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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Open letter to Tan Sri Fong Chan Onn


Dear Tan Sri Chairman,

I think your reply ( http://www.thestar.com.my/News/Nation/2013/10/26/Fong-Allegations-are-utter-lies-Reports-on-sale-of-Stars-assets-spread-with-intention-to-tarnish-ima.aspx ) to the allegations in this blog was so funny, I can’t believe you were a former Minister. But you are from MCA, so it’s okay.

You only beat around the bush but never answer the questions / issues / controversies. You may be able to bluff some people, but not everyone stupid like MCA leaders like to think we are.

You said the Bukit Tunku land was sold to a royalty who is relative of Tunku Abdul Rahman. Do you dare to name that person or his or her company? I bet you won’t dare to. Please do not think Star’s staff does not know about the real story to the deal. If the land not for property development, the owner paying millions to do what? Build Disneyland? Vincent know the whole story. He is part of the conspiracy.

On LiTV, you also never answer why Vincent Lee paid an expensive premium for the stake. RM35 million is a lot of money. That’s over RM20 million more than what it is thought to be worth. Where did the RM20 million go to? Vincent use the kickback to fund CSL to topple Liow Tiong Lai? If divide by 2,500 delegates, one person will get RM8,000. Still a lot of money.

About newsprint, you said the company has been very careful. Then, why is our competitor (like NST) paying average of US$560 per tonne when we pay US$650 per tonne? Ok, you said we didn’t pay US$650 per tonne. So, how much did Vincent pay? Show proof, don’t just talk and try to hide!

Star Chairman who must answer to the corruption in the company
Star also manipulate figures to mislead. We know Vincent issue directive to Finance to magically inflate the profits by factoring in the RM135 million sale of the old office in Section 13, PJ. This is under accounting principles, wrong because the building hasn’t even been built. This is to cover the huge drop in profits from operations.

Enough of this nonsense, Tan Sri. You and I know all this is due to the siphoning taking place right under our noses for political purposes. This unholy partnership of Chua Soi Lek, Vincent Lee and Chun Wai is treating Star like a bottomless ATM machine. But poor Chun Wai gets the smallest portion.

There is only one way to clear the air. Publicise the cash reserves and net tangible assets and compare between Steven Tan, Clement Hii and Vincent Lee. No need to be afraid if you are right.

Say what you like, Steven Tan is tops in terms of building this company into what it is. Now, I am sure he is upset at the destruction and pilferage committed by the corrupted trio who knows no shame.

Thank you.

liongsik88@gmail.com

* This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent our views

New fighter jet decision may take longer, focus on budget deficit – Najib

Malaysia's decision over which fighter jet it will choose to replace its ageing fleet of 18 Russian-made MIG-29s might be delayed as the country focuses on cutting its budget deficit, Prime Minister Najib Razak (pic, left) said.
"It might take a little longer because we need to consolidate our fiscal position first and this is what people want and this is what the market wants," Najib told Reuters on Thursday on the sidelines of a conference in London.
"My priority would be to secure the macro position of the government to make sure our deficit is cut and at the same time we will spend on defence to the level we can afford to do, so... it all depends on how strong we feel financially."
Malaysia shortlisted five combat aircraft in March, principally the Eurofighter Typhoon - made by European consortium BAE Systems, EADS and Finmeccanica - France's Dassault Aviation Rafale, Boeing's F/A 18E/F Super Hornet and Russia's Sukhoi Su-30 and Sweden's SAAB JAS-39 Gripen.
Industry sources said at the time that the purchase could run into billions of dollars.
The government has however come under pressure to tackle its high budget deficit and growing debt pile. In July, ratings agency Fitch cut its outlook on Malaysia's sovereign debt to negative.
Countries such as Malaysia have become top targets for US and European defence manufacturers who want to increase their share of exports to make up for falling defence spending in their home markets. - Reuters

