Malacca General Election the most extraordinary of the 22 general elections in my experience – an election where physical campaigning is banned

The Malacca General Election is the most extraordinary of the 22 general elections in my experience in the last 56 years – an election where all forms of physical campaigning are banned.

I have gone through 12 national general elections, nine Sarawak state general elections and countless by-elections but this is the first time that we have an election where there are no public rallies, ceramahs, talks and walkabouts – which put the Opposition parties at a great disadvantage.

Nobody can be certain what would be the outcome of the Polling Day tomorrow.

First. will the Malacca general election produce the lowest voter turnout in Malaysian electoral history?

The Covid-19 pandemic produced a 30% voter turnout in Jordan and 29% voter turnout in Algeria. Will it be the same in the Malacca general election?

Or will the Malaccan voters produce a “miracle” with over 70% or 80% voter turnout?

There are signs that the voters of Malacca are realising that the Malacca general election is not about “political frogs” but whether Malaysia can overcome the injustices and failures of the past half-a-century, pull itself up by the bootstraps, and unite all Malaysians regardless of race, religion and region to become a world-class great nation by the time Malaysia celebrates its centennial (100-year birthday) in 2057.

But do we have enough time for Malaccans to shake off the disappointment, despondency, hopelessness and desolation to renew confidence and hope by tomorrow about the future for the sake of our children and children’s children?

Secondly, what will be the outcome of the Malacca general election tomorrow?

Will Pakatan Harapan be able to win at least 15 seats and Adly Zahari return as Malacca Chief Minister?

Will Perikatan Nasional (PN) be wiped out in the Malacca general election, even affecting the position of the Prime Minister, Ismail Sabri, making him the Malaysian Prime who served a shorter term than Muhyiddin Yassin?

Will Barisan Nasional win the majority of the seats marking a creeping return of kleptocracy and Najib Razak’s political come-back, in view of Najib’s premier UMNO role in the Malacca general election?

Or will there be a hung Malacca State Assembly, with no coalition able to secure a majority to form the Malacca state government?

We will have to wait for the outcome of the Malacca general election tomorrow.

During the Malacca general election, I re-visited the Hang Tuah well and wondered what befell the Malacca empire five hundred years ago will again happen to Malacca and Malaysia – corruption the culprit that led to the ruination of the nation.

My visit to the Sam Tiong Keng temple in Semabok, Malacca was quite memorable for I encountered Wen Tiansiang, the poet-politician of the Southern Song dynasty, who is prepared to die instead of betraying his loyalty by pledging fealty to a new dynasty

I have been guided all my life by Wen Tianxiang’s immortal words “All men are mortal but my loyalty will illuminate the annals of history forever” and have never compromised my loyalty to Malaysia to make it an united and world-class great nation.

Wen Tiansiang owed his loyalty to the Song dynasty in China but I owed my loyalty to Malaysia, where I was born, educated and will die in Malaysia.

This is why I have thrice declined conferment of titles on me, because political leaders must set an example of “politics for the nation” and not “politics for oneself” –which had been set by a great son of Malacca, Tun Ghafar Baba who accepted titles after he retired from active politivcs.

I always believe that Malaysia, at the confluence of four great human civilisations – Malay/Islamic, Chinese, Indian and Western – must leverage on the values and virtues of these four great civilisations to be a world-class great nation.

Malaysia is Instant Asia and this should not be just a slogan to attract tourists all over the world to Malaysia but be the very essence of life in Malaysia.

The Malacca general election must be the first step of a long journey to make everyone in Malaysia possess the spirit of Malaysian First if we are to succeed in our mission to make Malaysia a world-class great nation bv 2057.

We must make all Malaysians, regardless of whether Malay, Chinese, Indian, Kadazan, Iban or Muslim, Buddhist, Christian, Hindu, Sikkhist, Taoist be Malaysian First. This is not going to be a simple or easy job.

Pakatan Harapan government in its 22 months had made a number of mistakes, thinking that it had five years to fulfil its election promises.

Now, from the confessions of Muhyiddin Yassin during the Malacca general election, we know there were forces inside the Pakatan Harapan government which were working at cross-purpose from the Pakatan Harapan election manifesto.

For instance, I had wondered why there was inordinate delay in the DAP nomination of Syahredzan Johan as a Senator although the decision was taken in September 2019, and it was one of the decisions which were nullified by the Sheraton Move conspiracy in Feb. 2020.

I had the opportunity to revisit Cheng Hoon Teng Temple in Malacca, a 350-year oldest temple in the country. In 1984, it was in the eye of a political storm when the Malacca State Government decided the demolish the 12,500 graves on Bukit China.

DAP launched a “Save Bukit China campaign” and although many naysayers at the time said it was a hopeless task as nothing could stop the Malacca State Government from demolishing the cemetery hill for commercial development, the DAP Save Bukit China campaign succeeded because of great support of the people of Malac ca and Malaysia.

If we can save Bukit China in 1984, there is no reason why a Save Malaysia and Transform It into a World-Class Great Nation by Malaysia’s centennial in 2057 cannot succeed.

Lim Kit Siang MP for Iskandar Puteri