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Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Zaid: Malaysians will do anything for a free meal

Scrutiny of the characters of Malaysians, in light of their appetite for cash, free meals, will indicate outcome in next general election, says former minister.
zaid-freemealPETALING JAYA: Zaid Ibrahim says he just cannot understand the psyche of Malaysians in general, “from the men on the street to the professors in the universities”, and what’s important to them.
The former minister lamented the situation of how so many people took the trouble to go to Putrajaya to attend Prime Minister Najib Razak’s Hari Raya open house last week, and did not seem to care about the important issues afflicting our country.
“They don’t seem to care about stolen property, about cover up and abuse of power, so long as they have a free meal. And in some cases promotions.
“I reckon they all thronged there in the hot sun because they want to show respect and admiration to the prime minister and his wife. Perhaps I should examine the psyche of Malaysians generally,” Zaid said in a blog posting today.
He was responding to reports of about 75,000 people attending the PM’s open house, saying that he was tempted to have an open house as well, but could only afford to have no more than 100 guests.
“I normally do not do a Hari Raya open house, with the last one in 2014, because of financial reasons.
“Nowadays, caterers charge from RM40 to RM60 per head for food and drinks, and that is for a normal menu.
“After reading about the prime minister’s successful open house, I feel tempted but of course, I’m not using taxpayers money to foot the bill,” Zaid said, adding that he hoped the PM’s aide will let the public know how much was spent to feed the 75,000 guests at Seri Perdana.
“At RM60 per head, I suppose RM5 million will do fine, not to mention the cost of preparation of the official residence, and the musical band accompanying the PM and his wife singing ‘Anak Kampung’.”
Zaid, who joined DAP earlier this year, also hoped the opposition would not follow suit and host such lavish open houses, urging them to pay from their own pocket if they had such intentions.
The former de facto law minister said the mosques should also touch on the character of Muslims instead of saying what is already known, in their sermons.
“The Raya sermon at the mosque I attended neglected to analyse this character of the ummah.
“The talk was about how powerful and merciful Allah is, something we know all too well.
“Next year, why not talk about the character and personality of Muslims in this country.
“Some introspection will be good in this election year. Examine what are things that are important to the Muslims.
“Careful scrutiny of the characters of Malaysians, in the light of their appetite for cash and free meals, will be indicative of the outcome of this coming election,” he said. -FMT

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