Three unusual sights during Mahathir’s speech on 11th Malaysia Plan Mid-Term Review in Parliament yesterday

There were three unusual sights during the Prime Minister, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad’s speech on the 11th Malaysia Plan Mid-Terrm Review in Parliament yesterday.

First, the empty seat opposite the Prime Minister across the parliamentary aisle in the Opposition benches. The seat was empty as the Parliamentary Opposition Leader had been arrested by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) and expected to be charged in court today on 45 counts of corruption, criminal breach of trust and money-laundering.

Second, the second Opposition seat next to the Parliamentary Opposition Leader, which is occupied by the former Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak. During Mahathir’s entire speech on the 11th Malaysia Plan Mid-Term Review, Najib never raised his head to look at the Prime Minister, eyeball to eyeball so to say, but kept his head down.

A concession of total moral and political defeat and capitulation by Najib Razak?

Third, Mahathir’s conclusion in his speech resonated with the majority of the Members of Parliament, who rapped the table in appreciation – except for the glum faces from the former UMNO/Barisan Nasional Ministers and MPs, including the sole MCA Member of Parliament, Datuk Seri Wee Ka Siong, who seemed to be very comfortable in the company of UMNO leaders.

What was it that made the UMNO/BN leaders so uncomfortable and glum?

It was the conclusion of Mahathir’s speech, viz:

“87. What I have tabled is for the rakyat. For all the rakyat from Perlis to Sabah. For the Malays, Chinese, Indians, Iban, Kadazan, Murut and Orang Ali as well as other ethnic groups, all who live in Malaysia.

“88. We want a united Malaysia. We want all Malaysians to succeed and enjoy the wealth of the nation. I call upon all Malaysians to shoulder this responsibility. If everything contained in this document is implemented, I am confident that Malaysia will once again roar as a the Asian Tiger. The image of Malaysia will be transformed by a kleptocractic country to a truly democracy with a government which is clean, noble and of integrity. Malaysians in every nook and corner of the world can proudly introduce himself or herself: I am a Malaysian.”

Are the UMNO/BN leaders, including Najib, Ismail Sabry Yaacob, Mahdzir Khalid, Annuar Musa, Idris Yusof, Noh Omar, Shahidan Kassim and Wee Ka Siong, opposed to the transformation of Malaysia from a global kleptocracy to a model democracy and the building of a New Malaysia where Malaysians free proud of identifying themselves as Malaysians anywhere in the world?

Are they unhappy at the objective to create unity among all ethnic groups in Malaysia and the restoration of Malaysia as an Asian Tiger?

Lim Kit Siang MP for Iskandar Puteri