A day of reckoning for Najib and his cronies


By Jeswan Kaur, FMT

Today is July 9, 2011, the day that will always give prime minister Najib Tun Razak and his band of cronies goosebumps, for the simple reason that the rakyat is out in solidarity with election watchdog Bersih 2.0, their voices in unison repeatedly demanding that the Barisan Nasional government stop playing dirty at the polls.

The awakening of the ordinary Malaysian started in 2008 and which went on to become the turning point in the history of Malaysian politics. Today’s “Walk for Democracy” further reinforces the belief that the people no longer accept the BN’s crooked ways of claiming power during elections.
With the awakening, however, has come too the fear on the part of the BN of its future come the 13th general election.

The unexpected defeat to the opposition in 2008 proved too much for BN, which until today is still kept busy with its “damage control” or more precisely propaganda measures, all aimed at snatching back whatever power the opposition is currently enjoying.

While BN under president Najib is going all out to foil any attempt to end its reign as the country’s powerhouse, the notion that the rakyat will always and unconditionally support BN has post-2008 turned into a myth.

The people are fed up with the rhetoric of the BN and the abuse of power displayed by Najib with regard to today’s rally. Reneging on his word to allow Bersih 2.0 the space to vent out its frustrations against the BN government, Najib abandoned all modicum of leadership and scooted off to meet the Pope in Vatican, using work as his lame excuse.

Najib also let the rakyat down when he turned bully and gave Bersih 2.0 the go-around in organising today’s rally. While Bersih 2.0 agreed to skip the streets and converge in an indoor environment, choosing the historical Stadium Merdeka as their venue, the authorities turned around and began revealing their true colours.

Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein declared Bersih 2.0 an illegal outfit and rationalised that the rally would be too. But after meeting the Yang di-Pertuan Agong who urged Bersih 2.0 to maintain peace and harmony, the latter respectfully decided to hold the rally indoor.

At one point, the police were even willing to expedite the permit to Bersih 2.0 but on the eve of the rally went back on its words, citing safety reasons.

Bersih 2.0 speaks for the rakyat

It looks like Najib was not paying attention to what Bersih 2.0 chairperson Ambiga Sreenevasan was saying all the while, about why the electoral system needs to be “cleaned up”. All that Najib understood was that the “Walk for Democracy” equalled to his losing power and authority, which was not what Bersih 2.0 was implying.

However, today, with thousands of people coming together to lend support to the cause Bersih 2.0 has been championing, it is proof that all the arm-twisting, lies and high-handed tactics used by Najib to crush the rally have only backfired, with public faith and trust in him and BN having shifted.