The Agong did not have any choice but to consent to the prime minister’s request to dissolve Parliament for an early general election, the palace said on 10 October.
Just the day before, the King gave so much hope to Malaysians when he warned politicians to focus on the people’s welfare and their needs in view of impending floods in the country.
But then, even the palace had to consent to an early general election, which certain quarters had been pushing for.
It was most irresponsible of the government to seek a dissolution of Parliament at a time when weather patterns are in turmoil in the country and in Southeast Asia.
Prime Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob should have continued to serve the people and the nation foremost. He should have proved his tenacity and leadership as well as fulfilled his “keluarga Malaysia” (Malaysian family) obligations that he had been peddling lately.
- Sign up for Aliran's free daily email updates or weekly newsletters or both
- Make a one-off donation to Persatuan Aliran Kesedaran Negara, CIMB a/c 8004240948
- Make a pledge or schedule an auto donation to Aliran every month or every quarter
- Become an Aliran member
But sadly, the PM could not withstand the desperate demands of certain top Umno leaders.
What then do we make of these episodes unfolding right under our nose?
People are asking questions, issuing statements and expressing opinions and unhappiness – which much of media would be most unwilling to publish, understandably.
Will the upcoming general election wipe away all the political woes and the people’s problems and bring relief across the political divides?
If on polling day the nation experiences extreme weather or a deluge, who takes the blame? What happens if devastating floods plunge hundreds, if not thousands, of people into misery in the run-up to polling?
If we say the civil service under a caretaker government will take care of all emergencies and contingencies, then why in the first place rush to see which political party becomes the next government with its own choice of prime minister to govern us?
If Umno is truly a great party that would secure the nation’s future, why did its leaders not put the nation’s precarious monsoon weather and the people’s socio-economic troubles above other priorities? Why did it not support Ismail Sabri Yaakob’s government as it prepared to face a potential deluge?
If everyone has to yield to these Umno leaders’ political gameplan, is it wrong to conclude that the nation is in deep peril?