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Saturday, 31 January 2009

The Rise of Moneyocracy in UMNO

Dato Najib has said it. UMNO will not abolish the various UMNO ‘wings’. He said it is too drastic a measure. He was responding to Tengku Ahmad Rithaudeen’s suggestions on UMNO’s structural set up. He was joined by other notable UMNO leaders in saying that.

The main issue as Dato Najib rightly says is money politics. Appeasing and consoling pemudas, puteris and wanitas should not overwhelm our focus on the baneful effects of money politics. But undue attention to assuage hurt feelings in the wings will do just that. Deflect our attention from the main issue.

The main issue here is, are we willing to compromise a system which we set out to do? All right thinking UMNO members are united in purpose to set up a political system that brings up this country. The integrity of that system depends, among other things, on ensuring nothing undermines it. Corruption, if allowed will eat into the foundations of that system. In that system, UMNO places itself as the principal enforcer. UMNO compromises the system and becomes a willing participant to the decay, if it is hesitant to be firm on corruption.

It must start therefore by cleaning its own stables. It is a Herculean task. The MACC with full political will is the shovel for that task. UMNO will not escape ridicule and disrepute if it does anything that curtails the effectiveness of the MACC. That would be equivalent of giving a gun to the Disciplinary Board, but no bullets to shoot with. Ku Din as chairman of UMNO’s Disciplinary Board swallows its own vomit, if it holds back from unleashing its full force on corruption. Why go after the small fries? It is an open secret that all the major posts in UMNO are being fought out on the battlefields of Moneyocracy. I am thankful to the blogger who goes by the name Raison d’être who introduces me to this term.

We have set out to establish a system to build UMNO into a respectable party to represent Malay interests provided also we have not compromised the nation’s interests. Snuffing out money politics in UMNO is not just an exercise of showing we are righteous. It must be accepted as an imperative to preserve the integrity of UMNO. Once that integrity is compromised by a practice such as endorsing money politics, the foundations on which UMNO stands will crumble. Sloshing our way through with money is not the UMNO and certainly not the Malay way.

That is the essence of his musings, obtainable if serious gloss is applied. On the other hand if we are superficial, if our constitution is one with a shallowness of the mind, we will be quick to dismiss Ku Din’s suggestions as the musings of a senile mind. We will just be plebeian if we take Ku Din’s remarks at nominal value. In the absence of a firm counter rebuke from the UMNO leadership at the show of defiance by representatives of ‘2500’ delegates, I am inclined, to believe the present UMNO leadership is superficial and has not got a clue on what is happening.

The scourge of UMNO, is money politics. That has been decried since 30 years ago. Since that time too, UMNO has been powerless or even unwilling to stem out money politics. The last UMNO gentleman, Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah was willing to become a victim rather than capitulate under the weight of Moneyocracy. For that, he is viewed as a dangerous gadfly even by UMNO members. with regards to money politics, UMNO appears to be directionless.

Indeed, UMNO is seen as befudging the issue of money politics. Dato Najib says that solution lies in effective policing and infusing values in UMNO. These are big words. But then Dato Najib is a big figure. He must speak in grandiloquent terms- policing and values. If those exhortations and prayers were written down, I would have to say; they have not even dried up, when they are already savaged.

All right thinking UMNO members in particular and Malays in general should register their profound condemnation and disgust at the antics of a group of putera and pemuda UMNO rebuking Pak lah for allowing the MACC to carry out its job. One protester even shouted pejoratively that Pak Lah is a coward. Surely that behaviour was beyond the bounds of decency.

What is more offensive to our collective decency was the open embrace of corruption as a means to secure power and positions. What else can explain their vehement protestations on MACC?

The leaders of the group staging their protests to the UMNO leadership, say they represent 2500 youth delegates all over the country. But please tell us, which 2500 delegates? Are they the delegates from the underbellies of UMNO made up of the UMNO members devoid of any iota of honour? Are they, those faceless members from the cawangans, mat rempits, enforcers and the UMNO lumpen-proletariat? Do they comprise those whose means of making extra money is the continuance of the present UMNO system? And what appears to be the system which they rise up in stout defence? Are they the 2500 mute delegates who agree in unison that it is all right to resort to Moneyocracy?. I hope, this is NOT the new UMNO ideology deriving its legitimacy from the hallowed traditions of UMNO. Mati Lah UMNO macam ini.

