Of Late and Latest

By Mohd Prasad Hanif (Secretary PAS Kawasan Klang, Selangor)

Of late, Pakatan Rakyat has been feeling the enormous impact of Barisan Nasional’s offensive. At the grass roots, it is even worse. Demoralized spirit, uneasy friendship, silence and the list goes on. Whatever Barisan Nasional is doing, we are falling into it – hook, line and sinker. 

But we have to struggle on. The differences between PAS and DAP exists and these are not small matters. I am a PAS member and I do not agree with DAP on many issues and likewise DAP will not agree with me on many issues. The bottom line is, it is evident that the component parties in Pakatan Rakyat stand equally as partners and argue with confidence on ideological difference. It is up to each individual leadership to influence and convince the other members of his ideology or his opinion. Each individual leader is allowed to express their opinion and stand by it. Is this not the basis of consensus decision making and freedom of speech?  

Our supporters have a responsibility. Pakatan Rakyat supporters have a responsibility. Pakatan Rakyat’s strength springs from the spirit and goodwill of its supporters. Each of our supporters must show unwavering determination and stoic resolve to ensure that our leaders work together. Yes, unwavering determination and stoic resolve is needed. 

Stop condemning Dato Hassan Ali and Ronnie Liu. It is their right as leaders to have different opinions and stand by them. It is our responsibility to strengthen the coalition by disseminating the correct information – the correct worldview. We have to let the people on the street know that differences in opinions are acceptable, debates should be encouraged and minds should be opened for a different view. When we are able to achieve this, we are doing our part for Pakatan Rakyat. 

How do we achieve this? Disseminate the thought that Pakatan Rakyat stands for justice and equality. Pakatan Rakyat wants freedom of speech and they practice freedom speech and opinion. Pakatan Rakyat wants equality, and they practice equality among themselves. 

It is just not up to the leaders to hold Pakatan Rakyat together. We, the grassroots supporters, should do our part. We have to ensure that the people understand what we stand for. We have to make the people understand that the destruction UMNO and Barisan Nasional has left behind cannot be undone within a matter of months. We should stand fast, unfazed against anything that Barisan Nasional throws at us.  

Mesquita et. al. eloquently describes political survival: 

“Because leaders’ political survival depends on their followers’ support, we might expect that leaders who are more successful in bringing peace and prosperity to their nations will remain in power longer, yet the opposite appears to be true. Democratic governments appear to offer their citizens more peace and prosperity than autocracies do, but autocratic leaders stay in office roughly twice as long as leaders in democratic nations.” 

This is the essence of political survival. Some wonderful ideas as well as some beneficial policies get buried and never implemented in the name of political survival. When politics become a career instead of a position of leadership, we, Malaysians, are the ones who will suffer. Since a truly democratic leader stays in power only for a short period of time, Barisan Nasional can no longer claim the same. So, let Pakatan Rakyat leaders of today establish democracy. In a true democracy, we can change the leaders based on their ability to ensure prosperity for the people. 

Stand by each and every one of the PR leaders. Let us stand behind TG Abdul Hadi, DS Anwar, and Lim Kit Siang. We are being attacked in every possible manner. Straighten the saf! Close the ranks! Stand fast behind your imam and leader! 

The leaders might make mistakes today. Let them learn and let them lead. Let us all prove Lim Kit Siang wrong. PR is not here for only one term. We will not hand the country back to the wolves! When we stand before Allah, he writes not whether we won or lost the battle; but how we fought in the battle.  

Let us unite against the National Front of Evil. Remember, people – Unwavering Determination, Stoic Resolve!