Putrajaya U-turns on call to advertise in Utusan

In just over a month after Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak (pic, left) pitched for companies and government agencies to advertise in the Malay daily Utusan Malaysia Putrajaya has now made a U-turn on the call.
Minister in the Prime Minister's Department Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim said the federal government had never recommended that Utusan be given priority for advertisement purposes.
"The government only stressed that advertisements be placed in main newspapers in Malaysia so that the message can achieve its objective," he said in a written reply to Sim Tze Tzin (PKR-Bayan Baru) in Parliament.
He said to date, RM1.55 million worth of advertisements had been placed in Umno-owned Utusan Malaysia by agencies and departments under the Prime Minister's Department for 2011 and 2012.
In 2011, RM732,972.92 was spent, and in 2102 the amount increased to RM822,638.04.
When officially opening Utusan's new headquarters on September 13, Najib had said newspaper companies cannot rely solely on circulation to stay in business and that advertising was needed to keep the 75-year-old newspaper afloat.
"I hope all government agencies, GLCs and private companies, especially those owned by Bumiputeras, will show their support by giving more advertisements to Utusan. Only this will help keep Utusan on track," the prime minister was reported as saying.
His call was soundly criticised by the DAP, which said it was another example of Putrajaya wasting taxpayers’ money in an attempt to bail out the paper.
DAP national publicity secretary Tony Pua said then that Najib’s call showed that the paper had lost readers due to its racist stand.
The Pakatan Rakyat leadership has been wary of the Umno mouthpiece's style of reporting and several have sued it for its reports.
Among the Pakatan leaders who had taken Utusan to court for defamation and won are opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, Penang Chief Minister and DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng, Seputeh MP and former Selangor exco member Teresa Kok from DAP, and former Perak menteri besar Datuk Seri Mohamad Nizar Jamaluddin from PAS.
Last January, Anwar won a suit against Utusan after High Court judge Datuk V.T. Singham found that the daily had defamed him in two articles.
The court ruled that the articles, which had implied that Anwar had intended to legalise homosexuality, was a gross mistaking of facts in complete disregard for Anwar’s reputation.
The court also found that the news articles were lacking in responsible journalism and that the newspaper took high risk in publishing them on the front page, without verifying the truth.
In February, the Court of Appeal upheld a High Court decision ordering Utusan to pay RM200,000 in general and aggravated damages to Lim over a defamatory article.
Lim, who is Bagan MP and Air Putih assemblyman, had sued Utusan for defaming him in an article entitled, “Kebiadaban Guan Eng” published on December 20, 2011.
Utusan Malaysia columnist Datuk Chamil Wariya and Utusan Melayu openly apologised to Teresa Kok in the High Court in June as part of a settlement in a defamation suit filed by Kok.
The court also ordered Utusan Melayu to pay costs of RM50,000 and to publish an apology in the daily.
Kok had filed a RM30 million defamation suit against Utusan Melayu, which publishes Utusan Malaysia, and Chamil on December 12, 2008.
The suit was over a short story written by Chamil, who is also Malaysian Press Institute CEO, which allegedly referred, either directly or by innuendo, to Kok. The story titled YB Josephine was published in Utusan on October 12, 2008.
In July, the Kuala Lumpur High Court awarded Mohammad Nizar RM250,000 in damages in his suit against Utusan over the WWW1 car registration number issue. In his statement of claim, Nizar said the defendant had implied that Nizar had tried to incite the people to hate the Sultan of Johor.

