By P Ramakrishnan
Umno is the reason we are in this mess today. Our duty is to get rid of it so that we can regain our dignity.
Umno had never been that vulnerable today as it had ever been in the last 70 over years. It had been the only dominant and domineering political party Malaysia had experienced. Its hold over Malaysia and its power to rule as it wished and pleased used to be absolute and unchallenged.
Fortunately for Malaysia, all that has clearly changed for now. Umno only has 37 MPs out of the total of 222 or 16.66 per cent of the august legislative chamber.
Glaringly, Umno’s grip on power is slipping. And it is desperate to cling on to power and reclaim its former eminence and dominance, come what may. It’s so desperate that it has lost its balance, its rationality and its sanity; it is pushing for an early election that is vehemently opposed by all thinking and well-meaning Malaysians because the risks involved during the monsoon period can be horrendous.
Umno had thrived in creating fear among the Malays and planting suspicion in their minds that their future and fortune will be taken away by the non-Malays, especially the Chinese, if they didn’t rally behind Umno. Another weapon that they have used very effectively is religion. They have been drumming into the Malays that the Christians are about to Christianize Malaysia.
Umno has very successfully destroyed our unity and harmony that was the hallmark of our nation during the time of our beloved Tunku – the halcyon days of tolerance and accommodation.
All that goodwill and peace that united us in the past had been destroyed and replaced with hatred, suspicion, greed, intolerance and selfishness. Peaceful Malaysia was buried and a disunited and fractured Malaysia has been created in its place.
Umno is now determined to capture its former glory by assuming that an early election will reverse its misfortune and restore power in the hands of Umno.
If this happens, Malaysia is doomed. They will plug every loophole in the Constitution that provided a gleam of hope for the rule of law. They will probably deny every opportunity for the non-Malays to earn a decent living through fair economic competition. Malaysia will never be the same and reforms will definitely have no chance whatsoever.
In the event, we are unable to stop an early election, thinking Malaysians must come together and get rid of the corrupt Umno political party once and for all.
With Umno out of the way, it will be possible to bring back the old Malaysia that respects the rights of all Malaysians, that accords fair economic opportunity to all, that eliminates corruption at all levels, that forbids any religion from intruding into the lives of people and that ensures the judiciary will function without fear or favour.
When the rule of law prevails, everybody is equal before the law and no selective prosecution or persecution will be allowed to occur.
Umno was Mahathir’s tool to destroy all that mattered in the past. The judiciary was emasculated, the rule of law became a joke, media freedom was shackled, the opposition was hounded, corruption thrived, peaceful assembly was banned. What we lost under him, we never recovered. Subsequently all these became even more severely curtailed. And to this day we are paying the price.
The time has come to put a stop to all this once and for all. There is no better time than this to get rid of Umno.
An early election will mean that we are on the course for disaster. It is our collective responsibility to act to prevent this plunge into perdition. We owe a duty to this nation that is our home. It is a moral obligation to put things right and save this country from the bigots and zealots, the corrupt and the greedy, the vile and the villain.
Let’s set the direction for this nation where the honest and decent people can live a peaceful and contented life. It was said by Noam Chomsky that “to live a life of honesty and integrity is the responsibility of every decent person.”
(The views expressed are those of the contributor and do not necessarily reflect the views of Rebuilding Malaysia.)
First published in Aliran on 6 October 2022