Will “Keluarga Malaysia” save Malaysia from becoming a failed state?

The day after tomorrow on Sunday will be Ismail Sabri’s 100th Day as the 9th Prime Minister of Malaysia.

He has coined “Keluarga Malaysia” as his signature brand for his premiership of Malaysia.

Will “Keluarga Malaysia” save Malaysia from being a failed state, as Malaysia had been slipping from the international table of competitiveness and successful nations?

Malaysia did badly as a nation according to the Covid-19 pandemic index.

When Ismail Sabri was sworn in as the ninth Prime Minister on August 21, Malaysia had 22,262 daily new Covid-19 cases and 223 daily Covid deaths, and the cumulative totals were 1,535,286 Covid-19 cases and 13,936 Covid-19 deaths.

On the 100th day of Ismail Sabri as the ninth Prime Minister on August 28, the cumulative totals of the Covid-19 pandemic of Malaysia are likely to be over 2.62 million cases and 30,300 deaths - an increase of over one million Covid-19 cases and 16,359 Covid-19 deaths.

We have slowed down exponential increases of Covid-19 cases (at one time reaching the daily peak of 24,599 on 26th August) and Covid-19 deaths (at one time reaching the daily peak 463 deaths on Sept. 14), but still too slow, as we recorded 6,144 daily new Covid-19 cases and 48 daily Covid-19 deaths yesterday.

In contrast, on August 21, Indonesia had 16,744 daily new cases and 1,361 daily deaths, Philippines 16,234 daily new cases and 397 daily deaths and India 31,043 daily new Covid-19 cases and 401 daily Covid-19 deaths.

Yesterday, Indoneseia recorded 372 daily new cases and 16 daily deaths; Philippines recorded 975 daily new cases and 193 daily deaths; and India recorded 2,044 daily new cases.

We have not only lost out to Indonesia whch have fewer daily new Covid-19 cases for the entire period of Ismail Sabri’s 100 Days as ninth Prime Minister of Malaysia, Indonesia has six weeks of daily new cases in three-digit figures since Oct. 15 while we are still struggling in the 4,000-6,000 cases zone.

We have also lost out to Indonesia for over seven weeks since 5th October in having more daily Covid-19 deaths than Indonesia.l

We have also lost out to Philippines, which has entered into its second day three-digit daily new cases, and most seriously, we are losing out to India in daily new Covid-19 cases.

Can Ismail Sabri on Sunday explain how his “Keluarga Malaysia” will save Malaysia from becoming a failed state”?

I fully support the proposal by Nazir Razak and a group of 54 other prominent individuals who have urged the Yang di Pertuan Agong and the Conference of Rulers to endorse the establishment of a non-partisan platform, A “Better Malaysia Assembly”, to propose reforms and reset of national institutions and systems.

As the letter to the Yang di Pertuan Agong and the Conference of Rulers have said, successive prime ministers have come into power promising substantial reforms, but these promises often give way to racial and religious overtones and little change is ultimately achieved.

The assembly will deliberate on issues of nationhood and institutional reforms, including matters such as the electoral system, political funding, federal-state relations, role of institutions, affirmative action and education.

It would identify specific policies and legislative changes that are required, which is estimated would take 18 to 24 months of deliberation behind closed doors to reach a consensus.

Lim Kit Siang MP for Iskandar Puteri