In London, Najib defends Allah ruling for security, harmony reasons

Najib addresses the World Islamic Economic Forum in London on October 29, 2013. - Reuters file pic, November 1, 2013. Najib addresses the World Islamic Economic Forum in London on October 29, 2013. - Reuters file pic, November 1, 2013.Once again, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has chosen to open up on a touchy subject in Malaysia while travelling abroad, defending the court ruling which effectively banned Christians here from using the word Allah.
He said that the curb against the Catholic weekly, Herald, using the word Allah was necessary to protect public security and national harmony, going as far to describe the Herald as a publication with wide circulation.
The Herald publishes 14,000 copies every week and all are sold within the confines of churches.
In an interview with Reuters in London, Najib said: "People must understand that there are sensitivities in Malaysia, but what is important is public security and national harmony."
The prime minister also said that the Court of Appeal decision only covered the Catholic Herald and that the government would not stop people using the word in predominantly Christian areas.
"With respect to the court ruling it only applies to the Herald paper, which has got wide circulation, and doesn't apply to the situation in Sabah and Sarawak.
"So what we are trying to do objectively and above all is to ensure stability and national harmony," he said on the sidelines of the World Islamic Economic Forum.
Najib's interpretation of the Court of Appeal's decision does not square with what Christian leaders, constitutional law experts and former attorney general Tan Sri Abu Talib Othman have said about  the effect of the October 14 decision.
Critics of the court's decision argued that the judges' decision that Allah was not an integral part of Christian worship carries wider consequences beyond the Catholic Herald.
Putrajaya has attempted to placate Christians in Sabah and Sarawak – an important vote bank for Barisan Nasional – by stressing that the court decision does not stop them from using the word Allah when worshipping but this concession has not appeased church leaders who point out that many East Malaysians now live and work in West Malaysia.
Christian leaders also have pointed out that Christians have used the word Allah for over 100 years, certainly way before the independence of the country in 1957, and done so without causing any confusion among Muslims or disharmony in the country.
Najib's comments on the Allah court decision at least gives Malaysians an insight into his position on the ruling. So far, he has only assured East Malaysians that a 10-point plan to resolve outstanding
issues involving Christians is still intact.
A key component of that plan, unveiled by the government in 2011, allows the import of Malay-language bibles which contain the word Allah.
Najib generally stays clear of controversial subjects and rarely has press conferences at home where he speaks on a range of issues.
This is in contrast to Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad who took on all questions, from the mundane to the serious, from the press when he was the PM.
In September, Najib had told the United Nations General Assembly that there was a need for al-wasatiyyah, or the practice of moderation, as a key tool in fighting extremism despite moves to restrict the spread of Shia Islam in Malaysia.
Mainly Muslim Malaysia follows mainstream Sunni Islam teachings but a number of Malays have been persecuted for being Shias. Islam is a state matter but the federal religious authorities also play a large role in regulating religious affairs.
Critics said the prime minister should have denounced such restrictions which include raids and arrests, adding it went against his call for moderation.

BEST OF THE WEEK: From fat salaries to slush funds to Deepavali

BEST OF THE WEEK: From fat salaries to slush funds to Deepavali
Fat salaries
Realistically, we need to pay to get the best. Plus, many still take a pay cut (to join government agencies).
Khairy Jamaluddin, Youth and Sports Minister, justifying high salaries for officers contracted to government agencies, saying they are needed to attract top talent

Quality equals pay' is also a simplistic argument. Look at the pay of Kenneth Lay of Enron before it went bust. (The) chairman of SYABAS is well compensated, too, but it is not a representation of quality. Still needs government bailout.
Ong Kian Ming, Serdang MP

Pakatan Rakyat’s manifesto
Out of the research that we have done, 85 percent of their 2008 manifesto was not even implemented.
Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, Home Minister, claiming only 15 percent of Pakatan Rakyat's promises published in its 2008 manifesto were implemented before the 2013 general election

Slush funds
The entire budget is filled with such discretionary black holes that can easily be turned into slush funds.
Liew Chin Tong, Kluang MP, finding out at least RM6.8 billion of the Prime Minister Department's 2014 budget as "near slush funds", alleging that the funds had scant details and were meant for political purposes

Deepavali
Currently one day is declared for Deepavali. I will submit a proposal to the prime minister during the MIC Deepavali Open House in Batu Caves on November 2, seeking two days off for Deepavali.
G Palanivel, MIC president

GST
I agree the GST system is efficient but I did not implement it...there was a reason why I did not implement it. We must ensure the income of the people is high and we must also ensure the nation has a good taxation structure.
Anwar Ibrahim, opposition leader

PKR to amend constitution
Among the three vice-presidents of PKR, one must be from Sabah or Sarawak. The Sabah and Sarawak PKR chairpersons will automatically become a member of the party political bureau. This will be a special status that party leaders in the peninsula do not enjoy..
Tan Yee Kew, PKR constitutional amendment committee head, on PKR’s plan to amend its constitution to empower grassroots in the decision-making process and provide more clout to members in Sabah and Sarawak

Why are Malays obsessed with SUPREMACY? Is it brainwashing or their own insecurity?

