Friday, November 28, 2014

Mohd Najib Playing the Malay Warrior Role

A Kadir Jasin

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MOHD Najib Abdul Razak may not be the savviest of Malaysian Prime Ministers, but he is experience enough to know that this is the time to pacify the angry Malays.

He has to stop them from prying open his Pandora’s box and against scheming for his overthrow.

So it’s not at all surprising that he made an about turn on his promise to repeal the Sedition Act (SA) and promising to “perkasakan” (empower) the Malays. With last year’s “Tsunami Cina” showing no signs of letting up, Mohd Najib needs the Malays even more.

Sacrificing his popularity with the non-Malay members of his Barisan Nasional coalition and incurring the ire of the liberal elite are a risk worth taking if the reward is ensuring his survival as Umno President and Prime Minister – at least until the next general elections.

Playing the Malay Pahlawan Role
He must have been sufficiently convinced that his popularity with Umno members in particular and the conservative Malays in general is declining and the challenges against his leadership could very well be real.

Damn me if you wish, but on this, I am with Mohd Najib. I have never been in favour of Mohd Najib’s decision to repeal of the Internal Security Act (ISA) and the Emergency Ordinance (EO). The furthest I would go is to amend them to be in tune with time.

After an about-face on SA, Mohd Najib might very well be stronger as Umno President, but the BN could lose more support among the non-Malays and the liberal elite.

In making the decision, he was addressing himself almost exclusively to Umno. He said he made the decision because he listened to Wanita and Youth movements and to the Deputy President (Muhyiddin Mohd Yassin).

Shifting Responsibility

It was a clever move. By shifting part of the blame to Muhyiddin, who has spoken about the dangers of repealing the act, he is lessening his own burden of responsibility.

This is the price Mohd Najib is paying for behaving more like a president than prime minister. He would not have been in this mess had he consulted Umno and party elders before repealing the ISA and the EO, and announcing plan to do the same with SA.

The silent majority among the Malays was against the repeal of the ISA and the EO. The repeal of the former lessened government’s ability to act against terrorism and the latter unleashed thousands of criminals and bad hats on the society with bloody outcome.

Would he become anymore popular with the non-Malays liberal elite and the WOG (western-oriented gentlemen) by repealing the ISA and the EO?

The 2013 GE results showed the opposite. These people were against the government not so much because of ISA, EO and SA but because of the opulence, extravagance, power abuse and corruption of the ruling elite.

Instead he offended the Malays of his own party. His promise to repeat SA only made things worse. On the other hand, the non-Malays and the liberal elite did not help Mohd Najib’s dream of a moderate Malaysia when they started questioning and insulting the Malays and their institutions relentlessly in the social media.

Now members of his party may be temporarily relieved. However, they should be warned not to swallow their President’s promises hook, line and sinker. He may yet do another volte-face.

Hail to the Chief
The oppositions and their liberal supporters are understandably upset. But I think they should be thankful to Mohd Najib for giving them more bullets. His about-face on SA is a bonus to them.

Price of Exuberance

Since taking over the country in 2009, Mohd Najib had clearly misunderstood and miscalculated the mood of the people, including members of his won party.

He is driven by exuberance more than understanding. His is blinded by his transformation zeal and he lives in a make believe world created by his family members, advisers, special officers and consultants.

These are people who, like Mary Antoinette over 200 years ago responded, “let them eat cake” when she was told that the French people had no bread to eat.

Yes Mohd Najib is the Prime Minister for all. Nobody is denying that. But to ignore or be seen to ignore the interest of the Malays and other Bumiputeras, who form the majority of the rakyat jelata (the masses), is foolish.

For now, Mohd Najib’s position in Umno is unchallenged. The Umno masses have been temporarily pacified and his likely opponents disarmed.

But the BN’s popularity with the non-Malays and the liberal elite might have taken another tumble.

Mohd Najib is still staring at the Ides of March less than four years from now when the GE has to be held. On the Ides of March, Julius Caesar was stabbed in the back by his dear friend, Brutus.


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Presiden Umno Tanya: Di Mana Silap Kita?

A Kadir Jasin

[Komen “Anonymous” tidak akan disiarkan. Dalam blog kita ini, pembahas WAJIB ada nama. Nama samaran dan nama pena pun tak apa. Angka pun boleh. Guna nama sendiri macam saya lagilah bagus.]

MUTAKHIR – “"Saya mendengar pendapat dan cadangan daripada timbalan perdana menteri, Wanita, Pemuda, dan Puteri serta usul daripada bahagian dan keresahan serta pandangan NGO. Maka saya sebagai perdana menteri memutuskan yang Akta Hasutan 1948 dikekalkan." – Mohd Najib ketita merasmikan PAU di PWTC hari ini (27 Nov).

(Pengumuman itu adalah pusingan-U kepada ikrar beliau memansuhkan akta berkenaan dan menggantikannya dengan Akta Keharmonian Nasional.)

Posting Asal

MENJELANG Perhimpunan Agung Umno (PAU), banyaklah kenyataan, ikrar dan janji dibuat. Amat menakjubkan apabila Presiden Umno sendiri masih tertanya-tanya "di mana silap kita?"

