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Sakmongkol ak 47

Friday, 24 December 2010

Warning signals for UMNO

At 69% approval rating, that is good. I have no doubt that PM Najib enjoys widespread acceptance. I agree that he has done not bad too considering that he inherits a cabinet entrusted upon him by Pak Lah. By and by, there have been no major changes in UMNO leadership structure across the states and bahagians and no major changes in cabinet composition. Old faces serving Pak Lah are still around and faces that we are not sure of being in there in the first place are still around. Especially those wet behind the ears ministers and deputy ministers.
Shaziman Abu Mansor for instance as full minister who seems more adept at antagonizing the civil servants at KKR. Behind the boyish innocence, there lurk some more basic instincts. Its difficult to stay pristine supervising a ministry in charge of million ringgit contracts. Of what useful purpose for example is the deputy youth head of Pemuda UMNO in the team? A more sensible replacement for this fellow is the present head of UDA- Norjazlan Mohamed Rahmat. He has the right values and capabilities to represent UMNO.
But have we looked at UMNO's approval rating? If PM Najib's rating is higher than UMNO which I believe it is, then there is something inherently wrong in UMNO. Thus the only salable product in UMNO now is Dato Najib.
So we have ONLY one salable product. But this product can be sullied by the eager-to-please kitchen advisers. As Najib becomes more imperial and not easily accessible, he is also blocked from receiving reality checks. The only information going to him is filtered by a coterie of advisors. Asked why he is not replacing them with a new team, Najib answered these boys are utterly loyal to him.
Big mistake. That however doesn't necessarily translate into winning votes. He has to get a new team simply because of being in an altogether different position. He is now number One. Loyalty can be rewarded by other means. Retire them off with sustainable business for instance.
We can't win the country riding on the coattails of one fellow. Approval ratings based on a person makes our destiny dependent on that person. What happens if the ratings go down next month?
We are faced with the question- is Najib the time teller or the clock builder? The approval ratings seem to point out he is the former. This spells problems for UMNO. It means UMNO lacks the elements to make it an enduring and lasting organization.
The divide between Najib's ratings with that of UMNO offers no comfort and respite for UMNO.
Is the 6 months suspension of Anwar Ibrahim a strategic move in the sense that it improves the standing of Najib and the government? I think not. PM Najib must have been ill advised by his coterie of eager- to- please advisors. Damn those advisors. They must have been thinking suspending Anwar is a boon to Najib. Or they are doing a favour to Najib.
What it has done immediately is to cancel out the recent internal problems within PKR. Those disillusioned suddenly found common grounds to rally behind Anwar. Anwar will be able to weave a story that this is another of those inventions manufactured by those in power to destroy him. Unfortunately for Najib and the government, this story line resonates well with the people.
Two, you have actually given Anwar a 6 months head start to campaign for elections. He and his people are now able to go around the country to explain their side of the story. What will the UMNO machinery do? It does nothing much to answer the Anwar juggernaut.
Unanswered, what Anwar and his people say will only bring misery on UMNO. Remember the black eye episode? People, even UMNO mid-level leaders in Najib's own Bahagian went around distributing Anwar's blackened eye incident. But his eager to please local leaders kept telling Najib everything was under control. They could have gotten away with their glib lies except for the 241 majority verdict. The same lies are being presented to Najib at the moment.
What about UMNO being accused of abandoning its role as voice of the Malay people? That role has been surrendered by default to Perkasa. It never was nor will it be about Ibrahim Ali. But what Ibrahim Ali has done is to steal the thunder that has been the domain of UMNO since 1946. To articulate about Malay interests as intelligent as it can. In the hands of Ibrahim Ali, the Malay interest which could have been packaged as rational politics is being presented in the raw sewage form- spurning and scaring people.
Who is at fault there? We can't expect Najib to do everything. The fault lies with the other top leaders and ketua bahagians and the information chiefs.


OneMalaysian,  24 December 2010 at 18:12  

Dear Sakmongkol

Those who observe political history cannot help but notice that seemingly dominant, irreplaceable political parties that were at the centre of their countries independence or modern history eventually declined, disappeared, got eclipsed, became irrelevant, and before reinventing themselves after losing power for a while. Think about the Congress Party of India, the Kuomintang in Taiwan and Golkar of Indonesia. At the height of their power and influence, who would have dared predict that each could eventually decline?

Perhaps UMNO can lay claim to the honour of being in continuous power for the longest period of time, albeit in a coalition that it dominates. But for how long more can UMNO defy the tug of history? No one knows, but history tells us that no matter how high a stock may fly, one day it will have to come down to earth (an Arab proverb). That may not be a bad thing for Malaysia. A change is always good, even to a worse government, because it would immediately make us yearn for the return of UMNO/BN to offer us a better deal. That is the essence of a true 2-party system, both vying for the votes or the people.

Anonymous,  24 December 2010 at 18:25  

Another example ;

Sime sued their ex CEO and others in regards to the O&G contract losses.Reading the affidavits it would seem the Board of Directors were hoodwinked.thus absolving them of any wrong doings i.e pristine reps untouched.

However,in trying to achieve a moment of glory the flood gates inadvertently opens.Now,rakyat can ask the question..why stop with Sime.Lets go for the rest
>Azman and his Pantai
>DSIJ with his oil hedge
>Pardas misadventures in Qatar
>AmirSham overpaying for Indo bank
etc etc...
So,is the various BODs of these companies not going to follow the good example set by Sime darby?If thety don't,can it be construed as dereliction of their duty as BOD?SD have set the very clear example and govt can't play favorites.

