God gave Umno a second lease of life
Muhyiddin has gone and Umno is now in charge. So people are now expecting the Covid-19 pandemic to disappear totally and for everyone’s pockets to be filled with money. People want to be able to holiday at Disneyland in Paris and shop on Oxford Street in London, like before. And if Umno cannot make this happen, then be prepared to be buried for good.
NO HOLDS BARRED
Raja Petra Kamarudin
When Umno-BN lost the general election in May 2018, many thought that was the end of the party that has been around for 75 years. Of course, some would disagree with that statement and will argue that Umno was wound up in 1988 and what we have today is another party that stole the Umno name, and hence is only 33 years old.
Anyway, whether 33 or 75 years old, and whether today’s Umno is the original Umno of 1946, depends on who you talk to. Tunku Abdul Rahman a.k.a. Bapa Merdeka, though, said Umno of 1946 no longer exists and what we have today is Mahathir’s Umno, a copy-cat party — which is why the Tunku refused to join Umno (Baru) and died outside Umno.
To most, however, Umno is Umno and the official status of the party — going by the Registrar of Society’s tafsiran — is of little consequence. The registration certificate of the party hanging on the party’s head office wall is not important. What is important is the spirit and culture of the party and whether that has changed since the founding of Umno in 1946.
For example, the same party has ruled China since it turned communist on 1st October 1949. However, while it may still be the same party for 72 years, in spirit it is no longer the same party. The Chinese Communist Party today is more capitalist than the United States.
So, who cares about names and titles? Today, UK’s Conservative and Labour parties are different only in name. And what’s the difference between the Republican and Democratic parties in the US? Then, closer to home, we have Umno 1946 and Umno 1988. Are the two Umno parties any different?
Umno did not die suddenly in May 2018. It was not like a heart attack. Umno died slowly of cancer over more than 30 years. And, in May 2018, Umno breathed its last.
The man who gave Umno cancer is Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad. After he took over in 1981, he began to rip apart the old culture and values of Umno and he corporatised the party. Umno swapped its feudal values for capitalism. Malaysia took the same route as China did when the Chinese Communist Party declared “to get rich is glorious.”
But Dr Mahathir was not the sole pirate in town. He had a gang, which included Anwar Ibrahim, Tun Daim Zainuddin, and the equivalent of Ali Baba’s 40 thieves. At state level, the plundering was as bad and sometimes worse.
In fact, the plundering did not start in the 1980s when Mahathir, Daim and Anwar were in control of the purse strings. It started much earlier, as far back as the 1960s, which was not long after Merdeka. Hence 20 years before Mahathir took over as prime minister, the looting and plundering had already begun.
How much of the rakyat’s money has been stolen in total? RM500 billion? RM1 trillion? I doubt anyone really knows, but if you were to tell me it was RM1 trillion in total, I would not fall off my chair in shock.
We are talking about 60 years and 13 states plus the federal government. And everyone was looting and plundering. And the wastage of public funds was not confined to just looting and plundering but failed projects and unnecessary spending as well.
So, yes, the country was subjected to mismanagement, transgressions, abuse of power, corruption, and more, for more than half a century. Lim Kit Siang calls Malaysia a failed state, and he is partially right, of course. And he is partially right because Malaysia is rich, so the country has not stopped functioning despite the huge leakages.
Umno’s fall in May 2018 was not because Najib Tun Razak was alleged to have stolen RM100 billion (according to Mahathir, the 1MDB scandal is not RM50 billion but RM100 billion). If it was, then Umno would have fallen in 1999, since Mahathir was alleged to have stolen RM200 billion.
Umno fell because the rakyat finally said enough is enough. It was not 1MDB that brought Umno down. 1MDB was merely the final straw. It was the never-ending series of financial scandals over 60 years from Perlis, down to Johor, up to Kelantan, over to Sabah and Sarawak, and into the heart of Putrajaya.
But now God has given Umno a second lease of life. Umno has been raised from the dead like a phoenix rising from the ashes. And for the next 18 months or so, Umno has the opportunity to prove it deserves to live. What Umno does and say these next few months will determine what happens to the party come GE15.
With the Covid-19 pandemic and the economic fallout because of it bringing misery to the entire world, Malaysians are not so patient and forgiving. The tagline was: Muhyiddin Yassin is blundering bigtime, so he needs to be ousted and Umno needs to take over to save the country.
Well, that has already happened. Muhyiddin has gone and Umno is now in charge. So people are now expecting the Covid-19 pandemic to disappear totally and for everyone’s pockets to be filled with money. People want to be able to holiday at Disneyland in Paris and shop on Oxford Street in London, like before. And if Umno cannot make this happen, then be prepared to be buried for good.