Berikut adalah antara petikan menarik daripada pembesar Umno dan penyokong serta pelindung mereka untuk renungan bersama.

1. "Saya rasa sangat letih dan ia sangat memalukan apabila kita (BN) disebut sebagai pembangkang. Saya tahu anda semua rasa letih dan malu juga.” – Mohd Najib dalam ucapan di Konvensyen Umno Selangor, 1 Nov.

2. “Ramai rakyat Selangor bosan tetapi kalau mereka tak yakin lagi kepada pembangkang, boleh atau tidak mereka memberi sokongan kepada kita? Ini persoalannya. Benar kita nampak rakyat bosan dan tak suka, tapi inilah masa dan ketikanya bagi kita memindahkan sokongan kepada UMNO dan BN.” - Mohd Najib dalam ucapan di Konvensyen Umno Selangor, 1 Nov.

3. “Saya berjumpa dengan Najib pada 18 November lalu kira-kira 20 hingga 30 minit, hanya saya dengan dia saja. Meskipun saya terbuka dengan menyatakan tidak ada halangan untuk tukar pucuk kepimpinan tetapi presiden Umno mahu saya pimpin Selangor sekali gus meneruskan mandat menjadi pengerusi perhubungan Umno negeri." – Noh Omar, 22 Nov.

4. “Over the last three general elections, support for Umno and Barisan Nasional in Johor has declined from 81 per cent in 2004 to 63 per cent in 2008 to 54 per cent last year. Johor needs to be a stronghold for Umno again as the party started here.” – Mohd Najib at the Johor Umno Convention, 15 Nov.

Mohd Najib tidak tahu di mana kesilapan Umno
“Di mana silap kita?” – Mohd Najib di Konvensyen Umno Wilayah Persekutuan, 24 Nov.

5. “Saya katakan kita sudah capai tahap agak kritikal, kalau perubahan atau pembaharuan tidak dilihat berlaku, bimbangnya kita boleh kalah. Isyarat itu sudah jelas di hadapan kita.” - Muhyiddin Mohd Yassin dalam wawancara eksklusif dengan Utusan Malaysia 22 Nov.

6. “Kalau kita lihat kadar urbanisasi, penghijrahan anak muda dari kawasan luar bandar ke bandar sudah mencecah 60 peratus dan trend ini akan berterusan. Mereka memerlukan seorang pemimpin atau barisan pemimpin yang memahami mereka dan yang dapat memperjuangkan mereka.” – Khairy Jamaluddin, selepas hadiri Persidangan Kepimpinan Mahasiswa Nasional 2014 (PEMANAS) 23 Nov.

7. “Ada benda yang boleh dibahaskan, tapi kalau boleh jangan sentuh isu sensitif. Kalau boleh jangan sakiti hati orang lain.” - Tengku Adnan Mansor, 23 Nov.

8. "Sesetengah pinjaman adalah dalam bentuk jangka panjang tapi kami percaya komitmen kewangan ini dapat dipenuhi. Kami juga dalam proses menambahkan dan mencairkan nilai aset yang kami ambil alih." - Pengerusi 1MDB Lodin Wok Kamaruddin, 18 Nov.

(Terbaru: Harta 1MDB RM51.4 bilion. Hutang 1MDB RM41.9 bilion. Tahun ini rugi RM665.36 juta.)

9. Latest: Whoever uses my name, I ask the offices and ministries not to approve it.”- Rosmah Mansor commenting on people using her name to get project at the annual Squad Sayang gathering in Kuala Lumpur. (The Star).


Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Leadership Issue: What If PR Takes Over?

A Kadir Jasin

[NO anonymous comments will be published.  Please use Google Account, OpenID or Name/URL. Pseudonym is accepted. Thank you]

WE continue our discussion on leadership issue. This time let us try to figure out what will happen to the country if the Umno-led Barisan Nasional loses the next general election.

Let me start by quoting passages from the comment from debater, Safiai Saad, in our last posting. He, among other things, said:

“We should ask ourselves how would the Malays be if Umno is no more the ruling party. No ruling party is expected to continue to eternity. Certainly all the so called affirmative policy will be changed to reflect the new mandate given by the rakyat.”

During the 2013 general election, the Rubicon had been crossed – the Barisan Nasional lost the popular votes. In a system where proportional representation is practised, the Pakatan Rakyat would have won the Dewan Rakyat by a simple majority.

The momentum against the grand old coalition appears to be continuing although the PR has its fair share of setbacks in the form of intra- and inter-party squabbles.

Thus there is little wonder that more and more people are asking what if the BN falls at the next GE less than four years from now? What would the PR do as the new government of the Federation of Malaysia?

The Fear Factor

The Bumiputeras, in particular the pro-BN Malays, fear that they would lose their rights and privileges and the minority Chinese would dominate the government in addition to the economy that they already control.

Fear factor is Umno’s last remaining weapon to keep the Malays on its side. Fear of the Chinese was one of the key reasons why the Malays returned to Umno’s fold thus giving its a bigger victory during last year’s GE.

