Speech by Lim Kit Siang at the 2,000-People Gelang Patah DAP Parliamentary Liaison Committee dinner themed "Let Us Move Towards Two Party System Together" held at SJK Gua Kuang I(2) Hall, Skudai, Johore on Friday, 21st November 2008 at 10 pm: 

Will Najib call snap election end-2009/ early 2010 to get full mandate and legitimacy as sixth Prime Minister and will RAHMAN prophecy come true with Najib as last in the line of UMNO Prime Ministers? 

Will Datuk Seri Najib Razak call a snap general election at the end of next year or early 2010 to get a full mandate and legitimacy as the sixth Prime Minister and to put behind him all the many serious allegations now hounding and haunting him?

This is an option Najib will have to give serious consideration when he takes over as the sixth Prime Minister next March.

Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi dissolved Parliament in March 2004 four months after taking over the premiership while Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad dissolved Parliament in March 1982 eight months after becoming the fourth Prime Minister, both scoring landslide victories in the "first flush" of a new Prime Minister with the 2004 general election victory the most unprecedented.

Will Najib take a leaf from Abdullah and Mahathir and plan for an early snap general election when he takes over as Prime Minister next March, whether end of next year or early 2010?

This is the first strategic decision Najib has to make as Prime Minister, whether to craft a national euphoria when he assumes the premiership and go for early polls whether end-2009 or early 2010 or complete the bulk of the 12th Parliamentary term to hold the 13th general election in 2011 or 2012.

Najib and his core advisers must now be weighing the pros and cons of having early snap polls.

The arguments for early snap polls are the same reasons why Abdullah and Mahathir chose the option to take full advantage of the "honeymoon" goodwill as well as the political euphoria that could be generated by a new Prime Minister, which cannot be sustained if Najib completes the full term of the present Parliament.

Furthermore, a convincing victory in an early polls will have the great benefit of giving Najib the necessary legitimacy which he will lack when he becomes Prime Minister in March, as unlike the other five Prime Ministers, Najib will be starting his premiership hounded and haunted by many serious allegations of impropriety raising grave questions about his fitness for the high office.

There is however a great risk if Najib goes for an early poll option that he may suffer a major electoral setback, a possibility no more unthinkable after the March 8 "political tsunami".

The most famous political prophecy in Malaysia, the RAHMAN prophecy, is now making furious rounds in Malaysian political circles.

The RAHMAN prophecy on the first six Prime Ministers of Malaysia is about to be proven completely true starting with Tunku Abdul RAHMAN, followed by Tun ABDUL Razak, Tun HUSSEIN Onn, Tun MAHATHIR Mohamad, Datuk Seri ABDULLAH Badawi and Datuk Seri NAJIB Razak.

The questions that ensue are:

  •  Is Najib the last in the line of UMNO Prime Ministers, with UMNO political hegemony and stranglehold on Federal power broken after Najib?
  •  Will Najib be the shortest-serving Prime Minister in Malaysia if he is defeated by Pakatan Rakyat in a snap general election whether end-2009 or early-2010?

Nobody can answer these questions until probably next year but until then, they will bulk larger and larger in the political dream and consciousness not only of Najib and UMNO leaders but all Malaysians.

* Lim Kit Siang,  DAP Parliamentary leader & MP for Ipoh Timor