12 comments:

kuldeep 31 January 2009 at 11:48  

Its so simple..."fish rots from the head."
UMNO must hv LEAD FOR CHANGE not just the CHANGE FOR LEAD thats coming in march...the leadership must bear in mind that the country has been in a vast wilderness for the last 8 years...no leadership,no clear direction with lots and lots of dreaming and rhetoric.GLC head honchos are paid millions for achieving half baked KPIs.PR companies and consultants are paid millions to launch fabulously sounding schemes.
Pak Lah launched the Penang Second Bridge in Nov 2006 with a projected cost of Rm 3 billion...more than 2 years later nothing is achieved and the cost has ballooned to Rm 4.6 billion.
I am an UMNO member too..I am ashamed that our leader is so ineffective but when delving a bit and finding out the reason for the Rm 1.6 billion price increase and recognising the shadows that flickers in the background I realise that Pak Lah is not that stupid.And ofcos I read about submarines etc etc.
My Ketua Pemuda Bahagian drives a Cayenne..quite a step up from his Rexton?And my ketua bahagian hv 3 kids studying in Australia..which is not too bad for a BX contractor with no current contracts.
So,Sak...its not the rise of moneyocracy but the rise FOR moneyocracy.
And the only way for UMNO to change stripes is to do a total deskinning process>>no honorifics,no pomp n pageantry,ketua bhgn and senior bhgn ppl gets no govt post or contracts...

Navi 31 January 2009 at 12:21  

Dato',

Looks like the top guns in UMNO do not want changes before their positions are confirmed. Looking at the report in STAR (31st January) the supreme council has yet to make a decision on the quota system and has yet again pushed the issue for a later date. Are Najib, Muhyuddin, Mohamed2 and others really serious of reforming UMNO and getting rid of 'money politics? Doesn't appear so.

Anonymous,  31 January 2009 at 12:48  

UMNO top leaders will never want to listen to the disciplinary board. The D.Board have to tow to their wants and fancies!
I propose the Disciplinary Board be abolished. They're just there for show. What they propose don't matter!!Why bother to have them then??
To just goreng the ikan bilis??

Anonymous,  31 January 2009 at 13:23  

Dato,

Yr on-going crusade for the reformation of umno is commendable.

But... but ..the ill of umno is more than moneyocracy!

Raison d’être who introduces moneyocracy to distinguish it from money politic ( not the one as interpreted by the umno people)

Deep down within the multiple layers of onion skins lies the origin of its evil existence - ketuanan melayu.

Why?

Money is the driving force of every modern endeavours. Whether social-political &/or religion. Whether the ultimate intention is good &/or evil. Its existence is only a mean to an end! Money politic is everywhere!

Imagine umno with NO ketuanan melayu BUT Bangsa Malaysia as its goal. There will be that much less in-fighting for posts via extreme racial histrionics. Higher calibre of personnel will be attracted to the party via intense moral undertakings to uplift the Malaysians of all races. Not the present bunch of 'jaga pintu', rent-seekers & short-changers. These manipulators have NO moral contents & real governing qualifications, so to speak. Thus to maintain their hold of power moneyocracy is the natural outcome. Fighting for Agama, Bangsa dan Negara (ABN) is the least on their mind. Present extravaganzas is everything, here-after be damned .

Granted - with the shifting of bull-eye towards Bangsa Malaysia, & NBA, there will still be money politics (do note the term used). But the field is NOW very wide open. More intense competitions among calibre 'politicians' of various races for the GOOD of Malaysia makes feudalistic & mono-ethnicism that much harder to sell.

For the worst of it, the money now comes from Malaysians for the candidacies of all Malaysians. Rather than with the ali-babaism (admit it) now misguided within the umno moneyocracy & its on-going musical-chair oligarchy within the so called Malays.

So yr call of

'... set out to establish a system to build UMNO into a respectable party to represent Malay interests provided also we have not compromised the nation’s interests.'

should go deeper to

'... set out to establish a system to build UMNO(United Malaysia National Organisation) into a respectable party to represent Malaysian interests.'

The current animal known as umno is history, & should be leave as that! Good for nostalgic as in reminiscence. Resurrection in whatever form is FUTILE & detrimental to the well-being of Malaysia, despite the calls of some umno died-hards.

So Dato, work yr magic for the good of Malaysia especially during this global trying time.

gwlnet

Anonymous,  31 January 2009 at 13:24  

I can sense Ku Din frustration when he gave that press interview. He is actually looking up and shout, "SAVE UMNO' but someone just whispered NO! Just to paraphase Rorschach.

Nevermind, the end is the beginning.

sepadu,  31 January 2009 at 13:49  

Dato

Saya harap saya tak selalu sangat atau menyibuk on your blog but this is a subject of special interest to me.

I like your phrase "MACC with full political will" - you hit the nail roundly on the head (or squarely, if it's a square-headed nail - even nails have different kinds of heads!).