Images of tens of thousands jubilant Chinese and Indian supporters of the opposition taking over towns in Johor during election rallies struck fear among the Malays and they rallied behind Umno.

If the PR could convince the Malays that it would be fair to them, the BN would be in deeper trouble. The situation in the PR-ruled Selangor and Penang is a fair indicator. Was there a Malay revolt in these states since the PR gained power in 2008?

Except for the BN-linked Malay business community, the rest of the Malays appear to have accepted the PR. In Penang, where the DAP leads, the remaining holdouts are not Malays but Indian Muslims.

The latter are more strident in their criticisms of the state government because they are largely traders. They are directly affected by policies and programmes of the state government.

Even BN state assembly members are lacklustre in their efforts to confront the PR in the state legislative assembly. Unless they exhibit a more spirited challenge, they are at risk of being seen as a weak and ineffectual opposition.

If the PR could convince the Malays that it would be fair to them, respect their rights and privileges and promise a better deal for them in the economy, it would almost certainly get to keep Selangor and Penang, and may even win other states and ultimately the country.

Pacifying and allaying the fears of Malays are a must because they are the majority and they control the key elements of the government – the civil service, the police and the military. No government can change these overnight.

Of cause the easiest way to be popular with the people is for the PR to blame its predecessor i.e the BN government for the hardship they suffer. It would probably do what it has all along been demanding – setting up a royal commission of inquiry - to investigate the former BN government.

There will be other quick fixes like reducing the price of petroleum products or, at least, halting its increases, applying screws on profiteering and increasing salaries of the civil servants and allowance of quasi government officers like mosque officials - as was done by the DAP in Penang in 2008.

This could be achieved by reducing wasteful expenditures, doing away with extravagance and reducing cost of government procurements through open tender.

The experience with BR1M and election giveaways show that poor Malays and Bumiputeras are easily pacified. This has been copied by the PR governments of Selangor and Penang.

Keeping BN Policies

It will be foolish and dangerous for the PR to do away with the existing policies and programmes. So the core policies and programmes pertaining to the economy and commerce are likely to remain, minus such hypes as transformation and high-income economy.

The new PR government would risk too much if it abandons the existing economic framework altogether although admittedly it has its own sets of economic advisers if it wants to chart a totally new direction. Some of their advisers were from the Umno-BN network.

The next the PR has to convince is the private sector. The businessmen, including those who gain massively from the Ummo-BN government, will shift their loyalty if they are fairly treated.

They will rally around the new government for safety and survival, and may even be willing to make concessions and re-negotiate contracts they obtained from the former BN government.

This should not be a huge problem because many tycoons and big time businessmen have already been befriending and cultivating the PR parties since the 2008 GE.

But should the PR chooses to be vengeful, it risks angering the Malays and losing their support. And this cannot be good as the Malays form the majority and they control the key elements of the government.

The biggest challenge to the PR is keeping peace among its ideologically incompatible members. The recent Selangor Menteri Besar crisis exposed the vulnerability of the PR to inter- and intra-party squabbles. PAS lost Kedah in the last GE due largely to factional rivalries.

Therefore, unless BN goes through a credible transformation and Umno is back in favour with the Malays, in particular the younger ones, the PR stands a fair chance of grabbing Putrajaya in the coming GE.


Monday, November 10, 2014

Perhimpunan Agung Umno: Hentikan Omong Kosong

A Kadir Jasin

[Komen “Anonymous” tidak akan disiarkan. Dalam blog kita ini, pembahas WAJIB ada nama. Nama samaran dan nama pena pun tak apa. Angka pun boleh. Guna nama sendiri macam saya lagilah bagus.]

DALAM dunia “spinning” atau mengolah maklumat menjadi propaganda, perkataan kalah tidak wujud.

Misalnya, walaupun Mohd Najib Abdul Razak gagal mendapat kemenangan besar dalam pilihan raya umum (PRU) pertama beliau sebagai Perdana Menteri tahun lalu namun sampai hari ini pun beliau tidak mengaku kesilapan strateginya.

Sehinggalah giliran Mohd Najib, semua Presiden Umno dan Perdana Menteri menang besar pada PRU pertama mereka. Dengan itu mereka mendapat mandat mutakhir dan tulen yang mengesahkan kedudukan mereka sebagai ketua politik nombor satu negara.

Mohd Najib marah dan enggan terima hakikat bahawa strategi beliau silap dan para penasihat pilihan raya beliau perlu disingkirkan.

Sebaliknya beliau menyalahkan pengundi Cina kerana menyebabkan Tsunami Cina dan mencanangkan hakikat Umno menang lebih banyak kerusi dalam Dewan Rakyat berbanding PRU 2008.

Sahabat baik Mohd Najib, Barrack Obama pun lebih kurang sama. Apabila Parti Demokrat kalah dalam pilihan raya separuh penggal pada 4 Nov lalu, beliau tidak berkata partinya kalah.

