1 Malaysia logo, no go? — The Malaysian Insider

By The Malaysian Insider

There’s a joke going around political circles which usually applies to Barisan Nasional (BN) politicians. This week, it can also apply to Pakatan Rakyat (PR) leaders. 

Here it goes. 

The International Olympics Council (IOC) has announced a new category in shooting, And Malaysians are a shoo-in to win the gold medal. The category is called shoot yourself in the foot. 

Once again, there appears to be a “raging debate” about 1 Malaysia. This time it’s about the logo, a stylised 1 with elements of the Jalur Gemilang within it. The symbolism is great, even if the concept remains hazy some 20 months after its appearance. 

BN lawmakers are upset that the Selangor government has banned the logo from billboards within the state. They accuse the PR government there of being “destructive”, “arrogant” and the decision was said to be “an abuse of authority”. 

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak said 1 Malaysia was not political but a concept to unify all races and towards nation building. 

The ban itself was announced by Selangor executive councillor Ronnie Liu, not exactly the most popular politician in Selangor, let alone his own party. But the state government has backed him on this and his colleague Elizabeth Wong clarified today the ban applied to business advertisements. 

So what is the debate about? Hue and cry over a logo? 

What about the larger issues of the concept itself? Has 1 Malaysia brought on a People First. Performance Now. culture within the civil service? Is BN better off since the concept and logo came to being? Apart from prettying its convention backdrop?