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Deadwood in the cabinet

Photograph: Malaysiakini

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Mahathir was right when he called upon Najib to get rid of the deadwood in the cabinet. A helpful Tota has come up with a priority list of deadwood to be dumped.

Whenever Mahathir opens his mouth he spews unbelievable nonsense. A few examples will suffice to prove this.

Gerrymandering is despised the world over as it defeats the ‘one person, one vote’ concept but to Mahathir it is good. His recommendation that India should give up democracy to become a developed country is preposterous. Every developed country in the world is a secular democratic state.

He can lie quite shamelessly – Anwar’s black eye was self-inflicted, he said. Though Deepak has provided documented evidence of Najib’s alleged corruption, Mahathir advised Najib to ignore Deepak. Some of his criticism of the Pakatan Rakyat borders on stupidity. According to the Auditor-General’s Report, the four states under Pakatan Rakyat are better governed than the nine under BN.

In his book ‘The Other Malaysia’, Farish A Noor says of Mahathir: “Whatever the man says – even if he claims two plus two equals four – is now dismissed as the words of the great Mahazalim, who is cruel, tyrannical and unjust”. He has also been called variously ‘Mahasyaitan’, ‘Mahakejam’ and ‘Mahafiruan’.

To his credit, once in a while he does talk sense. After he got a ‘kick’ in Kubang Pasu, when he failed to get elected as a delegate to the Umno general assembly, he said that Malaysia had become a police state. He spoke the truth then.

Before the dissolution of Parliament, he called upon Najib to get rid of the deadwood in the Cabinet. Mahathir is right in calling many in the cabinet “deadwood”.

Because he is the boss, Najib will not start with himself. I suggest he starts the process in this order.

  1. Mukhriz got a kick in the Umno Youth elections. He came behind Khairy and Toyo, but allegedly (with his father’s help?) usurped Khairy’s place in the cabinet. He has said that an independent judiciary is harmful to the Malays! What a stupid thing to say when all over the world people are fighting for judicial independence.
  2. Hishammuddin, Home Minister, is commonly perceived as totally inefficient and ineffective. His utterances reveal that he has precious little between his ears. His actions often defy logic. In the cowhead incident, he sided with the pro-Umno culprits and said that they had no intention to hurt the Indians. Wonder whether he would have said the same thing if the roles were reversed. His statement that a Hindu temple cannot exist in a Malay-majority area reveals how stupid he is. Going by his logic there will be no mosques in almost all of Europe, Canada, USA, South America, Australia, and New Zealand because Muslims are a minority community in most parts of these countries. The crime rate in Malaysia is horrendous. No one believes his statistics. The gated communities, private security guards and the steep rise in the sale of home CCTV cameras and home alarm systems are a severe indictment of his police force. He made a total mess of dealing with Bersih 2.0 and Bersih 3.0. The High Court in considering the legality of Bersih condemned him as “irrational”. In the Borders bookshop incident, when Jawi confiscated a book before it was officially banned, Hishammuddin said that they had the legal authority. The High Court’s decision was a slap in his face. His sending of the police rather than the army to policemen to Lahad Datu was totally irresponsible. He would have been sacked in any other country.
  3. Rais Yatim, Minister of Information, is so utterly shameless in permitting the abuse of RTM for Umno’s religious and political propaganda that he has become a joke. His failure at the ICJ over Malaysia’s claim to Batu Puteh showed up what others believe to be his lack of intelligence and ability.
  4. Nazri, the de facto Law Minister amazingly did not even know that there was no Witness Protection Bill until Ambiga taught him. His statement that the separation of powers among the Legislature, Judiciary and Executive is a luxury Malaysia cannot afford reveals that he is deadwood. (This is what eminent surgeon and writer Bakri Musa has to say:, “Characters, like Nazri, Rais and Hishammuddin are like durians that have remained unsold for far too long. They are tak laku (unsellable), not even good for tempoyak. All they do is stink the place …”)
  5. Zahid, Defence Minister, it seems, is only good for signing controversial defence procurement agreements. His failure to defend Sabah immediately and effectively reveals his total inefficiency. What transpired in Lahad Datu should have ended his political career.
  6. Shabery Cheek, Minister of Youth, Sport and Culture, is utterly hopeless. Despite huge sponsorship, we are sliding in every sport, and corrupt practices. Rogues and scoundrels are in control of sport, according to many sports enthusiasts. Nothing done about the RM3.8m written off in the Malaysian Paralympic Council. No accounts presented for the RM20m spent at the London Olympics because the cronies and their families had a free ride. He promised to reveal the accounts but a low-level Napoleon in the civil service overruled him!
  7. Koh Tsu Koon, shameless. He was defeated, disgraced and discarded in Penang. He promised he would not accept public office through the back door but look where he is now. In an Umno-dominated Cabinet, the widespread perception is that all MCA and MIC ministers are ‘quota ministers’ who are political eunuchs and “beggars” (Keng Yaik’s word).
  8. Last but not least, Najib is well-known for the large amount of baggage he carries – Altantuya, the submarine scandal, the missing jet engines scandal, and the alleged corruption revealed by Deepak and Bala. He has apparently survived in a corrupt system supported by the Umno-owned print media, government-controlled RTM and a terribly flawed legal and judicial system with an AG who is a henchman to protect the corrupt in power.
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I quote M Bakri Musa again:

Today Malaysia is in disarray, its skipper less than diligent and bordering on being incompetent, its crew tired and distracted and indifferent. The ship of state is headed in the wrong direction …” (Excerpt from book ‘Liberating the Malay Mind’)

Umno will never change and by fair means or perhaps foul will try to retain power and maintain the status quo. Only People Power (Makkal Sakti) in the elections will be able to remove these kleptocrat political ‘scoundrels’.

People of Malaysia, arise, vote these ‘scoundrels’ out. Claim your democracy, freedom and independence. You have the power to do that in GE13. We must together put the country on the right path.

Tota is the pseudonym of a regular contributor to our Thinking Allowed Online section.

Originally published on aliran.com on 13 April 2013.


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