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Sunday, May 31, 2020

Malaysian politicians lack the iron will of integrity

Malaysiakini

Quite sometime back when I was researching on Singapore and its success, I came across an article on the confrontation between Lee Kwan Yew and the SIA pilots Association (SIAPA) which happened in the 1980s.
The association had grievances over pay and working conditions and initiated an unofficial work-to-rule policy, which means employees will only do the bare minimum required by the rules of their contract.
Due to the unresolved situation, then prime minister Lee Kuan Yew stepped in to rein in the crisis.
What happened later was common knowledge and whether the actions by his government were just or not is debatable, which is not my intention of writing this article.
What inspired me most about Lee Kuan Yew was about his firm resolve in giving the ultimatum to the pilot association to go back to work and restore discipline.
He was not willing to be hijacked by behaviours that could be detrimental to the operations and standards of the airline.
If the pilots persisted with their behaviour, he told them that he did not mind grounding the airline and restarting it again without them. The pilots ultimately agreed to comply.
They did it because the man they were dealing with was a man of integrity and iron will, besides having a strong mandate of Singaporeans.
In his subsequent speech to the public, he brought up the issue and said that those who govern Singapore should have this iron will.
It showed a man who was willing to restart all over again because of his principles against forces whose behaviour could break up a national asset that took years to build.
How can we distinguish a leader like Lee Kuan Yew who had resolve and principles unlike politicians in this country?
Here is where we go back to our domestic politics. We are seeing a number of recorded tapes and pictures being leaked out in the Bersatu civil war.
We see pictures of how crooks and traitors and a leader who was charged with corruption and whose party lost in the 14th general election is seated with the prime minister at the time in their conspiracy to bring down the Pakatan Harapan government.
One wonders if former prime minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad was sincere in keeping his promises and had the iron will to remain in the Harapan coalition, then why were these bunch of traitors in his residence?
Then there are current Harapan leaders who are working towards at least getting 129 MPs to their side.
The question is, will there be reverse jumping of political frogs who might not be happy that they did not get GLC or ministerial positions? Or have some of them become born-again politicians?
If the so-called MPs who might be joining forces with Harapan becomes a reality, what is the guarantee they will stay on till the next general election and after that?
What is clearly understood in the current political turmoil is the lack of leaders with the iron will to break from the past and start all over again in building a new culture of politics where the people’s mandate matters.
Currently, the Bersatu civil war and the type of governance we see in Perikatan Nasional is all about the self-interest of certain members of Parliament which reveals a deep-seated corrupted system of governance where people could be bought over by positions.
Malaysian leaders should learn from the former Singaporean leader who was willing to start all over again to safeguard what is right and legitimate.
Do our current political leaders of PN and Harapan have such iron will? Certainly not. They are just manoeuvring to regain what was lost. - Mkini

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