Instead of rage and rant over the racism and hypocrisy of the Ismail Sabri episode, scorn and mockery will be more powerful weapons which can even bring down the entire edifice of Najib premiership
Three serious political disasters afflicted the Najib premiership in the past two months:
- firstly the botch-up in all the three phases of response, relief and reconstruction of the disaster management plan and preparedness of the Federal Government in the Floods 2014, the worst floods catastrophe in living memory, as the damages in terms of 25 dead, a million flood victims with a quarter million in the various flood relief centres and billions of ringgit losses could have been minimised;
- secondly, the shameful episode of the Home Minister, Datuk Seri Zahid Hamidi’s infamous letter to the US Federal Bureau of Investigationhs (FBI) vouching for the character of alleged gambling kingpin Paul Phua, standing trial in Las Vegas, Nevada for illegal gambling, in contradiction of previous earlier police report to FBI and even more serious, without the knowledge or approval of the Police, the Foreign Ministry or the Prime Minister, and being caught red-handed with lie after lie like the denials by previous Home Ministers that they had written similar letters and with the Cabinet kept completely in the dark and dare not do what is right on the matter; and
- Thirdly, the craven and dishonest stand of the 35 Ministers in the Najib Cabinet 2015 on the racist call by the Minister for Agriculture and Agro-based Industry, Datuk Ismail Sabri, to Malay consumers to boycott Chinese businesses was not targeting Chinese traders alone, but aimed at all traders – which reminds one immediately of Hans Christian Andersens immortal tale of The Emperor’s New Clothes.
Of the three political disasters afflicting Prime Minister Najib and his Cabinet, it is the third episode which is capable of bringing down the entire edifice of the Najib premiership down in ruins.
There are two responses to the Ismail Sabri saga, one is to rage and rant at such racism and hypocrisy as well as arrogance and chicanery, the other to scorn and mock at such stupidity and idiocy, as to try to enact a modern-day Emperor’s New Clothes - which is why I had commented that the 35 Ministers in the Najib Cabinet 2015 had made history, in trying to prove that they have comprehension problems worse than ordinary Malaysian school children who are already several years behind their peers in other countries.
Images and words about the Ismail Sabri saga have been competing since Monday to be the most fatal and lethal to destroy not only Ismail’s credibility but that of the Prime Minister and the entire Barisan Nasional leadership.
Which of the following has the most fatal and lethal effects for such a purpose –
- Ismail’s initial Facebook post;
- the phalanx of UMNO Youth leaders giving full endorsement holding placards of “We Are All Ismail Sabri”;
- the craven Cabinet decision and the shocking PMO’s statement justifying Ismail’s racist call;
- Ismail Sabri appearing on TV and going around basking in the glory as the new–found hero;
- the picture of the MCA President and Transport Minister Datuk Liow Tiong Lai and Ismail Sabri “all smiles” at the KLIA yesterday demonstrating great bonhomie despite their purported differences in the Cabinet over the latter’s racist call.
So sad, for the Barisan Nasional Ministers and leaders don’t know what they do, in destroying whatever is left of their credibility and political integrity.
It is still not too late for Ismail Sabri to salvage the situation for himself and the Najib premiership – which is to do what is right from the beginning, to apologise for his racist call and to resign in cognisance that he had committed an unpardonable sin as a Minister in a plural society in acting and behaving like a rabid racialist when he should have conducted himself as a moderate and model Malaysian.