Sebaliknya beliau menyifatkan keputusan yang buruk itu sebagai  “shellacking”. Dalam slanga Amerika ia bererti kekalahan teruk. Katanya rakyat menolak Parti Demokrat kerana mereka tidak puas hati dengan ekonomi.

Schultz Pengerusi Parti Demokrat
Tetapi tidak seperti Mohd Najib yang mengetuai Umno dan Barisan Nasional, Obama tidak mengetuai partinya. Dalam sistem Amerika, jawatan Presiden dan ketua parti diasingkan. Ketua Parti Demokrat sekarang adalah wanita bernama Debbie Wasseman Schultz. Dalam Dewan Perwakilan (The House) pula, Demokrat diketuai oleh seorang wanita juga bernama Nancy Pelosi.

Pelosi Ketua Demokrat dalam Dewan Perwakilan
Dengan keputusan itu, Parti Demokrat hilang kawalan ke atas Dewan Perwakilan, tetapi mengekalkan Dewan Senat (The Senate). Kongres (Parlimen) Amerika mempunyai dua dewan – Dewan Perwakilan dan Dewan Senat.

Dan seperti mana-mana parti politik, Demokrat pun menjanjikan kajian menyeluruh mengapa ia kalah tahun ini dan 2010 serta mengapa kempen pilihan raya presiden berjaya, tetapi kempen pilihan raya separuh penggal gagal.

Umno/BN Buat Kajian?

Kembali ke tanah air kita, persoalannya adakah Perdana Menteri tahu punca sebenar beliau gagal dalam PRU tahun lalu dan apakah cara memperbaiki prestasi BN pada PRU akan datang?

Yang kita tahu, prestasi Mohd Najib lebih teruk daripada (Tun) Abdullah Ahmad Badawi pada PRU 2008 dan tidak terdapat tanda-tanda sahih yang Umno dan BN telah bertambah kuat. Malah Mohd Najib sendiri baru-baru ini merintih malu melihatkan ketidakberdayaan Umno Selangor yang beliau sendiri ketuai.

Malah yang menjadi persoalan adalah sama ada Mohd Najib masih ingat bahawa orang Melayu lah yang menyelamatkan beliau tahun lalu dan masih berterima kasih kepada mereka.

Kalau beliau masih ingat dan masih berterima kasih, beliau tentu akan menyatakan sesuatu yang penting seperti menarik balik cadangan beliau memansuhkan Akta Hasutan pada Perhimpunan Agung Umno (PAU) 25 hingga 29 Nov nanti.

Alhamdulillah, semakin ramai pemimpin Umno yang secara terbuka menolak cadangan sebelah pihak Mohd Najib memansuhkan Akta Hasutan. Timbul persoalan, adakah pandangan Umno diketepikan apabila Mohd Najib memansuhkan Akta Keselamatan Dalam Negeri (ISA) dan Ordinan Darurat pada tahun 2011.

Apakah ia adalah hasil cadangan dan desakan golongan liberal yang mengelilingi dan menasihati Perdana Menteri? Adakah suara Umno bukan lagi suara utama yang Mohd Najib dengari selain suara pengampu dan pemuji?

Kalau Mohd Najib masih mengutamakan parti beliau maka wajiblah beliau menggariskan kepada ahli Umno, khususnya dan orang Melayu, amnya pelan besar beliau bagi memperbaiki ekonomi mereka, menyempitkan jurang ekonomi antara Melayu dengan bukan Melayu dan mencari penyelesaian kepada persoalan tanah rizab yang diambil alih oleh kerajaan.

Adakah beliau tahu bahawa ada keluarga nelayan yang makan sajian utama (main meal) hanya sehari sekali dan hadiah paling istimewa mereka janjikan kepada anak-anak mereka kalau cemerlang dalam peperiksaan adalah makan di McDonald?

Tetapi kalau PAU kali ini – macam yang sebelumnya – hanya sekadar memuji, memuja, mengampu dan berlawak jenaka, kemungkinan Umno kalah dalam PRU akan datang adalah besar. Umno dan BN sudah pun ibarat telur di hujung tanduk.

PAU Bukan Untuk Tepuk Sorak Saja
Presiden Umno dan keseluruhan kepemimpinan parti itu perlu membuktikan sama ada rakyat jelata masih didahulukan dan pencapaian masih diutamakan.

Kalau itulah pendirian mereka maka mereka wajib gariskan pelan bertindak bagi mengatasi kemelut ekonomi Melayu/Bumiputera. Antaranya:-

1. Memperkuatkan ekonomi Melayu/Bumiputera selari dengan pertumbuhan ekonomi negara yang Mohd Najib uar-uarkan sebagai kukuh.

2. Mengatasi masalah kenaikan harga barang dan perkhidmatan akibat penarikan balik berperingkat subsidi petrol.

3. Mengatasi kemungkinan kenaikan harga barang dan perkhidmatan akibat pelaksanaan Cukai Barangan dan Perkhidmatan (GST) tahun hadapan.

