If we want to see Malaysia continue to make that leap forward as astable, progressive, inclusive nation, these conditions must be met, writes JD Lovrenciear.
As expected, as the foundations get rocked within Umno, a political exodus has been set in motion.
Many have expressed fear and reservations about these former Umno politicians joining the queue at the door of Pakatan Harapan, Party Bersatu in particular. Even members within the new government have openly expressed their suspicion and reservations.
Now let us put aside our fear, suspicion and stereotyped thinking for a moment. Let us imagine we are in a brave new world and think outside the box.
Are all former Umno politicians dirty, corrupt, racist and religious bigots masquerading as 21st Century saviour wannabees? Are all Umno politicians guilty of the crimes that several key leaders within Umno have blatantly committed?
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Do we dare say that all the budding politicians within Umno have the gumption, courage and nerve to be like Dr Mahathir Mahathir to walk out of Umno even when no one dared to do so?
If we want to see Malaysia continue to make that leap forward as a stable, progressive, inclusive nation, Pakatan Harapan must ensure the following conditions are upheld before accepting any Umno MPs into their ranks.
First, the new government’s political pillars must be free from the architecture of Umno racial fundamentals.
Two, those former Ummo MPs who want to align themselves with the new leadership must be true believers of a contemporary Malaysia that forges ‘one nationhood of Malaysia for all Malaysians’.
Three, the converted must be truly converted and free of any potential legal charges, allegations or guilt of having profiteered from the sins of the old government.
Four, their jumping ship must strengthen the new partnership government – be it the DAP, PKR or Bersatu. They must be fully committed to banishing the scourge of the three Rs ie the obsession with race, religion and royalty, which had been exploited to the hilt by Umno
Five, all these migrating politicians must be committed to the reform agenda expected by the rakyat when they voted in Pakatan Harapan. Much of this agenda can be found in the Pakatan Harapan manifesto.
If all the above five conditions are met, there is no issue or concern if they leave the sinking Umno ship and join hands in the journey of creating a whole new world for Malaysians. After all, many of us who voted for Barisan Nasional in election after election finally took that leap to vote for Pakatan Harapan, didn’t we?
So let us welcome the reborn politicians – but only if they are fully committed to the reform agenda. At least they can now see what citizens expect from politicians, and they must now work towards that goal or be discarded for good.