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Urgently needed: Polling day Youthquake and Wanitaquake

Women at a Free Maria march in 2016 - Women played a crucial role in bringing about political change

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Better still if the quakes are turned into a Youthtsunami and a Wanitatsunami to wipe out the corrupt and inefficient Umno-dominated BN government that has ruined the country, writes Tota.

The cry of “Ubah!” has resonated across the country, reaching a crescendo on the eve of polling.

Two groups of people who can help to bring about change are the youth and women voters.

Bad BN policies have ruined the lives of thousands of youth. Some 504,000 graduates are reportedly unemployed because they are unemployable: they lack knowledge, communication, informaton and learning technology (ILT) and interpersonal skills.

The blame for this state of affairs should be put on rotten policies created and implemented by the Ministry of Education. In a capitalist economy there are cycles of inflation and deflation. During poor economic times, there will be unemployed graduates but they will find employment when the economy picks up, which will not be the case with unemployable graduates in Malaysia.

Even the youth who find employment with about RM2,000 pay find it difficult to put body and soul together given the ever increasing cost of living and other factors. Because public transport is so hopeless, they need to buy a car with a loan. Petrol and maintenance cost is high. They need to service their credit card. Accomodation is costly as rentals are high.

These poor young employees get deeper and deeper into debt. About 40 young people are reportedly declared bankrupt every day!

Given this situation, will young people ever save enough to buy even a low-cost flat, settle down and start a family? Young people, you need a change of government – a government ruled by intelligent, talented, honest and incorruptible people – to reverse your plight.

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The other important group that can bring about change is women. Political parties within the BN – Umno, MCA, MIC and Gerakan (in West Malaysia) all have women’s wings. It is a tragic that the leaders of these parties, both men and women, have successfully duped, manipulated and exploited them. This is especially true of Wanita Umno and Puteri Umno.

Malaysia had the most progressive Muslim Ffmily laws once but Umno amended many of the provisions and by 2003 Malaysia was at the bottom. The UN report “Progress of the World’s Women” put Malaysia in the company of Algeria, Bangladesh, Egypt, Iran, Jordon, Pakistan and Saudi Arabia – all with highly discriminatory family laws.

Malaysia has not signed the UN Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (Cedaw). The problems confronting Muslim women are many – marriage, custodial rights, property rights, alimony and domestic violence. Society also has to confront problems like teenage pregnancy, incest and baby dumping.

Umno leaders have pulled wool over the eyes of Muslim women and led them like sheep. A mythical 30%t of women in all layers of government is the proverbial carrot dangled before their eyes. Also the so-called 30% club has been tantalisingly created to fool the women.

Can women ask Najib why women make up only 12% of his cabinet. Look at young Pakatan Harapan. They have women mayors and a woman state assembly speaker. Has Umno-dominated BN anything similar to show?

So young people and the wanita, we urgently need a Youthquake and Wanitaquake to elect a new government to rule the country. Better still if the Youthquake and the Wanitaquake is turned into a Youth tsunami and a Wanita tsunami to wipe out the corrupt and inefficient Umno-dominated BN government that has ruined the country in every way.

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Tota, short for Theatre Of The Absurd, is the pseudonym of a regular contributor to our Thinking Allowed section.

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