The Stolen Election

About 3 years ago, we worked hard to realize political change in our beloved homeland. We hoped the ideals we believed in and aspired to would be made a reality. Elimination of corruption and racial and religious politics, economic and social equality, and the practice of human rights were high on our wish list. Continue reading “The Stolen Election”

New normal or abnormal?

Since 18 March 2020, Malaysia has been under Movement Control Order (MCO). We’ve been staying home for over 3 months, religiously washing our hands, donning face masks in public, carrying and using hand sanitizer, avoiding large gatherings, and trying to keep a distance of 1 meter from people around us. We have become familiar with an often bandied term, “new normal”. What is this “new normal”?

At the end of February last year, we had a sudden change of government that literally sneaked in by the back door, displacing our legitimately elected government. Admittedly, our duly elected government faced problems being the government we expected it to be. It made some changes but dithered on some of the key changes the Pakatan Harapan promised in its election manifesto. The cost of living rose again due to the 1MDB financial scandal and other financial mismanagement and underhanded deals that had drained the country’s coffers. Citizens showed patience and tolerance in view of these hitches. We were prepared to give the new PH government a chance to straighten things out. We had also learned that we could change the administration if they proved unsatisfactory to most of the electorate. So, if we wanted a change at the next elections, we, the electorate, would have effected it through the ballot box.

Yet, without our consent or knowledge this back door government sneaked in, thinking they knew better than the electorate, not giving us a chance to make a fair judgment of our elected government at the end of its first 5 year term. Is this the ‘new normal’?

The new Perikatan Nasional (PN), as they style themselves, comprising 1 party that hopped to join those we threw out in GE14, began a ‘buying’ spree of MPs and party members from the PH political block. Is this habit of ‘buying’ the loyalty of ‘hoppers’ the new normal that they want us to adopt and believe in?

This hastily thrown together administration, didn’t make a better showing than our legitimately elected one, but made a laughably outrageous start with the PM’s One-man-show supported by an advisory council, instead of a Cabinet, made up of PH ‘hoppers’ and the same ‘rejected’ BN leaders relegated to the Opposition before this back door coup, for about 2 weeks.

Then came the MCO , dubbed the “lock down” in March, styled after the Italian full lock down at the time when Italy was clocking up one of the highest Covid 19 infection and death rates after China. Was that appropriate or was it a panic or guilt reaction of a “mandate-less” government? Yet, citizens again exercised patience and gave the “sneak-in government and hoppers” the benefit of the doubt. Since then, the Rakyat have shown an admirable tolerance of the unfolding shenanigans engaged in by this back door government.

The MCO was harsh in its restrictions on all resident within Malaysia’s borders but was also used to sharpen the agenda of the back door administration under Perikatan Nasional(PN) and its duplicate coalition Muafakat Nasional(MN), the difference between them is hard to make out.

As all who have resided in this country for long enough may realise, the PN agenda = BN agenda based on ethnicity and religion. Covid 19 seemed to present the opportunity to divert the Rakyat’s focus from their back door status to blaming the foreign workers, refugees and undocumented migrants for the spread of the corona virus. The resulting xenophobic environment incited by certain ultra right wing groups on social media was encouraged by administrative silence and inaction regarding verbal abuse, racist attacks and discriminatory actions against these particularly vulnerable communities. To make things worse, lock down measures imposed on areas with high migrant populations were cruelly severe. Immigration authorities aided the xenophobia by launching raids to arrest and detain undocumented migrants, including refugees, asylum seekers and foreign workers in places under EMCO (Enhanced Movement Control Orders) classified as ‘corona virus clusters’.

Then came the crack down on our constitutional right to freedom of expression on the excuse of curbing “fake news”. Several netizens, a local internet news provider, NGO activists, and an international news documentary broadcaster and an interviewee have all been hauled in by Bukit Aman PDRM HQ under the Sedition Act and Multi-media and Communications Act (among other laws). Is this necessary? Or is it breaking a peanut with a sledge hammer?

Is the costs entailed in such drastic action justifiable and worth it? The cost in police time and judicial time, paid with taxpayers funds. Or is it just a waste of time and money, simply to create a sensation that we don’t need when we are occupied with breaking the Covid 19 chain? All the government needed to do was to use its RIGHT OF REPLY to straighten things out and peacefully explain the situation to the public minus the cost to the national purse.

So, is this the “NEW NORMAL”, apart from having to observe protection measures affecting our daily lives, so we don’t get fined or detained for breaching changing SOPs? These are also frequently unclear with the practice of double standards by authorities. The current situation looks much more like an “ABNORMAL” rather than a “new normal”. Welcome to the era of Covid19, the suppression of free expression, our constitutional and human rights !

