Ants in the pants?

Has BN has run out of ideas to attack Pakatan and is therefore grasping at straws and building ideas based on fantasy? 

Selena Tay, FMT

The Barisan Nasional leaders are acting like ants in the pants of the Pakatan Rakyat leaders. “Ants in the pants” is a Cantonese phrase that is used to describe very irritating or annoying people that are difficult to be rid of.

A few examples are enough to illustrate this point.

The first example comes from Umno’s Kota Belud MP Abdul Rahman Dahlan who is of the view that the accounts of the Pakatan-helmed states needed to be re-checked as something may have been done to enhance the performance of these states for the audit report, which was issued on Oct 15 to all MPs in Parliament.

The Auditor-General had to silence him by issuing a statement that the Auditor-General’s Office is neutral at all times.

Certainly there is no reason to suspect anything amiss as both Pakatan-helmed states and BN-led states had received both kudos and brickbats in the audit report. Of course, BN had the more and bigger blunders than Pakatan, but that is nothing for the former to complain about as it had been governing since Independence and given their skills at governance, it is thus not a surprise.

The raising of this issue clearly shows that BN has run out of ideas to attack Pakatan and is therefore grasping at straws and building ideas based on fantasy.

Another person full of fantasy and illusory ideas is none other than MCA president Dr Chua Soi Lek who is living in constant fear that hudud will be implemented if Pakatan comes to power and he has gone on the warpath against hudud.

Suddenly realising that he has damaged the Malay support for Umno, he has started to put a spin on his words by saying that he is not against hudud per se but only against PAS’ version of hudud.

Hudud is hudud and there is definitely no such thing as PAS’ version of hudud. Obviously, he is now backpedalling by using a foolish excuse to try to dupe the public but he only comes across as being silly.

Hadi Awang, the PAS president who is also the Marang MP, pointed out that “it is a great error to label the Islamic law of hudud as ‘PAS’ hudud” as doing so would equate to labelling the five daily prayers obligated upon the Muslims as “PAS” prayers.

The chairman of PAS non-Muslim wing, Hu Pang Chaw, has remarked that thanks to Chua, the non-Muslims are now interested to find out more about hudud. He gave the example of a PAS fundraising dinner in Kota Tinggi, Johor, where 80 out of the 100 tables were purchased by Chinese and Indians.

Water crisis

The third example of ants in the pants comes from the BN federal government itself which keeps insisting that Selangor, Kuala Lumpur and Putrajaya will soon be facing a water crisis. Hence the need to build the Langat 2 Water Treatment Plant.

PKR’s Gombak MP, Azmin Ali had revealed in Parliament that Selangor had sufficient treated water with 10.2% in reserve, but this was disputed by the Energy, Green Technology and Water Minister, Peter Chin Fah Kui, who had said that the state’s raw water reserve stood only at 0.97%.

Chin, however, said he would propose to the Cabinet for a “laboratory” to be set up for further talks so that an amicable solution can be reached by both parties.

There is no guarantee that water bills will not go up after Langat 2 is constructed.

In Penang, there is constantly a group of people demonstrating against Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng at one time or other. Of course, these people have a right to voice out their grouses so nothing can be done about that save to say that they are like ants in the pants.

Another group of ants is Gerakan which has made silly comments on DAP veteran Karpal Singh’s proposal that only one person contests one seat.

Since March 2008 when BN lost its two-thirds majority in Parliament, Pakatan states have never experienced smooth governance, not to mention that Perak was lost due to a nefarious and diabolically-orchestrated power grab.

BN leaders continue to find faults in Pakatan’s governance. That is fine but there are times when the problems are inherited from BN’s era.

Many a time too, the Pakatan-helmed states had to solve these inherited problems; for instance, the Penang government had to compensate an individual named Tan Hak Ju for the sum of RM40 million in a land matter while the Selangor government had to solve the problem of various abandoned housing projects in Selangor.

One of the abandoned housing projects is located in the parliamentary seat of Selayang in Bukit Botak and PKR’s William Leong has worked hard and finally managed to get the project going again.

Another problem in Selangor is the condominium development near the Batu Caves temple that was approved during the time Selangor was still under BN.

The BN federal government, too, has denied oil royalty payments to Kelantan and now the amount has come up to more than RM10 billion.

At the end of the day, it is clear that BN has continued to throw spanners into the wheels of the Pakatan state governments although compared to Pakatan, BN’s errors are many times worst.