4. Mengatasi masalah pengangguran di kalangan graduan Melayu/Bumiputera.

5. Mengatasi masalah diskriminasi majikan bukan Melayu terhadap calon Melayu/Bumiputera.

Ekonomi Melayu tidak pernah kuat. Sebaliknya, akibat kenaikan harga barangan pengguna dan perkhidmatan serta kejatuhan harga kelapa sawit dan getah, ekonomi mereka semakin lemah.

Ekonomi Melayu/Bumiputera mustahil boleh diperkukuhkan tanpa penyertaan keseluruhan ekonomi. Kemampuan kewangan kerajaan dan agensi-agensi ekonominya (GLC dan GLIC)  tidak cukup besar untuk tujuan itu.

Petunjuk Pembangunan Bank Dunia mendapati perbelanjaan kerajaan Malaysia bagi tahun 2013 menyumbangkan hanya 13.58% sahaja kepada Keluaran Dalam Negara Kasar (GDP).

Ertinya bagi setiap seringgit yang dijanakan oleh ekonomi Malaysia tidak sampai 14 sen disumbangkan oleh perbelanjaan kerajaan. Lagipun daripada jumlah itu bukan semua diperuntukkan kepada orang Melayu/Bumiputera. Ia adalah untuk semua rakyat Malaysia.

Tanpa penyertaan sektor swasta yang dikuasai orang Cina dan pelabur asing mustahil ekonomi Melayu/Bumiputera boleh diperkukuhkan. Ini adalah realiti kalau para pembesar dan perwakilan Umno faham ekonomi.

Semua pemilik modal, sama ada Melayu, Cina, India atau asing perlu digerakkan secara pujukan, galakan dan paksaan untuk berkongsi perniagaan dengan orang Melayu/Bumiputera serta mengambil dan melatih pekerja profesional dan teknikal Melayu/Bumiputera.

Umno wajib menggesa kerajaan supaya mengembalikan sesetengah unsur Akta Penyelarasan Perindustrian (ICA) yang telah dimansuhkan, khususnya mengenai guna tenaga.

PM wajib menyenaraikan, untuk pengetahuan umum, apakah kemajuan rancangan pemerkasaan ekonomi Bumiputera yang beliau hebah dan hebohkan di UiTM pada 14 Sept tahun lalu. (Baca di sini)

Beliau juga wajib membuat laporan kemajuan saranan guna tenaga sektor swasta yang merangkumi jantina, kaum dan usia yang beliau umumkan 10 April lalu. (Baca di sini).

Rasanya, Mohd Najib sebagai Perdana Menteri mengatasi semua pendahulunya (successors) dalam membuat slogan, janji, ikrar dan dasar, tetapi setakat ini, mungkin antara yang terkebelakang dalam menterjemahkannya menjadi realiti.

Mohd Najib terkenal dengan slogan “I hear you” (saya dengar anda). Atau apakah ini pun omong kosong juga? Kalau beliau benar-benar mendengar keluh-kesah ahli parti dan orang Melayu, beliau perlu berubah atau menghadapi risiko diubah atau parti kalah pada PRU akan datang.


Saturday, November 01, 2014

Leadership Issue: The Jokowi Phenomena

A Kadir Jasin

[NO anonymous comments will be published.  Please use Google Account, OpenID or Name/URL. Pseudonym is accepted. Thank you]

WHILE waiting for the Federal Court to decide  on Anwar Ibrahim’s sodomy appeal, which was initially due to last two days but had since been extended to at least five, let us continue the discussion on leadership.

What will happen to Anwar next week will have an impact on the leadership of our beloved country.

The first three articles in this series were in bahasa Malaysia labelled Isu Kepemimpinan. 

Anwar and some of his lawyers facing the media

A couple of news items published by local and international newspaper as well as the online media in recent days attracted my attention.

One report in The Star, which was a reproduction of a Jakarta Post story, was headlined “Indonesian First Family shuns excessive lifestyles, won’t parade wealth”.

The other, also about President Joko Widodo aka Jokowi, it picked up from The New York Times was headlined “Jokowi in global spotlight”.

President Jokowi and PM Mohd Najib
The third was Star’s report about the wife of the Prime Minister, Rosmah Mansor, wherein she theorised that she became the target of criticism after the critics failed to get at her husband.

The Star headlined, “Rosmah: Critics can’t get at Najib, so they target me”. (Read here).

And the fourth was about the Baling BN MP and Tabung Haji Chairman, Abdul Azeez Abdul Rahim praising Rosmah’s Permata Programme, saying that it had attracted international acclaim.

Abdul Azeez said those against the programme and its patron, prime minister's wife Rosmah Mansor, do so after making "ill assumptions". He said even the Zambia president and queen of Qatar recognised the Permata's contributions. Permata is funded by the taxpayers.

Abdul Azeez Praised the PM's Wife
The Jokowi Phenomena
ABOUT the new Indonesian President, The Jakarta Post report, among other things, says while the children of President Susilo Bambang Yudhoyono might have no reservations about showing off their luxurious lifestyles, Joko “Jokowi” Widodo’s children are the opposite.

“Although they are far younger than the Yudhoyonos, there is no indication that they are fond of the latest Apple iPhone, Land Rover SUVs or high-end fashion, despite the fact that their parents can certainly afford such things.