Why are Malays obsessed with SUPREMACY? Is it brainwashing or their own insecurity?
The great UMNO assembly has come to a conclusion and the winners and losers are now known to all. But are Malays, and especially UMNO, satisfied with the circus show that reeked of another plethora of race-bashing and the absurd belief of subscribing to “ketuanan Melayu” or Malay supremacy?
Why are the Malays obsessed with being supreme over the minorities in the country? Are they being brainwashed by their leaders or is it just their bad nature, a sort of defense mechanism and sick insecurity to wish to rub it into the faces of the other races?
Tough questions although the answers are not difficult to find.
The recently-concluded UMNO assembly ended in a whimper and there is sufficient proof and evidence to suggest that UMNO is terribly dissatisfied with all that has materialized so far for the Malays and that is why there was a show of anger and resentment towards the other races by its leaders.
But when will UMNO leaders own up and admit to their faults and weaknesses instead of shifting the blame on the non-Malays? If only they will learn to play by the rules of “demokrasi tulen” or pure democracy instead of their tinkered version of democracy, all will be well for all Malaysians.
UMNO’s bizarre way and manner of implementing skewered democracy since they evicted Tunku Abdul Rahman from the prime minister’s chair is to be fully blamed for how Malaysia has evolved into a state of disarray.
There is historical evidence to suggest that it is not the Malays or Chinese or Indians that have failed the nation but the subsequent UMNO leaders since 1970 that have formulated national policies that have gone awry.
If Malaysia today is divided and disorientated and hardly getting anywhere, it is because of the foolish and foolhardy ploys of UMNO leaders that have caused and created the mess the nation is currently sinking into like quicksand.
UMNO must look to change
Transformation, real transformation and change are the way out for Malaysians. UMNO must understand and think not along racial or even national lines but along global principles as this is the era of globalization.
By being parochial and thinking along Malay ways only there is that grave and real danger that the nation will sink further into the quagmire and end up as a failed state or rogue nation. The signs and symptoms that Malaysia is suffering from the malaise and malady of being a devastated nation are already apparent now.
This is why it is high time for UMNO leaders to get back to their senses and put the interests of the nation above their self-seeking ways. There is that pressing need for UMNO leaders to change tack instead of harping on the same themes like a broken record.
UMNO as the so-called champion of the Malay struggle must wake up to the real situation in this country and go to the ground level to serve and address the needs of the people. This is what countries that are successful and happy have done though they are multi-cultural they have managed to get into the groove of globalization by facing up to the realities of life in today’s world.
Meanwhile UMNO leaders hold sway on this nation with their foggy ideas of their own and threaten and intimidate and frighten the Malays into thinking that the non-Malays are their common enemy. This is unnecessary, mischievous intent that is really motivated to get them to have a vice-like grip of the Malay vote that they might stay in power rather than share power with non-Malays.
UMNO leaders must not for a moment think that their real agenda is not known to the Malays and other races. The reason is simple. Their “sandiwaras” have been running even longer than most Broadway plays and this is why Malaysians have got wind of their intent and motives.
The agenda of UMNO leaders is simple – to make use of Malays to cling on to being the greater power in this country. But the results of the 13th GE, if it is to be analyzed fairly and accurately, shows a paradigm shift by Malaysian voters in favor of egalitarian values.
Malays have come to know and recognize and see through the ploys of UMNO and its leaders that they are not really serious or sincere but self-seeking and suffering from avarice and greed that knows no bounds.
This is the real dilemma that Malays suffer the fact that their welfare and well-being is being used as a pretext and excuse by UMNO and its leaders to cling on to power and to enrich self and promote elitism.
This is what has emerged as the real Malay dilemma.
The options for Malays
While the option for Malays might be to seek redress in the alternative front of Pakatan Rakyat (PR) there are certain drawbacks as shown in the run-up and post 13th GE. PR is not only a viable option for Malays but for the Chinese and Indian community as well.
The drawbacks for Malaysians in relying and putting their trust in PR is that they are a disjointed side with disagreements that have not caused them to come together but to emerge splintered.
This is why while a sizeable portion of voters, especially in East Malaysia, see PR as a viable alternative the attractiveness is diminished by the fact that the opposition coalition suffers from disunity.
This is the only reason why BN and UMNO are still in power. But If PR is able to be united and to be in consensus this will pave the way for Malaysians to opt for them as the political force of the future. But the fact is the rift within the three parties within PR is quite serious.
This definitely does put the future of Malaysians in limbo as to their political direction and leadership. They appear to be caught between the devil and the deep blue sea.
The Malays in particular are the real community that is suffering from the backlash between BN and PR like the Malay proverb: “Gajah sama gajah berjuang, pelanduk mati ditengah-tengah” (The elephant fights with the elephant but it is the deer that is caught in between that dies)
Ever since the emergence of PR as a formidable political force, the nation of Malaysia has been in a state of flux as there is a pull by BN and a push by PR at the same time. This has caused no real growth and instead what has transpired is that the nation has stagnated.
Malays hold the key by being in the majority
It is really the Malays by virtue of being the largest group by race that have the strength in numbers to really call the shots. But unfortunately so far they have failed to use their pulling power to vote and to choose and decide for themselves the people that will be able to move them forward.
This is the reason for Malaysia going around in circles and not moving forward in this New Millennium. Malays have to be brave and honest and truthful in wanting to advance and prosper in life and the only way they can do so is to subscribe fully to the tenets and obligations of democracy.
Only by calling a spade a spade and by playing to the rules of the game can the Malays and other races in this country cause Malaysia to move forward and become a Great Nation. The way forward is to shun evil politics and the politics of deceit and go by those who uphold integrity and honesty.
This is the only way Malaysia can drag itself out of the throes of being a failed state. It is really up to the Malays and they hold the key to decide if Malaysia succeeds or fails. It is therefore advisable for them to think rationally, with their heads on their shoulders, and learn to move forward with the other races or face doom.
Malaysia Chronicle

