A new year has come and Malaysians who have gone through a tough time due to the Covid pandemic, socioeconomic woes, inflation and the recent floods would want to see some light of enlightened politics and good governance emerging.
While the Barisan Nasional and Perikatan Nasional thrive on a reductionist part of the simplistic ideology of race, religion, and socioeconomic privilege, Pakatan Harapan is also going through ideological reductionism: its politics have been made simple, with leaders of yesteryear remaining in charge such as Anwar Ibrahim, Lim Kit Siang, Mohamad Sabu, Shafie Abdal and elite politicians aligned to them.
The nation is in dire need of a new vision of society where the dignity of labour, equitable distribution of wealth, businesses that exist for the common good, local government empowerment and the preservation of the environment become a rallying cry of politicians and civil society.
The emergence of youthful Muda as a political party that represents multi-ethnic Malaysia brings great hope, but unless it takes a progressive part in striving for the common good, articulating the real spirit of sustainable development in the core areas mentioned above, it could end as a political party that serves mere capitalist interests.
Therefore, it is hoped that this year will see soul searching among elite politicians who have overstayed their welcome. There is a need for a new concrete alternative to BN and PN, and unless PH leaders make preparations to step down and mould a broad spectrum of grassroots leaders, I don’t see any changes emerging.
The new alternative politics might take time to win the general election, but an alternative foundation for the future generation to steer the country from a reductionist ideology could be put in place.
In this context, a broad-based people’s movement that pursues equity and justice could prevail against reductionist elitism that is currently dictating the course of the nation. – Malaysiakini