“As a businessman, Gibran Rakabuming, Jokowi’s eldest child, could afford to take the path of luxurious living if he chooses to.

“But he opts to remain humble, driving a Mazda hatchback bought from the proceeds of his catering and wedding planning business in the family hometown of Surakarta, Central Java,” the reports reproduced from Jakarta Post says.

IN his previous life as a small-time furniture exporter and exhibitor, Joko Widodo was used to erecting stages. But in early November, just days after being sworn in as the president of Indonesia, he will be sharing a stage with the world’s most powerful leaders.
Stories about President Jokowi’s ordinariness, his distaste for opulence, his people-oriented politics and, above all, his abhorrence for corruption are abundant. So far much of superlatives used to describe him appear to be true.

Present at his inauguration in Jakarta on Oct. 20 were world and regional leaders including Mohd Najib Abdul Razak.

Rosmah Theorises About Criticism

SHE described the online “rumours” as malicious and said the public should not believe allegations that she controls her husband and that he is afraid of her.

"I am fully aware of the things said about me on social media. These people just want to topple the government but they can’t get at Najib. So, they get to me," reports The Star on Oct. 23.

"Don't believe and swallow everything you see or read online, such as on Facebook and blogs," Rosmah said at the launch of the national-level International Rural Women's Day celebration on Tuesday. (Read here)

I leave it entirely to readers to judge. As far as I am concerned, I have stated unequivocally that Rosmah is influential in my post entitled “Perdana Menteri Wanita: Mengapa Isteri PM Tak Boleh?” on Jan 16, 2011. (Read here).

Wives Of Past PMs

In the 45 years as a reporter, I came across the wives of all Malaysian Prime Ministers. Some I knew personally some I did not.

I knew the late Tun Sharifah Rodziah, the wife of Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra, because she served us tea at their Alor Star home while we waited for Tunku to wake up from his afternoon nap.

I got to know Tun Dr Siti Hasmah, the wife of Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad in 1964 when Dr Mahathir came to contest that year’s general election in my village.

I knew Tun Endon aka Kak Endon, the wife of Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. She too served me tea when we were discussing a charity project at their Kuala Lumpur residence. Abdullah was then Deputy Prime Minister.

I did not know Tun Rahah, the wife of late Tun Abdul Razak Hussein and the late Tun Suhailah, the wife of the late Tun Hussein Onn. The two sisters were rarely seen in public and hardly heard from.

I know Rosmah for many years. Once or twice she graced event organised by Berita Publishing. On several occasions I was invited for private lunch at their Taman Duta residence.

So I dare say without reservation that Rosmah is influential and the effects of her involvement in the affairs of the state surpass those of the wives of past Prime Ministers.

This is not my conclusion solely. This is what is told to me by people closest to Mohd Najib, including people those who knew him and served him before he married Rosmah. As for me, being old and having been around for a while, I also know Mohd Najib’s former wife. Once or twice I visited him in Kuantan, when he was Menteri Besar.


Monday, October 27, 2014

Isu Kepemimpinan: Memperkatakan PR Melepasi Era Anwar

A Kadir Jasin

[Komen “Anonymous” tidak akan disiarkan. Dalam blog kita ini, pembahas WAJIB ada nama. Nama samaran dan nama pena pun tak apa. Angka pun boleh. Guna nama sendiri macam saya lagilah bagus.]

[FEDERAL Court extended the hearing of Anwar’s sodomy appeal from two to three days due to the voluminous submission by the defence. It will now end on Thursday.

Anwar's lead counsel, retired Federal Court judge Gopal Sri Ram spent the morning making submissions to show that complainant, Mohd Saiful Bukhari Azlan,  was not a credible witness.

Other lawyers who would be making submission on Anwar’s behalf are Ramkarpal Singh, Sangeet Kaur Deo and N. Surendran.

Leading the prosecution is Muhammad Shafee Abdullah.]

TETAPI tanpa keputusan itu pun, kita boleh memperkatakan kepemimpinan dan masa depan Pakatan Rakyat dengan atau tanpa Anwar sebagai ketua.

Pertama sekali, sama ada Anwar bebas atau masuk penjara sekali lagi, hidup kita, seperti kata penulis kanan akhbar The Star, Joceline Tan, akan merasa kesannya.

Menulis dalam edisi Ahad, 26 Oktober, Tan menyimpulkan: “But lives will be impacted again whichever way the court decides next week.”

Ada dua senario kepada situasi ini.

1. Kalau Anwar masuk penjara, Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) dan Pakatan Rakyat (PR) akan kehilangan ketua yang karismatik, tetapi memperoleh simpati. Setelah bercakaran dan kacau-bilau akibat krisis Menteri Besar Selangor, PR memerlukan simpati dan persefahaman penyokongnya, dan

2. Kalau hukuman salah oleh Mahkamah Tinggi dan Mahkamah Rayuan diterbalikkan (overturned) oleh Mahkamah Persekutuan, Anwar akan muncul sebagai makhluk suci yang cuba difitnah oleh musuh-musuhnya. Kedudukan beliau di mata kepemimpinan dan penyokong PR akan bertambah kukuh.