BARBARIANS AT THE GATE IN SG LIMAU: An acid test for Dr M more than for Mukhriz

BARBARIANS AT THE GATE IN SG LIMAU: An acid test for Dr M more than for Mukhriz
KUALA LUMPUR - Mukhriz may not be former prime minister Mahathir Mohamad’s favourite child, those close to the family say his sister Marina is. But the rivalry between Mukhriz and arch rival Khairy Jamaluddin may spark another Mahathir-Badawi cold war.
The feud between Mahathir and his self-picked successor Abdullah Badawi began in the mid-2000s after Khairy urged his father-in-law, Badawi, to drop Mahathir's prized mega project in Johor - the S-shaped or crooked bridge to Singapore.
Immediately after the 13th general election, Mahathir blamed lackluster Prime Minister Najib Razak for the Umno-BN's poor performance. But the wily veteran politician stopped short at riddling Najib with the same merciless machine-gun fire he had applied to the hapless Badawi.
Why? Well, Mahathir still needed Najib to help get Mukhriz into the top rung of leadership at Umno. He wanted Mukhriz to be made one of the party's 3 vice presidents.
As it turned out, Najib betrayed Mahathir and avoided showing any support for Mukhriz, who lost despite a late-minute fight-back.
Biding his time for Mukhriz
Mahathir, ruthless and Machiavellian he may be, is not short of grey matter.
He could immediately tell Najib was very different from Badawi, who had scored the hugest landslide win ever for the Umno-BN during the 2004 general election. It was an achievement that Mahathir himself was never able to clinch despite his 22-year-monopoly over the country.
Najib, dogged by his corruption and murder scandals as well as his infamous 'bathe the keris in Chinese blood' battle-cry, could at best scrape through, and this was exactly what happened.
If Mahathir had rocked Umno in the same way he had when he attacked Badawi, the party could have collapsed and the Opposition would have easily swept to power. This would be the worst scenario for Dr M, who perhaps has the most to lose since his sons Mirzan and Mokhzani are already among the world's wealthiest people.
While Khairy - often called the richest unemployed young Malay politician - is no slouch when it comes to wealth accumulation, and neither are Najib and his own sons for that matter, Mahathir and former finance minister Daim Zainuddin are probably still ahead in the 'plunder Malaysia' game given their fantastic and prolonged head-start.
Mahathir knew that he still had to hold Najib by the hand. He needed to help Najib or the Umno-BN would be finished. But the GE13 is now over.
So too is the Umno election and Mukhriz has failed to win one of the 'great' VP posts, largely because Najib did not support him and even allowed other candidates, such as cousin Hishammuddin Hussein, to publicly call for the incumbent VPs to be retained for another term.
This, UMNO insiders say, was tantamount to Najib asking Umno member to vote back the existing team, which meant rebuffing Mukhriz.
Najib can now stand up to Dr M should he choose to
When Mahathir decided Mukhriz should go for a vice presidency, he went all out to help his son.
Knowing that it would be tough for Mukhriz to break through Najib’s fortress manned by incumbent musketeers – Zahid Hamidi, Shafie Apdal and Hishammuddin Hussein -- Mahathir publicly announced that his son had only a 50-50 chance to win.
Mahathir blamed this on money politics in UMNO. Some say this was the 'safe ground' that the former prime minister took to in order not to suffer a loss of face that his influence in UMNO had waned over the years.
With Khairy Jamaluddin helming the Youth Wing once again and corruption-tainted Shahrizat Jalil also re-elected the Women's chief, Najib has done well to consolidate his power in Umno.
The 60-year-old Najib can now stand up to Mahathir, should he wish to do so. But chances are Najib is likely to continue to put his priorities on stuff like grand overseas trips and setting up mega deals to boost his family and inner circle.
