Thursday, April 22, 2010

Hulu Selangor – Do or die for MIC

The Hulu Selangor by-election may be seen as is a public referendum of sorts on a number of issues. Among them are the assessment of Najib’s 1 year as PM especially his 1Malaysia policy, liberalization of the economy and the ability of the Umno-led BN government to bring change. It will also be a measure of the level of support for the opposition Pakatan Rakyat in particular PKR which has been plagued by the defection of a number of its members, the satisfaction of the people in PR ruled Selangor and most of all it will be the gauge of the people’s eagerness for a two-party system of governance.

The Hulu Selangor by-election is not about roads and drains nor is it about water and electricity. It is not about the personal habits of the candidates. It is about sending the right person to parliament where national policies are formulated and approved. It is about maintaining a strong opposition in parliament to ensure accountability and transparency in the formulation and implementation of sound policies that benefits the people at large. The people of Hulu Selangor must decide which of the two candidates will best fulfill these criteria in the highest legislative body.

After two years the people should be well aware of the advantages of having a strong opposition. The various pledges by the government to bring change are indirectly the result of the salient pressure by a formidable opposition. The 1Malaysia policy is the result of the opposition platform of a multiracial approach which promises to do away of racial politics. Similarly the NEM is also due the opposition’s pledge to eradicate race-based economic policies. The fight against corruption, the halt on unnecessary mega projects and bucking up of the various public agencies are the result of the government’s ‘fear’ of the strong opposition. The healthy competition between the ruling and opposition parties will definitely bring long term benefits for the people.

This is the first time in the history of the nation that a strong and formidable opposition in parliament. It was due to the wisdom and maturity of the people who made that possible at the last general elections. I am certain the same wisdom and maturity will prevail for the voters of Hulu Selangor to do the right thing come this Sunday.

Besides these, the by-election may well decide the survival of MIC, the third largest component party in the BN. The dissatisfaction of the Umno members in the constituency with its former candidate Datuk G.Palanivel, who is non-other than the number two in MIC was a significant indicator of the people’s aversion for the Indian party that suffered heavy losses in the last general elections. It was after much arm-twisting diplomacy that the Umno members agreed to allow the MIC to field its candidate, Kamalathan, against the wishes of many on the ground.

It is very sad that Kamalanathan has to present himself as Kamal to the Malays, Nathan to the Indians and Than to the Chinese. It was the height of hypocrisy that the DPM himself has to stoop low to describe Kamalanathan’s name as symbolizing 1Malaysia.After 52years of independence, it is deeply disturbing that a legitimate citizen cannot be accepted as a Malaysian. It reflects a failure of our system of communal politics.

The Hulu Selangor by-election is a do or die battle for Samy Velu and his MIC. Even the PM, who was mainly responsible for allowing the MIC to contest against the wishes of many in own party who wanted the seat to be given to Umno, warned the MIC to ensure its candidate wins the election at all cost. A loss for Kamalanathan may be a small setback for BN but a fatal blow for the MIC and its long-serving president, who has been openly rejected by the Indian community. All attempts at rejuvenating the party after its massive loss in the last general elections have failed due to Samy refusing to step down despite severe pressure from within and outside the party.

The credibility of the MIC is at its lowest and it needs massive rehabilitation to regain its past status as the sole and undisputed representative of the Indians in and outside the government. Two years after its collapse we are certain that this rehabilitation can never be brought about by the existing leadership. It needs a new beginning now to bring about the changes that the community requires and judging by what is happening there is no hope for the revival of the party.

The MIC must win this by-election if it wants to survive. The party is dying and a loss for its candidate will only accelerate its demise. Umno will never entrust future seats to the MIC if it fails to deliver Hulu Selangor this time around. It is sad that the future of the MIC,a founding member of the Alliance and the BN, and a party that was in the blood of every Malaysian Indian, is to be determined not by them but by Umno.

1 comment:

Joe said...

You should watch the entertainment stage show organised by MIC in KKB. Hahahaha probably Indians can be still bought over by Tamil songs and shows. What a pity.

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