In the absence of instructions, top Government Officers will go by the known or assessed thinking and preferences of the political masters. The Public Services Department and the various authorities responsible for the posting of Officers to important posts choose those who would be acceptable to the Ministers concerned. They must be able to exercise their discretion on sensitive subjects. Often to be safe, matters are left in the
"Keep In View" or KIV trays that we often saw on Officers' desks
pre-IT age, until decision-making signs on controversial issues become clearer.

Money politics cases are certainly controversial. There must be the political will, the kind of leader who initiates actions, even gives instructions, rather than wait for advice and recommendations from the bureaucrats or the "toothless" Disciplinary Board/ Committee.

With due respect, re money politics, I wonder how many "right thinking UMNO mmembers" there are at present. I hope it is a significant majority or, at least, a majority. If so, there's hope.

I seriously doubt "the present UMNO leadership ... has not got
a clue on what is happening". No doubt in yester years there were many Seri Amar Di Rajas who would tell the Ruler only good things but this is the IT age. And leaders now want to count on,
and do count, the votes of delegates and members who might get to become delegates. So, I'm quite sure they keep tabs and do come across a few tembelangs here and there.

The issue is still and will continue to be POLITICAL WILL to eradicate money politics. I'm afraid I don't see the prospect
of that coming out in the near future. I hope to be proven wrong on this.

Your attempts to highlight these problems are commendable. You have my full support as a concerned citizen. I hope the political will emerges and becomes evident soon.

Best wishes.

Peter,  31 January 2009 at 15:58  

Just ask anyone anywhere and any place. If one is so free to weld and get billions and can enrich himself from a small developer to one that able to buy International banks and easy to get away with it, you think these kind of guys will allow themselves only to get monthly salaries?

The system just do not punish anyone who toe the line. So why be so stupid? Enjoy while you can.

If the very head is not able to ... how do you expect those under him all the way down to the policemen able to?

Anyone thinking this can change and away from the drug called money is pure wishful thinking.

Guys here and almost everywhere is still thinking there is hope for UMNO to be out of these woods.

...keep dreaming.

It has gone too too deep.

Make hay while sun shines.

kuldeep 31 January 2009 at 16:23  

Peter is very correct.."easy to get away with it,the money is the drug,system does not punish..." and all the jazz of change is wishful thinking.

Its a very frightening prospect.My memory is of Anwar in slippers moving on to handmade italian suits.My memory is of the Tun Razak's bushjackets migrating to the colorful and very unique "casual" shirts that najib wore during the KT by-elections.WYSIWYG...

My memory is the fact that the highest paid individual earns no more than 15 times the lowest paid growing now to a divide of 1000 times or more.

We idolise the American way of doing things without the moral fortitude that checks and balance.Myb we shld ask Tuan Guru Nik Aziz about his mgmt beliefs.

Anonymous,  31 January 2009 at 17:19  

How could we talk about not being crazy about money when success of individual is only being measured by every level of our society basing on one's material gain.
In our country, it has been protrayed those with authority will eventually be very successful. Many have received various recognition and honours for becoming rich. The process of accumulating wealth illegitimately had never been a concern by majority of our people in the past. This is especially relevant within UMNO and in fact most believe that its their right congruent to the rights of Malays under the NEP. We have to go back to basics and take a serious review of the current system vis -a-vis the one propelled by Tuan Guru Nik Aziz.

Anonymous,  31 January 2009 at 17:20  

Dato' It is amusing that you have chosen to title this piece " The Rise of Moneyocracy in UMNO" It gives the impression that money politics in UMNO is a recent phenomena when all the discussions on this blog and elsewhere condemns vehemently a malaise that is entrenched as an insititution in UMNO politics. Perhaps your article can be retitled "The CURSE of Moneyocracy" no?

kuldeep 31 January 2009 at 23:31  

Even the fittest and ideal human specimens gets cancer...it starts somewhere specific and slowly grows and grows...
If one is lucky and gets it removed at the earliest stage then the threat is removed.Of cos hv to chk to ensure no relapse etc etc...Many ex-cancer patients are leading very healthy lives.
I am certain UMNO has cancer but not too sure at which stage?Has it gone to the brains yet or still smouldering in the nether regions?
Any doctor in da house?(Those instant doctors pls do not try to answer )

Anonymous,  1 February 2009 at 02:00  

Hi SAK,
You really akayed umno with your findings of moneyocracy .These people are nt going to change.It's no turning back for them.
How to you change a party that is so corupt to the core?Forget about these guys joinning the party because of love for the malay race and party.It's crap you know.Umno is lucky there are now running the country but my bet is that come next election they will most be probably buried to the ground.
The people are not fools anymore !We will witness a new trend in Sarawak soon!

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