Najib: BN ‘victims of own success’ 

Barisan Nasional president Najib Tun Razak assured Gerakan that its losses in Penang are a sign of BN’s successful policies which brought “changes to mind, atitudes and values” of the younger generation. 

Anisah Shukry, FMT 

Barisan Nasional was a “victim of its own success” in the past two general elections, Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak told its embattled component party partner, Gerakan today.

In a bid to console the party after its bitter showing in the May 5 polls, Najib said:  “With our successes, we developed this country not just physically, but in terms of human capital and intellectual development.

“This has brought changes to the minds, attitudes and values of society today, especially the younger generation…

“Thus we have become a victims of our own success. And we must change.

“I have initiated this process by introducing the concept of transformative leadership in the government and in the party.”

Najib, who was speaking to delegates at the 42nd  Gerakan National Delegates Conference, attributed the growing support for the Opposition to BN’s success in allegedly developing the minds of the younger generation.

Gerakan suffered an embarrassing defeat at the May 5 polls when only one of the 11 candidates it fielded for a Parliamentary seat managed to win. Out of its 21 candidates contesting for state seats, only three emerged victorious.

The party also failed to wrest its former stronghold, Penang, from the DAP.

However, Najib said today the loss was not Gerakan’s fault, insisting again that it was a sign of BN’s “success”.

“Gerakan’s political base, Penang, was a beacon of light. The Gerakan state government developed Penang into a state not only famous for its tourism, but for becoming a magnet for foreign direct investment during the 70’s,” said Najib.

“This success has resulted in the situation today, where, ironically, Penang has become a challenge for us (to win back), not because of our failures, but because of the successes of the BN parties’ policies.”

Najib said that BN would continue to reject communal politics and maintain a “moderate, progressive, centrist, inclusive and fair stance”, to win back support for the ruling coalition.

He also stressed that the BN parties had room to improve and must adapt to the changing political landscape so as to be seen as a relevant, vibrant and reflective of the voice of the younger generation.

“Most of our problem lies with our ability to communicate, about selling what we are doing to the people,” he added, claiming that the Opposition coalition had managed to hoodwink the rakyat with their untruths.

“Why is a lie being swallowed wholesomely? I am looking into this… is it a problem of trust deficit? Are they trusting the opposition more than BN? Those are the questions and we have to find the solution.”