Although I am a DAP member and a huge supporter of Pakatan Rakyat, I must declare that I am a little disappointed as to how they have been conducting themselves of late. When it comes to seat allocations during the General Elections is it obvious that many people want their say, and the expression "washing dirty linen in public" could be very aptly used.
After an atrocious showing by Umno at their General Assembly which basically comprised of fear-mongering the loss of Malay power, disrespect to the royal institution by the opposition and DAP bashing, I would have thought that Pakatan Rakyat, especially the DAP would capitalise on this hatred. However what has transpired since from the opposition parties have been extremely disappointing.
It is already very clear that the BN government is corrupt and racist. Umno are unapologetic in their slanderous onslaught which is dripping with racial venom and blatant lies. The MCA continues to flog the hudud horse, pitting PAS against the DAP and Gerakan offering nuggets of sense in support of electoral reform. The party missing from this equation happens to be the MIC, who have done the most intelligent thing by keeping silent.
The same cannot be said of the opposition parties. The DAP have failed to capitalise on Umno's divisiveness but have instead descended into a war of words over the "Godfather" issue. Johor DAP have also aired their grievances publicly about the state leadership, and there truly seems to be a lack of leadership.
PKR are too busy hounding Shahrizat Abdul Jalil and her family, and PAS are now keeping mum on Selangor State Exco Hasan Ali on one hand but on the other hand says they would close the Genting casino if they take over as the state government of Pahang. Who is the one showing leadership at the moment?
Having just attended a Strategic Advisor training, I realised that the most successful companies have inspirational leaders with a clear vision and mission. It is the belief their own vision and mission which would perpetuated through the company to the employees. Companies such as Google, Apple and Facebook have built up their own unique identities amongst their staff, and in turn, their staff become walking advertisements for their organisations.
So what is Pakatan Rakyat's vision and mission? Lim Guan Eng has been very proficient at purporting the DAP vision of a Competent, Accountable and Transparent (CAT) government. To a large extent, he has been successful at implementing this principle in Penang, and the state has the distinction of bringing in the most amount of foreign investment out of any state.
The same cannot truly be said of the other PR states especially Kedah. Although Selangor has done better under PR under the leadership of Khalid Ibrahim as compared to the Khir Toyo administration, corruption is still rampant within the state. Kedah has been subject to unnecessary controversy by trying to clamp down on 'vice' businesses during Ramadhan which would be considered to be an infringement of non-Muslim rights.
It is clear that the current BN government would continue spending ourselves into further debt and worsen the capital outflow which has already amounted to RM896 billion over the past 10 years. The corruption, croynism, and blatant plundering of the nation's coffers as well as Petronas profits would increase rather than being stemmed, and another mandate at the next general elections would simply encourage them further.
But is PR truly the answer? Could we in good conscience vote for them? The most recent surveys show that 88%-90% of newly registered ethnically Chinese youth would vote for the opposition but only 23%-26% of Malay Youth would vote for PR.
Why is there such a massive discrepancy? One could argue that the Chinese media is fairer to the opposition, and the complete capitulation of the MCA would result in a huge shift towards PR, especially the DAP. However, the Malay Youth would ultimately be influenced by the mainstream media, and Umno has made a pretty good case of protecting Malay rights.
Have PKR and PAS failed to be sufficiently Malay in this respect? Truthfully, the reality that PKR and PAS are both majority Malay parties are irrelevant. Umno have been very successful at branding their party as the "Defender of Malay Rights". This is perpetuated from the top leadership all the way to the bottom, and unlike the MCA, Umno still holds a large amount of sway with the rural folk.
Right now what PKR, PAS and the DAP have to do is plan a united front and the same message must be proclaimed from every member of each component party. There is no doubt that PR is able to govern. They have been able to do so in four states with varying degrees of success. This is the time to step up, so please do not give the Rakyat an excuse to stay at home come polling day.
The next general election is looming and perhaps this is a good time for PR leaders to reflect on their values and plan a combined mounted offensive come the New Year. It is no use waving the Buku Jingga in our faces or pointing to the superior FDI figures any longer. We need strong, confident leaders who would be united in one voice and with one vision for the nation.
There is a simple reason why Najib's "1Malaysia" failed whereas the Umno "Ketuanan Melayu" succeeds. When it is written in the hearts and minds of their members, they make others believe. This is the season for miracles.
Pakatan Rakyat, make us believe.
Free Malaysia Today ('Tis the season for miracles) http://www.freemalaysiatoday.com/2011/12/22/tis-the-season-for-miracles/
Malaysia Chronicle (To guarantee victory, Pakatan too needs to buck up) http://www.malaysia-chronicle.com/index.php?option=com_k2&view=item&id=24911:to-guarantee-victory-pakatan-too-needs-to-buck-up&Itemid=2