The Enigma of Democracy: MCA and UMNO

The last 48 hours in Malaysia saw the power of democracy. At MCA’s EGM on October 10, 2009, Ong Tee Keat was knocked out by a no-confidence motion; but Chua Soi Lek was not reinstated as Deputy (though re-admitted as member). Just a few hours ago, Mr money-politic Mohd Isa Samad won the Bagan Pinang (BP) by-election by a landslide.

The people of BP have spoken. The people at BP want development (ie, money in their pockets) without bothering the fact that the man they elected has been proven to be corrupt. I must now say (and I don’t say it with venom or anger; but with gentle assertion) – that unfortunately the people of BP have lost the moral authority to question corrupt practices prevalent in Malaysia, particularly at that constituency. They have lost the moral right to question the police officer who demands “coffee-money”. They have lost the moral right to demand a non-corrupt land office.

I suppose we deserve the Government we get. Despite the clear corrupt conduct of Isa Samad, he won. Pakatan Rakyat would have to study the situation and understand why they lost so badly. But in fairness, this was an UMNO seat to lose, though the higher majority won by UMNO raised eyebrows.

If we look at the UMNO machinery, Najib announced that Port Dickson located at BP as an “Army City” with incentives etc. Muhyiddin announced a new land for an Indian school. Najib attended the Makkal Sakti Party inaugural assembly. There was the usual promises of development etc, but the combination of Isa’s selection and Najib’s movement with the Indian community swung the votes to UMNO.

Pakatan’s perceived in-fighting is not helping. PAS Selangor’s antics in recent weeks have fueled talks that all is not well in Pakatan.

As for MCA, they are in deep waters. The members have ripped apart the party, and in my view, it will take many years for MCA to recover. Perhaps MCA should just leave BN and join Pakatan, that would give them a little more credence with the Chinese community. But one must respect the courage of the MCA members to take this step and rid the party of 2-fighting men. They now have the chance to start again, though (as mentioned earlier), I think, it will take some time before it gets back on its feet again.

We can’t really complain about BP’s decision to revive a corrupt man’s political career, as even the Americans were dumb enough to vote in George Bush for the 2nd term despite him clearly lying to the Americans. Whilst I don’t think the Americans are any better than us; but if the self-proclaimed world’s-best-democracy would vote a man in who lied, I suppose it’s alright to vote in a corrupt person.

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Posted on 13 October 2009. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0.

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