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Brexit and Malaysian politics

Najib and Cameron - Photograph: freemalaysiatoday.com

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David Cameron resigned as it was obvious a majority of the citizens had lost confidence in his ability to direct the course of the UK. There’s a lesson in there for us, says Turtle Shell.

So, the United Kingdom has voted to leave the European Union. No matter what you may think of the outcome, I see it as a reflection of a mature democracy that allowed an issue of this magnitude – that would affect the lives of all its citizens – to go to a referendum rather than being left to the ruling political elites to decide.

In the end, David Cameron resigned as Prime Minister of the UK as he had staked his political reputation on Bremain. Now, he could have remained as prime minister, as he had hinted – for the referendum was not meant to determine the political life of any politician. But he did the honourable thing: he resigned as it was obvious a majority of the citizens had lost confidence in his ability to direct the course of the UK.

That is so unlike our Rahman Dahlan, who seemed to suggest that Cameron was indispensable and ought to have clung on as prime minister. This Umnoputra is, of course, putting forward his boss Najib’s strategy of clinging on to power no matter what.

Cameron has some moral scruples. He knows it is morally not right to remain as prime minister of the UK even if it is legally his right to do so. Cameron has no giant corruption scandal hanging over his neck [unlike you-know-who] but he lost a democratic vote which he had banked his political reputation on.

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Yes, Najib can well point to the Sarawak state elections and the ‘buy-elections’ of Kuala Kangsar and Sungai Besar as an indication that the rakyat, by and large, don’t give a hoot about the accusations of wrongdoings in 1MDB and the RM2.6bn donation scandal.

I concede that point – even as I understand our elections are not free and fair. That is the system we have adopted. Until and unless change comes to our beloved nation and a new government committed to undoing the sins of the Elections Commission is elected, we have to accept Najib’s contention.

But when Najib and his underlings resort to claiming even his god is on his side, that his god is rewarding him because he has done no wrong – that I won’t accept.

Brexit shows me that many are willing to venture into the unknown rather than remaining with the tried and tested. Never mind the gerrymandering of constituencies, the unfair weight to rural constituencies, the ‘buy’ elections tactics and whatnot condoned by our Election Commission.

The bottom line in Pakatan Rakyat’s failure to capture Putrajaya in GE13 (despite winning the popular vote) was that not enough rakyat were willing to venture into the unknown.

Those with the privileges were worried what a different government would do – never mind the corruption scandals, the extravagance of our govenrment. Some of the gravy was splashed around for the affected rakyat to grow dependent on these benefits and become fearful of losing them.

Until the opposition can get enough of these rakyat to see how much more our country can develop and progress and how much more they can benefit without the current leakages, the Umnoputras will romp to victory time and again.

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Sigh… but Pakatan Rakyat is no more and the opposition is in disarray. It is time to go under the turtle shell and await GE14. I can still vote according to my conscience when I walk into the voting booth.

Turtle Shell is the pseudonym of an Aliran reader.

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