Door slammed shut on Mukhriz
With hindsight, it is easy to see that it was Najib who tricked Mahathir. And Mahathir knows it, he was lulled into complacency.
To be fair, Mahathir's hands were also tied by the delay in holding the general election, which finally took place on May 5 2013, almost at the end of the Umno-BN's 5-year mandate. He had no choice but to cooperate with Najib so as to assure an Umno-BN victory.
But by holding back the worst of the infighting till after GE13, Mahathir lost the opportunity to put in place the intricate schemes and plots necessary to pull the rug out from under Najib's feet. In the last mile in the Umno-VP race, his supporters just could not kick up enough speed to cut Najib's at the finish line.
Those close to Mahathir say, there is no question of revenge, only a matter of timing - when to exact the vengeance for the hurt and loss of pride from Mukhriz's loss.
They say it is not just about Mukhriz failing to get enough VP votes. The fact is, the most important door in Umno - the gateway to the topmost chamber - has been slammed shut on Mukhriz.
Who will open the door for Mukhriz? Najib? Hisham? Zahid? Would these men be so kind or would they already have started preparing their own heirs for the PM's chair?
And Mukhriz represents the entire Mahathir family and their clan of cronies. They want a Mahathir heir to sit in the PM's office and soon. So it comes as no surprise that Mahathir has started to use his old strategy of calling wolf!
Chinese tsunami and money politics
Without being facetious, perhaps it is a blessing that the Chinese are not allowed to join Umno or they would have been blamed for Mukhriz's loss. And if not by the Mahathir faction, then by the Najib faction. It is laughable, yes, and also sad at the same time because it shows the sheer bankruptcy of political vision in the once-mighty Umno.
Anyway, Mahathir has already grabbed at the next easy straw - money politics! That's the cause of Mukhriz's downfall, says the man who was Umno president for 22 years. If true, he has to shoulder a large part of the blame for not having done enough to stamp corruption in his own party.
Although, this money politics claim was vehemently by the party’s senior people, Mahathir has planted the seed of doubt amongst Umno members that his son would have beaten Hishamuddin, if not for cheating by the Najib faction.
Some say the entire episode of Mukhriz failing to garner enough support is a reminder to Mahathir, harking back to the time when he was kicked out of Umno by first prime minister Tunku Abdul Rahman. Mahathir didn't give up then. It is unlikely he will now.
Mahathir has been calling Najib a ‘weak’ leader, even before the May 5 general election and the October 19 Umno poll. This gambit to tear away at Najib's credibility is likely to intensify soon. Mahathir's underlings and die-hard loyalists have also taken to the blogs and the media to paint Najib in a bad light.
To be fair, they are not wrong. Najib has little to offer Malaysians. He has shown himself to be equally without principles and can back-stab the Chinese, Indians and other minorities as cruelly as Mahathir did. There is no reason for the non-Malays to support Najib.
If Najib had been strong, he would have confronted Mahathir. He would have arrested Mahathir and the Malay extremist group, Perkasa, and jailed them all for sedition.
But chicken-hearted Najib could only try to out 'Malay-ise' Mahathir, because it was far easier to bully the non-Malays than to tell the Malays that Umno had led them down the wrong and the worst path for the past 5 decades!
Malays don't need Mahathir anymore
Straight after GE13, Najib personally blamed the Chinese for his own dismal failure. The rabid Malay-championing role has now been passed over to trusted lieutenant Zahid Hamidi. With this maneuver, the Najib faction has effectively locked out Mahathir.