Thus,short term and narrow thinking can create numerous follow up issues.Lets have more broad based and rational thinking..not band aids and hurrahs as the guiding light.

PANJI HITAM 61 24 December 2010 at 20:36  

"Damn those advisors. They must have been thinking suspending Anwar is a boon to Najib. Or they are doing a favour to Najib. "

Well said, Dato... failing which Najib will be digging his own grave.

PANJI HITAM 61 24 December 2010 at 20:41  

Spot on, anon 1825.

We can kill many birds by throwing
Nor Yaakop out.

George Choo 24 December 2010 at 22:51  

Dear Sak, when you talk about rating where Najib have a higher rating than Umno, you remind me of BONDS issued by Petronas which have a rating that is much much hiher than the Bonds issued by the govt of Malaysia.

The Petronas Bonds is like a PREMIER LEAGUE BONDS whereas the BONDS issued by the govt of Malaysia is a second division Bonds.

This is due to the fact that Petronas is a financially sound conglomerate while govt of Malaysia is SAD TO SAY bankrupt.

Asam Pedas,  24 December 2010 at 23:29  


What you are addressing is about politic of DS Najib and UMNO perhaps to survive another 50 years ruling the country. How about taking this country to advance in the next 50 years? Unfortunately to ordinary folks they appear to be off tangent from each other. That can't be good to the nation;isn't it?

Anonymous,  25 December 2010 at 08:44  


All the revelations and the deception of UMNO and it's BN allies only depresses me further as a member of the Rakyat.

I guess is part of the evolving process whereby these parties will definitely be kicked out...after their final hurrah


Anonymous,  25 December 2010 at 09:03  

"loyalty can be repaid by offering a sustainbale business?
OH my gosh, is this the way things work in bolehland?
But i guess then there is nothing to be surprised.
I posted a comment in the previous article of yours but i guess it didnt meet the censorship boards criteria.Hope this one makes the cut.
Nevertheless with regards to this article, there is absolutely NO WAY , NOT IN THE NEXT 1000 YEARS FOR THAT MATTER, THAT THE RULING GOVERMENT OF THE DAY WOULD BE REPLACED.
so no need to write about the warning signals.All this hype is simply overated.

Melayu Baru,  25 December 2010 at 10:18  

Assalamualaikum Dato' Sak,

Taking an analogy from computer, UMNO is an outdated operating system.

It is DOS in the age of Windows 7, Mac OS, Linux. It just doesn't have the clue on how to move on to these new operating system. It add some GUI elements (some forward thinking people - although I wouldnt put Najib there), but the base operating system is still DOS.

So it operates in the only way it knows. First, government knows best is still alive and kicking. The GUI says - no more era of government knows best. Then you get hit by many unilateral decisions (insultingly during UMNO's meeting). This MRT being the latest case.

Secondly, the government of UMNO need people to be ignorant, and blissfully unaware of what is going on. They need to keep the FELDA and kampung people unaware that the government is effing their kid's future. Ignorant people are pliant. They need the government to give 'development', and tell them they are the only one that can give it (Re remark from Sarawak Minister to the Ibans)

Thirdly, the old operating system cant debate. If you challenge them to a debate they start to do so loudly, sinking the voice of reason. I remembered the pro ISA demonstrating in anti ISA event - they were asked to debate, and simply refuse. Some of your fledglings on this blog, notably 'a diplomant's offspring' fits comfortably here.

The old operating system sits on culture of feudalism. The new operating system sits on survival of the fittest. Look at the ketua bahagian power base all the way down. It is based on patronage. New leaders with better ideas are ignored if they cant take care of the interest of their yes man.

This old operating system isnt compatible with today's world. The old operating system is standing on the stump declaring its superiority against others. The world have shown that outdated OS will be kicked out. Golkar, Congress, LDP - are all gone.

You know this, UMNO is blissfully ignorant, and I pray hard (and work hard) to ensure that they will not be in power - maybe not in the next GE, but the one after that. Maybe two, maybe three, maybe ten - I want to kick out out this government by making people see through the deceit. Im just afraid it's too late when people realized they need to kick UMNO out earlier.

My kids future is much better without UMNO in power. Therea are no more looters, grand lawbreakers, incompetence and syok sendiri leaders.

Melayu Baru

Anonymous,  25 December 2010 at 13:21  

Dato' Sak
Terima kasih la kat Speaker Parlimen sebab gantung DS Anwar dan rakan2nya. Boleh la depa mai turun jumpa kami rakyat.Hal GLC tu biasa la masa untung depa senyap2 balas macam2 bonus, masa rugi depa kata silap pelaburan & pekerjanya malas. Siap la nasib pekerjanya tahun depan, bonus tiada, gaji tak naik la. Rating PEAM, AMENO dan Kerajaan tu biasa juga la yang tukang fikir alias pembodek akan kata rating bagus2..Rakyat..He3..Rating hang tunggu PRU13.

Anonymous,  26 December 2010 at 12:21  


I disagree with you. UMNO is still as strong as ever and will remain so because of the strength of us malays. UMNO shall live on forever and following Billy Joel's song, UMNO must not "Don't go changing, trying to please others.......".

An UMNO admirer.

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