, and to institutionalise good governance in the public sector.
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Over the last 70-plus days of his leadership, the people have witnessed exposes of massive fraud, abuses of power of various degrees, and corrupt dealings of monumental proportions.
These atrocious crimes against the people, King and nation were perpetrated by several political juggernauts and their cronies.
It includes a mention of the son-in-law of a previous prime minister who had allegedly been awarded a government contract worth billions.
Such are the exposes that law-abiding people hope for a bold closure soon.
Thanks to the prime minister’s courage and commitment for a better Malaysia, we now also know that some political parties allegedly received bribes worth millions from contractors who may have benefited. Allegedly, these bribes were for political funding and to entice (bribe actually) voters in the last general election.
All such exposes of irregularities and questionable actions which involve prominent politicians are currently under investigations by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission.
Patriot applauds the quick action of the MACC in bringing to justice all those who are involved in fraud, abuse of power and corruption.
Anwar has reiterated on several occasions that he will not interfere in any ongoing investigation by any investigating agency.
His public assurances are also likely to be seen as a threat by those named in the ‘court cluster’ and who are now in parties within the PH government as well as holding key positions in his government.
Patriot demands unreservedly that there must not be any compromises for those named in the court cluster who have been found guilty by the court, even though they may hold important positions in government.
While the people generally now feeling more reassured of justice and a clean-up by the PH government, many other unresolved issues still need to be addressed – in particular, the spiralling costs of living, the need for job opportunities and the rise in number of urban poor.
Many in Malaysia welcomed with pride the special reception accorded to Anwar during his official visits to Indonesia, Brunei, Singapore and most recently Thailand. This was quite unseen during the official visits of Anwar’s past two predecessors.
Patriot believes the red carpet welcome and the recognition of hope registered in the Asean neighbourhood gives the people the courage to dream big for their future.
It certainly signals better ties with the leadership of the countries Anwar visited. Hopefully, this will pave the way for revived mutual economic wellbeing and prosperity for the people.
Patriot believes Vietnam too would be an important country to visit and should be Anwar’s next port of call. The nation is economically vibrant, and we veterans know it has many things to offer to Malaysia – in particular, its dedicated and disciplined workforce that Malaysian could emulate.
Let the PM’s visits also reform the mindset of the workforce in Malaysia and their work attitudes if we truly want to be successful like our neighbours.
If corruption and abuse of power is the bane of the Malaysian government and to Prime Minister Anwar in particular, he may want to find out how the Vietnamese government deals with these two issues.
Patriot is hopeful that the PH government will not fail the people this time but continue to be of absolute service to the nation.
We regard Prime Minister Anwar as the saviour of our deeply troubled nation.
Retired Brigadier General Dato’ Mohamed Arshad Raji is president of the National Patriots Association (Patriot)