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Saturday, December 10, 2016

Najib's Rohingya Card

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What can we make of Najib’s presence and participation in the PAS organised demonstration against the Myanmar government’s treatment of the Rohingyas? We heard him roar: do these people think I will sleep? I will defend them not only because they are fellow Muslims but are also human beings. 

Wow, I said. Najib is a good Muslim, good democrat and a good humanitarian. He is the embodiment of his wasathiyah ideology.He is the chosen one. To whom all must pledge unqualified loyalty.

According to the wasathiyah precepts: The Muslim is the standard of measure: he upholds justice, he is fair, sets a good example, he is balanced, never extreme and others look up to to him for adjudication because the good Muslim knows he is judged by his God and Prophet. He must be truthful.

He is none of that. At home he pummels the opposition; imprisons a lady, arrests opposition leaders. He masterminded the embezzlement of billions through 1MDB. He lies to the people. Every spending his government does is done at inflated costs. The economy has bombed, capital flight is increasing, the value of the Ringgit has plunged, our reserves are used up. The country is in a mess- Najib is the architect who divides up the nation along ethnic lines. He has already said it- the next election will be a Malay versus Chinese election.

Najib can never be an example of a good Muslim on the terms of the wasathiyah concept. He is extravagant which runs counter to the proposed example of being thrifty and careful with spending. He advises others to be careful with money, he can’t even control the shopaholic wrecking machine.  

Meanwhile, when he was boasting about his empathy for the Rohignyas, hopefully his drool did not rain on anyone near at that time.

Up to that point I think Malays picture the rohingyas as people who go around selling gemstones, begging at mosque entrances or just stop you on the road, knocking at your car windows asking for money. They are human beings after all huh?

Rather than play along with Hadi, Najib Najib could have given the Rohingyas refugee status. They couldn’t care less to be present at the gathering as told . They were transported there. They were interested in immediate relief. The beggars must have been there too expecting some money to be handed out.They have heard about 1MDB. Maybe they can get something out of the billions carted away.

Najib did not waste the opportunity to make an impression on Hj Hadi. After all they spent some tete-a-tetes  secretly. Its time to openly show everyone in Malaysia, how deep they are. It is good for the Malay/Muslim temperament. It is the wet dream of many Malays. To see the unification of all Malays/Muslims, thieves , saints and sinners. He was seen, almost appearing as if calculated to be photographed by strategically positioned cameramen with smart phones and cameras, touching the arm of Haji Hadi. It seemed a romantic picture.

Haji Hadi was later feted like a royalty, making him appear as the most important person in the PM’s life( after Rosmah of course)

But Najib’s action was questionable. He is PM of this country. This was clearly conduct unbecoming. A PM who is leader of the country participating in a demonstration against a country, a sovereign nation, with which we have diplomatic relations. The question immediately asked, if he is the chief executive of this country, why can’t he do something through the diplomatic channels? Like calling up the ambassador to register Malaysia’s very principled objection about what is happening to the Rohingyas. He can ask our foreign minister to call up the Myanmar ambassador. Or he can ask our ambassador in Yangon to deliver an official Malaysian point of interest or whatever they called it in diplomaticspeake.

Or he can back up his good Muslim, good democrat and good humanitarian self image with more testicular resolve and cut off diplomatic relations with Myanmar.
He does not do all those options available to the PM of a country. Instead he chose to go along with a protest organised by an opposition party. He is cultivating PAS.Indonesian President Jokowi appears smarter and wiser when he chose to discuss the Rohingya issue with Kofi Anan who is appointed to deal with the Rohingya issue by the UN.

The answers are obvious. First, this will be an issue that can arrest the utter dismay and abhorrence of the Malays on his person. He hasn’t come clean with the corruption issue he is facing. 1MDB remains unanswered which only serves to fuel intense revulsion towards the PM.

I hope not a few people missed reading what the Myanmar Times wrote in immediate response to Najib’s pompous religiosity. The Myanmar Times responded with a very had hitting editorial describing the agony Malaysians must be experiencing now as living under the tawdry and sinking regime of PM Najib razak .  it must be like experiencing death by treacle.

The Rohingya assembly which Najib and Hadi came together was described as Najib’s and UMNO’s and PAS action as drowning themselves in a gluey black sea of venality not seen since the days of Marcos.

Najib was doing the classic diversionary tactic to hide the mounting litany of shame. Najib thinks by showing he is someone who is willing to stand up against tyranny, his other worldly sins are forgiven. Maybe Hadi can offer payers to God to forgive Najib. For Najib is a good Muslim, demonstrating support and empathy to fellow Muslims.

Najib is supported by a media that is quickly being ignored because it is fighting against facts with conjectures and makeup stories.
The wife of the Good Muslim is not spared either. Rosmah is described as a shopaholic wrecking ball.

What is Najib to do? Najib’s survival strategy is to mount up Malay chauvinism and marginalise other Malaysians. He finds a convenient instrument in Islam. That is why he is cultivating PAS. As to sidelining non Malay citizens, he has already done that by instructing the Elections Commission to resettle voters along racial lines.

Like all dictators, his solution to all his problems is to amass more power and to apply draconian laws on the opposition. The archaic Sedition Act which he had earlier promised to remove is now enforced more vigorously. Which only goes to show that this PM is running scared. Thus he is grotesquely hypocritical, mouthing what the audience wants to hear, but violates every democratic principles to stay in power.

Posted by Ariff Sabri (with permission)

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