Call on Najib to announce before Chempaka by-election nomination on March 10 that UMNO will not contest in any Permatang Pauh by-election arising from Anwar’s disqualification to demonstrate his commitment to promote Malaysian unity and not just Malay unity
When the Prime Minister and UMNO President, Datuk Seri Najib Razak announced on Wednesday that UMNO will not contest the Chempaka State Assembly by-election in Kelantan caused by the death of Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat, he said this was to promote Malay unity.
I responded in a series of four tweets, viz:
- Expected in my pre-Cabinet Open Letter yesterday;
- Should announce same to show bona fide! http://goo.gl/2dnOqx No decision on Permatang Pauh yet, says Najib (MMO)
- UMNO decision to stay out of Chempaka welcome but it should herald a virtuous cycle of national unity/reconciliation;
- Make it national unity, not just Muslim unity, Kit Siang tells Umno (MMO).
Najib’s announcement took no one by surprise as it was very much to be expected at this stage of UMNO power play and the plot by certain UMNO leaders to cause a break-up of Pakatan Rakyat by promoting the “UG” (Unity Government) concept of UMNO-PAS Government.
In fact, when the Barisan Nasional Supreme Council met on 13th February within 24 hours of the death of Nik Aziz, the writing was on the wall that UMNO would stay out of the Chempaka by-election and the sole purpose of the sudden BN Supreme Council meeting was for Najib to inform the leaders of the BN component parties of such a possibility.
This was also why I predicted that UMNO will stay out of the Chempaka by-election in my third pre-Cabinet Open Letter addressed to the MCA President, Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai and Gerakan President, Datuk Mah Siew Keong, before the Cabinet meeting on 25th February, 2015, asking whether they would notify the Cabinet that their resignations from Cabinet would instantly come into effect when the Kelantan UMNO State Assemblymen support PAS hudud legislation in Kelantan State Assembly in March.
It is clear that the UMNO decision to stay out of Chempaka by-election was part of a Machiavellian UMNO political ploy to cause a break-up of Pakatan Rakyat and had really nothing to do with post-flood relief work in Kelantan.
It is most unfortunate that 58 years after Merdeka, the Prime Minister who started his administration with the 1Malaysia Policy, has reverted to talking about “Malay unity” instead of talking about “Malaysian unity”.
Although Najib has announced many policy initiatives like the 1Malaysia Policy and Global Movement of Moderates, Malaysia has never been more divided, troubled and uncertain about the future, with extremist, bigoted and intolerance voices stirring racial and religious hatred and conflict allowed to rear their ugly heads unchecked.
This is the time for inclusive politics embracing all Malaysian races, religions, classes and individuals and not exclusive politics to further divide Malaysians into smaller units, whether on race, religion or whatever.
Malaysian politics must start anew – and UMNO/BN staying out of Chempaka by-election would be a good start if it is the first step of a long journey to promote Malaysian unity and not just to promote Malay unity. As I said in my tweet: lets “herald a virtuous cycle of national unity/reconciliation”.
Is Najib Prime Minister of all Malaysians or just Prime Minister of UMNO Malays seeking to tempt PAS Malays join them in a “UG” (Unity Government) against the Pakatan Rakyat?
DAP will give Najib full support in any initiative to effect national unity and reconciliation by expanding the politics of inclusion of all Malaysians to replace the old politics of exclusion, based on narrow division or identification along ethnic, religious or socio-economic groups.
For this reason, I call on Najib to announce before Chempaka by-election nomination on March 10 that UMNO will not contest any Permatang Pauh by-election arising from Anwar’s disqualification to demonstrate his commitment to promote Malaysian unity and not just Malay unity.
The new Parliament session for 2015 will be officially opened by the Yang di Pertuan Agong on Monday, March 9. Although Anwar has started his fourth incarceration in his life in Sungai Buloh Prison, he is till Parliamentary Opposition Leader and MP for Permatang Pauh until the outcome of the petition for pardon.
In the circumstances, Najib should ensure that Anwar can attend the official opening of Parliament on March 9.