The Malays don't need Mahathir to champion their rights anymore. They can easily frighten Najib into giving out more privileges than it was ever possible under Mahathir. As for bullying the non-Malays, Zahid Hamidi, the powerful Home Minister, can for sure snarl much more fiercely than a Mahathir in retirement.
As such, these days, it won't be a surprise to catch Mahathir in a pensive mood and reflecting about his past glory. Even so, don't count him out yet. Whatever his faults, Mahathir is a very unique personality, otherwise he wouldn't be called a Devil by so many in the country.
But for Mukhriz, it is different. He has to deal with people every day, make decisions every day. He can't be bitter and reflect on the past when his dad was omniscient.
Many of Mukhriz's mates also say he never wanted this job. He is already 'filthy rich' and like Sarawak Chief Minister's son Sulaiman Taib Mahmud, he may question the need to hang out in a 'kampung' like Kuala Lumpur when the bright lights of Monte Carlo, New York and Paris beckon? Why indeed?
Najib may not be able to reform Malaysia but he will laugh all the way to the bank
There is already a chasm forming between father-and-son, and the father with the current Umno leadership.
Perkasa’s president, Ibrahim Ali has also echoed Mahathir’s dissatisfaction with Umno when he was quoted in a local daily that Umno’s betrayal still hurts. This line of attack will continue to keep Najib on his toes.
Najib will find he won't be able to reform Malaysia or bring the progress the country deserves and longs for. But that may not be his primary aim in the first place. Najib, sad to say, doesn't appear to be a sincere leader. He appears more to be out for the glamor and the goodies.
As such, Najib may welcome the noise from the Mahathir side as it helps him and his clique to mask their 'covert operations' of digging further into the national treasury.
Sg Limau banana peel for Mukhriz to step on
In the Sg Limau by-election, which many have labelled a critical test for Mukhriz, none of the 3 newly elected vice presidents have been active in campaigning for him.
Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin even made a spectacular faux-pas related to diabetes and former PAS leader Azizan Abdul Razak that may cost BN the by-election. Many in Umno are not sure if it wasn't deliberate and to sabotage Mukhriz.
If Mukhriz won Sg Limau, it would immediately raise his stock and make him a hero in Umno. He would be regarded as another shining light for the Malay community. Obviously, this is not what the Najib faction wants. To some in Umno, it is incredible that Najib could announce GST and the removal of the sugar subsidy before Sg Limau's Nov 4th balloting day. They wonder why the Election Commission did not announce an earlier by-election date.
Really, Mukhriz should not fret too much if he loses Sg Limau. He should know who are his friends and who are his foes by now. Tactically, he should highlight and amplify these facts more frequently so as to shield himself from future sabotage, rather than to keep playing the part of the beloved Prince, which he no longer is due to his dad's retirement.
Mahathir - down and almost out
While the focus is on Mahathir and what he can fire off at the Najib faction, the fact is the Najib faction may be even more toxic. They certainly have a much greater arsenal than Mahathir.
With the government machinery behind him, it is actually very much easier for Najib to attack Mahathir than for Mahathir to attack him.
Badawi, being the first new PM after 22 years of Mahathir dominance, couldn't catch on fast enough to counter his old boss.
But 10 years have passed since Mahathir retired, and Mahathir's enemies have been able to read his game and analyze his moves. They know how to neutralize him.
The outlook for Mahathir is no longer bright as far as politics in Malaysia is concerned. The same would apply for Mukhriz.
It looks like Sg Limau may be safe for PAS after all.
Malaysia Chronicle