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Sakmongkol ak 47

Thursday 17 June 2010

Reality check on UMNO

Britain's labor party probably now has a membership of 200,000 strong. In 1995, it has about 198,000 members. For a political party, that's not a big number. For a small number it has been able to govern Britain on several occasions.
The other major political party the Tories or the party that Margaret Thatcher once led has a membership of around 300,000 members. A conservative party member pays around RM 150 (£25) person as fee or around RM 30 (£5) if you are under the age of 23.
Relatively speaking, for a given population, Britain's political parties are small. They don't have 3,000,000 members of screaming skinheads with swastika emblems.
The capability of a small party ruling a first world country reflects to a large extent, the quality of leadership and the quality of party members. It also indicates less politicization of the population.
Suppose you do the same to UMNO. I mean, each member has to pay a fee of RM 150 per person per year and the pemuda, puteri and putera pay RM 30 per person per year.
That would immediately put a stop to any ketua bahagians, ketua cawangans, ketua pemuda or ketua puteri from paying for others. Everyone pays for themselves. Only those committed and who are believers in the party's cause will join. You don't need to have 3 million members if not all of them vote for you or don't believe in UMNO's cause. Big numbers mean nothing in the elections. It's the quality that's more important.
If members are not committed or believe in the party's cause, that is useless. In the last election, despite having 3 million members, UMNO candidates secured only 2.38 million votes. Malay voters numbered 5.7 million. If you subtract 380,000 voters from those who voted UMNO candidates on the assumption they were non Malays, you have 2 million as voters for UMNO. That means 1,000,000 UMNO members did not vote UMNO candidates or did not register as voters. More importantly, and I want UMNO leaders to be aware of this- 3.7 million Malay voters rejected UMNO candidates or did not register as voters or simply stayed home.
It's time for UMNO to look at this aspect of reforming the party. Raise the bar. Membership fees. Qualifications etc.
Will that make UMNO an elite party? Maybe so. But it isn't necessary for every Malay to become an UMNO member. It's sufficient if he supports UMNO because of its political programs. Being an UMNO member is no guarantee that he/she votes for UMNO candidates.
Quantity isn't relevant to UMNO. The UMNO leadership, I mean the entire leadership structure, especially those who think about the future should be thinking culture. A culture that lacks a driving, highly educated elite deeply committed to a cause is doomed to mediocrity.
UMNO doesn't have this culture. It has more of that crabs in the Malay open basket culture. UMNO isn't that serious about quality either. The riff raffs, the village bullies, the loafers, the lay-abouts, make up the majority of members.
UMNO doesn't seem to realize that actually, modern governance which includes decision making and priority setting is too complex to be left to the man in the street.



Sad Malaysian 17 June 2010 at 23:03  

Sigh sigh sigh sigh cry cry cry cry What has Malaysia done to deserve such a despicable overlord which I pray will not be overlord for much longer.

sniper,  17 June 2010 at 23:06  


welcome to the politics planet.

name to me one party in Malaysia that work for the rakyat first..... none.

Anonymous,  17 June 2010 at 23:48  

Oh Dato.

How I wish I own "harian metro" or even "Kosmo"

I ♥ to give you even a small column
and take the risk of my permit or better yet - ISA just to have you write for my paper.

But Alas ... I woke up and realised
i'm still living in malaysia ..will
UMNO understand/hear this plead and ideas of yours?

Apa nak reality check selagi minister samseng/gurkhas ada i.e.

1. Nazri "Taxi" Aziz
2. Mohd "Share" Nor Yaakop
3. Zahid "Stealth" Hamidi
4. Raise "RTM 1 Dunia" Yatim
5. Prebet "Pade Doh" Khairy
6. Mukhriz "Mathater" AP

Tsk Tsk Tsk ...

Anonymous,  18 June 2010 at 09:34  

I have found that my name (and others in my family) have been registered in one BN party branch without our knowledge.
But we are through and through Opposition and have never voted for BN ever.