Ramalan PR akan hancur musnah kalau Anwar dipenjarakan mungkin pramasa (premature). Sebaliknya simpati yang tercetus daripada pemenjaraan Anwar akan memberi peluang baru kepada PR untuk memperkukuh dan memperluaskan sokongan. Ia sudah pun sekian lama mempersembahkan liwat 2 sebagai persekongkolan (conspiracy) politik.

Generasi lama sudah semakin lupa dan tidak begitu peduli lagi dengan liwat 1 pada tahun 2000 manakala generasi muda yang kini memegang “trump card” kuasa politik, tidak tahu atau tidak percaya. Pada 8 Ogos 2000 beliau dijatuhi hukuman penjara sembilan tahun atas tuduhan itu.

Akibat pemecatan Anwar daripada kerajaan dan Umno pada tahun 1998, BN hilang sokongan dalam PRU 1999 walaupun ia dipimpin oleh Tun Dr Mahathir yang karismatik dan lincah permainan politiknya. Dr Mahathir mengekalkan majoriti dua pertiga BN.

Ramalan Perlu Berlapik

Ramalan bahawa PR akan berpecah tanpa Anwar perlu berlapik. Ada dua bentuk pemangkin yang membuatkan PR berjaya sejak PRU 2008. Pertama, kemampuan Anwar mencari titik pertemuan di kalangan parti-parti yang berbeza ideologi, khususnya antara DAP dan PAS. Kedua, ia berjaya mengeksploitasi keterdedahan (vulnerability) BN.

Daripada aspek psikologi pula, PR berjaya menjitukan semangat penyokongnya dengan memberikan isyarat yang kuat bahawa mereka boleh mengalahkan BN dan pada masa yang sama mengambil kesempatan daripada kekecewaan penyokong BN terhadap parti mereka sendiri.

Satu lagi faktor yang memihak kepada PR adalah barisan kepemimpinan yang muda. Selain veteran seperti Anwar, Lim Kit Siang, Abdul Hadi Awang dan Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat, parti-parti PR, terutamanya PKR dan DAP digerakkan oleh generasi pelapis.

Gabungan kepemimpinan pelapis yang meluas dengan bilangan pemilih muda yang semakin meningkat boleh menjadi dorongan (impetus) kepada parti-parti PR untuk terus berpakat walaupun wujud perbezaan ideologi dan dasar yang ketara.

Mereka boleh memilih untuk berpecah dan kekal pembangkang atau bersatu dalam kepelbagaian dan membina di atas 52 peratus undi majoriti yang mereka peroleh pada PRU lalu.

Sebahagian kekuatan PR berpunca daripada kelemahan BN. Melainkan BN sudah pulih secukupnya daripada bencana Tsunami Cina PRU 2013, ia tidak mungkin boleh meraih apa-apa faedah daripada pemenjaraan Anwar.

Sebaliknya BN mungkin akan menderita beban tuduhan dan kebencian manakala Anwar akan terus “menerajui” PR dari “suite”nya di penjara. Dan seandainya dibuang kes maka jadilah beliau “makhluk suci” yang kalis fitnah.


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Isu Kepemimpinan: Memperkatakan Sikap Melayu

A Kadir Jasin

SIAPAKAH orang Melayu kalau bukan bangsa yang “moderate” (sederhana), “tolerant” (tahan uji), bertolak ansur dan pemurah?

[NOTA Badan: Minta sangat-sangat ambil perhatian yang komen “Anonymous” tidak akan disiarkan. Dalam blog kita ini, pembahas WAJIB ada nama. Nama samaran dan nama pena pun tak apa. Angka pun boleh. Guna nama sendiri macam saya lagilah bagus.]

Orang Melayu begitu pemurah dan mengalu-alukan tetamu sehingga sanggup mengikat perut, meminjam dan berhutang.

Orang Melayu itulah yang menerima perantau Cina, India dan segala rupa pelarian perang dan pelarian ekonomi. Hasilnya, perantau yang kebuluran dan dianiaya di bumi sendiri menemui kesenangan di bumi Melayu (Malaysia, Indonesia dan Brunei).

Orang Melayu menerima mereka sebagai jiran. Menerima babi dan anjing, tokong dan kuil mereka.

Orang Melayu itu jugalah yang kerana percaya kepada Almarhum Tunku Abdul Rahman Putera Al-Haj menyetujui pemberian kewarganegaraan kepada sejuta lebih perantau Cina dan India pada 31 Ogos 1957.

Orang Melayu itu jugalah yang rela hati memberikan kebebasan ekonomi, pendidikan, bahasa, budaya dan agama kepada warganegara perantau itu.

Kerana Melayu percaya kepada Tunku, Allahyarham Tun Abdul Razak, Allahyarham Tun Hussein Onn dan Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad mereka kekal “moderate” (sederhana), toleransi, bertolak ansur dan pemurah terhadap warganegara keturunan perantau selama hampir lima dekad.

