You must remember that it is Najib or Anwar – two individuals impossibly flawed by their years in Umno. Two individuals that are cut from the same cloth by the same self-titled bespoke tailor that was Umno.
Who will get your vote? Najib Tun Razak or Anwar Ibrahim? Will your political affiliation decide your choice or would quality of leadership matters? Honesty, compassion, integrity, confidence and flexibility are all qualities impossible to find in abundance in either of them when political leaders should have all of these qualities – and more.
Najib is at best mediocre. He plods around bemused and befuddled by the unfamiliar situation he now finds around him – Rosmah Mansor, the cut and thrust of Umno and Barisan Nasional politics and his own inadequacies swirl around him in ever concentric eddies that threaten to whirl him away to places unknown.
Anwar does trip the light fantastic at times. A charming chameleon who can make himself to be the person we want him to be with just that hint of sincerity that allows us to think that maybe, just maybe that is the real Anwar. And yet the next day he goes off at a tangent because the political expediency needed in juggling Pakatan Rakyat gives him no other option but to do so.
Will our choices be based on what is good and right and in the best interest of the nation as a whole? Perish that thought. We are humans and as humans, we reserve the right and the privilege of choosing a leader we think will do good to us.
And there my friends lies the confidence and bravado that Najib and Anwar have in their belief that the Malaysian people might choose either of them as prime minister. Surely those right-thinking people among us (of which… ahem… this writer thinks himself as one) would have consigned either of them to that heap where the “not to be resuscitated” sign should tell us that they are both past their use-by-date. But we humans are not creatures of rationality.
But this is Malaysia. We have no others. So Najib or Anwar it is.
Defining our political future
If it was a matter of choosing between Najib and Anwar, then I say that Najib is the lesser of the two men. But the lesser of the two men is now the prime minister of our nation.
Those of you who do not want Barisan Nasional say you are tired of the corruption, the abuse of executive power for political and personal financial gain and the total lack of good governance displayed by BN leaders.
Those who do not wish to see Pakatan in government talks about the impossibility and improbability of having three diametrically opposed political entities (now together within the Pakatan coalition for political gain) working in tandem for the common good of the nation and its people.
How could these three once opposing political organisation be held together just because of their hatred for Umno?
We are moving towards the 13th general election and toward our future with all these dilemmas unresolved – not the best of situations but that is all that we have. The pity of it all is that it will still be with us whether we vote for Najib or Anwar. So what are we to do? What should we do? What must we do? What can we “janji” to do?
We need to move towards good governance. And the bottom line to good governance is a vibrant democracy. Only then will we have sustainable and equitable economic growth and political stability. This we will not have with the present crop of political leaders now in power and even among those waiting to gain or seize political power.
We need to define the culture of our political future. We do not want leaders who seek to gain or remain in power by the manipulations of ethnic or religious sentiments.
There are not just Malays and the “others” in Malaysia. We are all one people. Let us no longer talk about Ketuanan Melayu, the institution of royalty, about educating our children in schools that accentuate their ethnicity while ignoring the realities of a society that now demand equality in opportunities and the personal freedom to decide and express their voice in politics, education and in everything that affects their life and the life of their family and the nation they live in.
We already have independence. We already have national integration a long time ago. Now we want the freedom to go on with our life the best way we can – and the function of government is to facilitate that demand. We want and we will choose a government that can do that.
We will not allow Najib or Anwar to lead us elsewhere. If the two of them want their political kingdom, then their political kingdom must conform to our aspiration of what we want. Who your father is, who you are, what race you belong to, what language you speak, what your religion is and where you are coming from politically no longer matters to us – what matters is that we will have our Malaysia. You ignore these demands at your own peril.