We all know what has happened in Kuala Terengganu. RPK and his band of formidable new media practitioners will be emboldened. Anwar Ibrahim is emboldened. UMNO loses another seat in parliament.
The people of Terengganu have done the opposite of what Dato Najib wishes them to do. His pontificating about how to behave- humble, shake hands firmly, be folksy, wear a sarong, didn’t go down well. He has probably antagonised the Terengganu people, in sufficient number so as to cause them to go over the dark side.
Take his message to eschew education for back slapping camaraderie. The people of Pahang especially Kuantan will understand what I want to say in this example- Dato Najib would prefer the intelligent and hardworking people of Kuantan to elect a person like Hamid Mandela. No education but good with people skills- karaoke sessions, talk-cock sessions and so forth. Problem? These are the wrong people to be in UMNO in the first place.
He prefers UMNO with duds. The people of Terengganu asked- what’s worse than having education and awkward people skills? Answer: NO education and NO people skills. In other words, Dato Najib insults the KT people by asking them to prefer a dud than having a qualified person with awkward people skills.
What have the people of KT shown? They have shown that the qualities of leadership are more important. They have shown they want substance rather than playacting as enunciated by the PM to be. These messages should have a sobering impact on DS Najib unless of course he is insulated from this reality check by dim-witted advisers.
I have written a number of articles regarding UMNO and BN for the KT elections. These were preceded of course by my initial assessment of the situation. I chose to forget what I initially wrote and proceeded to defend UMNO/BN. That was my small contribution to the actual war at ground zero. So when my friend Smalltalk text me a message early on to say that we have lost, I could only manage a muted consoling response. I sent him a message to say I am sorry for the loss as I know he has been slogging since day one.
I remembered I wrote about KT being a Dunkirk for UMNO and then followed by a second uncomplimentary article titled Pomposity vs. Humility. But today, after the loss, I am not going to join some people responding with churlish statements blaming others for this defeat. It’s back to the drawing board for many of us.
Today, on TV Awani I heard the same crap about analysing PAS in terms of UMNO’s thinking. I have already said, it was UMNO who entered the ring as a house divided. There was this political analyst who kept repeating that PAS has its own divisive internal politics. I have discounted such perception by saying; PAS makes its decision on a common platform. Once decided, everyone’s attachment to Islamic ideology will prevail over personal and petty inclinations. In PAS the self is subsumed by the greater good of the party, reducible to everything Islamic.
UMNO hasn’t got that cementing element. It admits it has no ideology. Or more correctly, its leadership has failed to instil an ideology. What does UMNO have?