“High Noon” in Malaysia – who will be left standing?

Its High Noon in Malaysia.

Who will be left standing after the political showdown in UMNO?

What is expected in the next few days will be played out in the next few hours.

A look at the front-page headlines of the mainstream media today shows that the Malaysian people are being prepared for this High Noon:

  • STOP! – The Prime Minister’s Office urges everyone, including Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin and members of the administration, to avoid commenting on the 1MDB issue. (New Straits Times)
  • SEMUA DIMINTA BERTENANG (Utusan Malaysia);
  • Be Patient, wait for report (Malay Mail); and
  • PMO to DPM: Wait for the outcome (The Star).

It is not any Opposition Leader who is the target of these front-page headlines of the mainstream media, but none other than the Deputy Prime Minister and Deputy UMNO President, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, who as if in anticipation of the impending “High Noon”, made the fierty, but right and proper speech at UMNO Cheras AGM on Sunday night that the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak must give satisfactory explanation about the Wall Street Journal report about RM2.6 billion deposited into his personal accounts in AmBank and most shocking of all, that no one in Cabinet really understood the RM42 billion 1MDB scandal, which Muhyiddin estimated would have mushroomed to be a scandal exceeding RM50 billion by now.

What was most eloquent about Muhyiddin’s speech was firstly, it was completely blacked out by the UMNO mouthpiece, Utusan Malaysia; secondly, the relegation to the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) to respond to Muhyiddin’s speech, reducing the Deputy Prime Minister’s position as the No. 2 man in the government to that of a mere departmental level.

Are Muhyiddin’s days, in fact, hours, numbered.

This is the ongoing drama of the most fractured UMNO and government in the nation’s history which is being played out now, with the sudden and surprise announcement by the Chief Secretary, Tan Sri Ali Hamsa about the termination of Tan Sri Abdul Gani Patail’s service as Attorney-General due to health reason and his immediate replacement by former Federal Court judge Mohamad Apandi Ali, and the surprise response of Gani to Malay Mail Online expressing ignorance over the termination of his service as Attorney-General.

Who else, in the most fractured UMNO and government in the nation’s history, are on the chopping block?

We are living in interesting and dangerous times.

Lim Kit Siang DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Gelang Patah