The above paragraphs were written last year, since then management of the pandemic has become more heavy handed and chaotic due to the ambiguity of government directives that are unequally enforced. Double standards abound i.e. a lenient standard for those government ministers and elites and a more restrictive and tricky one for the rest of the population. How does one work this out? In conclusion, the “new normal” is nothing but chaos, arbitrary penalization of ordinary folk without real justification and more dosh for some crony coffers. Can it get any worse? Our fate is in the hands of the Almighty!

2019 on the horizon

19.5 hours to 2019. It’s about 4.30 am on the 31st December 2018. What have we done with our lives so far? We’ve changed our government but are still struggling to find elusive common sense in daily life. Elation at our ‘victory’, the ‘People’s victory’ is slowly settling down to reality. The reality of what we have become over 61+ years of being treated as doubtful stakeholders in this homeland, despite our birth right to have a homeland. (I speak from my point of view, one of the ‘un-chosen’ of migrant descent) There are leaders who want change for a more just, democratic and people caring nation, but there are also those who live to gang for power, self-interest and exhibitionist nationalism. They know who they are. The rosy veneers are peeling off to reveal the true color of each individual’s patriotism, if patriotism is what is practiced. Perhaps, people are starting to think about ‘patriotism’ and ‘nationalism’.

Continue reading “2019 on the horizon”

Yam is not raspberry

Certain Malaysian run eateries in this country seem to think that customers don’t know about food. In a boutique café, one day, running through a menu of light desserts, I spotted “raspberry ice-cream”. Ahh, that would be wonderful on such a hot day, especially when I’d already had a cup of coffee and hadn’t treated myself to an ice-cream for ages. Continue reading “Yam is not raspberry”

Immortal Spirit of Democracy

It is the 27th August 2015, just two days to the Bersih 4 march in Kuala Lumpur, WP, Kuching, Sarawak and Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. Malaysians must note and record this historical event for posterity, the next generations must know how their elders struggled and strove to win democratic freedom from oppression, exploitation and feudalism born of past colonial rule. We will remember the past, the present and the future. Continue reading “Immortal Spirit of Democracy”

An Unhappy 2014

Happy 2014 to all my kind, appreciative readers, the very best is wished for you as always. Whilst, we feel good and hope is high, at the moment, many people probably view the coming year with apprehension. Last year was a real ‘party’ that left some of us devastated with the sheer exhaustion of trying to cope with the situation. Continue reading “An Unhappy 2014”

Sham Christmas Goodwill

A Christmas Carol (1982 film)
A Christmas Carol (1982 film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Charles Dickens, a former resident of Lant Street.
Charles Dickens, a former resident of Lant Street. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

After the late night movieBabel” on Malaysia’s NTV7 which ended around 2am, I accidentally flicked to TV3. It’s amazing how inverted priorities are in this country. It was quarter way into a children’s animation of “A Christmas Carol” by Charles Dickens. At 2.30 in the morning? Which child would be awake at this hour, except for those like me. Continue reading “Sham Christmas Goodwill”

9/11 in 1973 Chile

Augusto Pinochet
Augusto Pinochet (Photo credit: a-birdie)

I have to share this, it is important because fewer people outside Chile may know about this 9/11 which was no less tragic than what happened on September 11, 2001 in New York. Still, one wonders how dictators like Augusto Pinochet had the sympathy of former Prime Ministers  Margaret Thatcher (UK) and Dr. Mahathir Mohammad (Malaysia). Now, Barak Obama, President of the United States wants to ‘teach’ Syria a lesson.  Has the United States itself learned anything from its past actions in the Middle East that only resulted in continuing conflict and destruction? How many more innocent people must die for nothing?

See the other 9/11 and ask yourself, if this is justified. People are getting tired of war and lies.

http://www.democracynow.org/2013/9/9/40_years_after_chile_coup_family

Testing Faith

The Malaysian Insider
The Malaysian Insider (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Pope Francis Portrait Painting
Pope Francis Portrait Painting (Photo credit: faithmouse)

One of the current burning issues in Malaysia is freedom of religion. The abuse of God’s  name in which many of these rights violations are committed would certainly be seen as not just oppressive and unjust, but a down right insult to the Almighty, let alone Peoples of “The Book”, as Jews, Christians and Muslims are called. Saying that, it seems that particular extremist factions from any of this troika seem to take every opportunity to abuse, insult and oppress each other, especially in the holiest of times when all should peacefully sit back and deeply reflect on our sinful ways. However, in this country, there are perpetual tests of faith for Muslims as well as Christians and the article I share here reflects the sort of test that arises when least expected. There is no headline, but this came out in the Malaysian Insider, an online daily. Continue reading “Testing Faith”

Days darkening before nightfall

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After Adam Adli’s release on bail, 1 MP(Member of Parliament), 3 political activist and another student activist were arrested yesterday. They were all charged in court with sedition and  RM5000 bail each, this morning (29th May 2013). Continue reading “Days darkening before nightfall”

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