Barisan must change to win back support, says Lee

(The Star) – Barisan Nasional leaders must be more sensitive towards the other races by avoiding championing communal politics and sensitive religious issues.

“Leaders must also stop being arrogant when dealing with the public. Instead they should start concentrating on ways to stimulate the economy during this gloomy economy situation,” said MCA information and communications bureau chief Lee Wei Kiat.

He was commenting on Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Abdul Razak’s call to Barisan leaders to break out of their comfort zone and deal with challenges effectively.

“We fully agree with the Deputy Prime Minister’s statement. Barisan leaders have

to be more pro-active in tackling issues and they must improve their public delivery

system,” he said when contacted in Beijing yesterday.

“We have to walk the talk. In MCA, it is very important for us to always listen to the people and obtain their feedback,” he said.

Lee said that among the changes that MCA had incorporated into its structure was limiting the term of leadership and making its service centres more pro-active.

He also said that MCA was continuously evolving to remain relevant to the people.

In George Town, Gerakan president Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon said that apart from needing a paradigm shift, Barisan should also realign its direction with the people’s aspirations to survive.

In welcoming Najib’s comments, Dr Koh said the coalition had no choice but to reform so as to win back the people’s support, especially the young voters.

“However painful such a paradigm shift may entail, Barisan has no choice but to change or perish,” he said yesterday.

Dr Koh said Barisan had succeeded in bringing development and sustaining peace and stability in the country for the past 50 years, but the achievements had been negated by what was perceived as abuse and arrogance of power, whereby benefits were enjoyed by the privileged few.