I was told the Chairman had only to find 50 members to start a branch.
We have never received any notice to attend any AGM rom the branch but our names are there.

Quiet Despair,  18 June 2010 at 09:46  

What you proposed is idealism.
Not practical at all to our culture and race.
I don't think everyone are willing to cough up so much money to join UMNO.
You know how it is with us - kalau free lagi bagus.
If we do that, UMNO will be more elitist than it is as accused now.
I do have this idea tha we should declare ourselves BN or PKR people like the American Democrats or Republican voters.
The ordinary Americans do contribute to the campaign of their party leaders.
That's why you can see in the case of Obama for example, many are now regretting they put so much money for Obama to be President.
In our case, we like to say we are UMNO supporter, suggesting this and that or criticising this and that.
But we vote for the opposition.
The main culprits are the civil servants.
They voted or will be voting for PKR.
Unlike our father's time, it was a foregone conclusion that they are BN voters if they are public officials.

Anonymous,  18 June 2010 at 10:18  

Umno baru's current membership is majority filled up with the riff raffs, the village bullies, the loafers, the lay-abouts. No doubt about that!

The question that r glaring & yet no Malay M’sians wanted to ask is why?

One word, current umno’s practices is money via cronyism.

Or else how could one account for scums of the bolihland sit in the august house of Parliament!

& also only through these that these scumbags can buy 'respects' in the name of Alif Ba Ta.

Anonymous,  18 June 2010 at 12:37  

All the ketua bahagian want are lundu to vote for them. Who care about the party or nation? It is personal power that matter. All these ketua bahagian want are just mindless idiots, the more the better.

Anonymous,  18 June 2010 at 12:44  

Confused lah Dato...

Govt says wants transparency,market driven and competitiveness..but when Affin Bank wants to bid for EON bank..govt blocks through Bank Negara leaving the door open only to Hong Leong.

Minority shareholders not given option to choose.

So whats is transparency,market driven and competitiveness in this context?And, I am not even trying to delve into the "racial" angle..

Anonymous,  18 June 2010 at 15:28  

For just one ringgit additional revenue...the govt is now going to spend at least RM 20 million .

Am referring to TianChua issue.

Thus..we can applaud the judiciary for not dispensing economic based judgment.

Unfortunately,on same day Mr Norza became a good boy due to "hostile witnesses"?Who are these hostile guys?

Anonymous,  18 June 2010 at 16:44  


I'm just wondering how many of the current MT will support your idea...

Anonymous,  18 June 2010 at 20:30  


I think your suggestion may be superfluous. There are many types (models) of how a political party might be sructured.

You can have a mass based permanent membership or even a floating mass thing (which becomes visible during elections i.e. in Suharto's New Order Golkar).

You even can have a party which has a strong institutional structure or a party that relies on personality or strong man kind of leadership. (You can have a democratic party or a Leninist type - the list goes on and on...)

The problem with UMNO right now is that it is still in transition from a strong man leadership to something else. So basically you got a confused party elite not so much due low calibre of leadership but because of the elites just don't know how to operate in the post strong-man leadership environment. And the problem is compounded because that former strong-man keeps making comments and remarks that put the party leadership in uneasy position....

Of course, then you got this change of attitude of the general populace. Long time ago, UMNO has this aura of being a nationalistic party that delivered a nation (from the colonialist). But of course people want something else. They want good governance and a government that can bring material benefits, besides justice etc. The needs, wants and desires are very diverse - because Malaysia is multicultural. In fact the problem of UMNO is that it not handling this diversity well...

Anyway I kind of not agree with you using Britain as a comparison. In Britain, the change of government has been institutionalized. Parties change over time. But not here.

Maybe it's better to make comparison with Mexico's PRI (Partido Revolucion Institucional) or Japan's LDP.

My guess is that, despite its weaknesses, UMNO will stay in poser at least for one more term. I say that I have 70% confidence in my prediction...

Mamat (An Anonymous Malay in Cyberspace)

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