Walaupun mereka ketinggalan dalam banyak bidang, namun mereka yakin hak dan kepentingan mereka seperti termaktub dalam Perlembagaan selamat di tangan Tunku, Abdul Razak, Hussein dan Mahathir.

Tetapi, selepas era empat gergasi Malaysia itu, kepemimpinan Melayu melakukan satu demi satu kesilapan sehingga Melayu kini menjadi bahan caci, fitnah dan benci orang Cina dan India.

Segelintir Melayu yang masih berani bersuara mempertahankan hak mereka dilabelkan “racist” (perkauman) manakala yang mempertahankan Islam dicap “extremist” (pelampau).

Tetapi apabila orang Cina dan India, orang Kristian, Hindu, Buddha dan Sikh bersuara mempertahankan bangsa, agama, bahasa dan budaya mereka, mereka digambarkan sebagai orang terpinggir yang dianaktirikan dan bakal pupus. Mereka dikatakan memperjuangkan hak asasi.

Alhamdulillah, kini semakin ramai orang Melayu dan orang Islam mula sedar bahawa mereka tidak lagi boleh bergantung semata-mata dan bulat-bulat kepada parti-parti politik Melayu/Islam.

Mereka mula bersuara di luar kerangka politik parti. Mereka tidak lagi yakin sepenuhnya terhadap komitmen kepemimpinan Melayu/Islam - sama ada di sebelah pihak Barisan Nasional atau Pakatan Rakyat – untuk mempertahankan Melayu dan Islam.

Orang Melayu dan Islam Malaysia hari ini tetap sederhana, tahan uji, bertolak ansur dan pemurah seperti orang Melayu dan orang Islam Malaysia pada tahun 1957.

Orang Cina dan India pula “menerima” orang Melayu/Islam kerana kuasa politiknya dan mereka berlindung di bawah kuasa politik Melayu/Islam yang toleransi untuk hidup lebih senang daripada di bumi asal mereka.

Gagasan Panca-Mahathir Kelirukan Melayu

Kini banyak orang Melayu/Islam keliru dan curiga dengan pelbagai gagasan, dasar, slogan dan rancangan yang dikemukakan oleh kepemimpinan Melayu kontemporari – daripada Islam Hadhari dan keterbukaan pada era Abdullah kepada 1Malaysia, keterangkuman, kesederhanaan, transformasi dan wasatiah pada era Mohd Najib.

Pada masa yang sama, mereka mula didedahkan oleh media baru/siber kepada fakta dan angka yang menunjukkan bahawa mereka sebenarnya makin tertinggal dan terkebelakang berbanding orang keturunan perantau. Mereka tidak menelan bulat-bulat lagi propaganda dan percubaan tutup buruk (whitewash) media arus perdana.

Mereka juga sudah boleh dengar dan baca dari media siber apa yang orang Cina dan India kata mengenai mereka, bangsa mereka dan agama mereka.

Parti-parti politik Melayu/Islam boleh terus mengutuk dan mempersendakan Ibrahim Ali, Perkasa, Majlis Perundingan Melayu dan NGO-NGO Melayu/Islam lain.

Suara alternatif orang Melayu
Tetapi mereka tidak boleh lari daripada hakikat bahawa NGO-NGO Melayu/Islam ini muncul dan mendapat sokongan sebahagian besar orang Melayu/Islam kerana orang Melayu/Islam tidak yakin lagi kepada kepemimpinan politik Melayu/Islam sebagai pelindung hak dan kepentingan mereka.

Ramai pemimpin Melayu/Islam generasi ini tidak pun faham asas kuasa Melayu. Asas kuasa Melayu bukan ekonomi. Asas kuasa Melayu adalah politik.

Dengan kuasa politik itulah orang Melayu merundingkan kemerdekaan, membuat undang-undang serta menubuhkan perkhidmatan awam, polis dan tentera.

Tetapi selepas era Mahathir, hal itu mula diketepikan oleh kepemimpinan yang mahu dipuji dan dipuja. Mereka mematikan legasi dan menggantikannya dengan dasar liberal dan terbuka tanpa batas.

Mereka dipuji dan dipuja di persada dunia tetapi dihukum teruk pada pilihan raya umum 2008 dan 2013. Akibatnya, orang Melayu/Islam hilang kuasa politik yang dibina melalui darah dan air mata oleh pemimpin Melayu/Islam lampau.

Tertelan Diayah Liberal Berat

Bermula pada era Abdullah dan berterusan ke dalam era Mohd Najib, bukan sahaja kuasa politik Melayu semakin luntur malah undang-undang yang dibuat oleh orang Melayu ketika mereka kuat mula disia-siakan.

Atas nama transformasi politik, Mohd Najib memansuhkan Akta Keselamatan Dalam Negeri (ISA) dan Ordinan Darurat yang dibuat oleh orang Melayu ketika mereka kuat. Sekarang golongan liberal yang kemaruk puji-pujian Barat ini bercadang memansuhkan Akta Hasutan pula.

Maaf cakap, bagi saya semua ini adalah hasil ketohoran pemikiran dan kebutaan sejarah di kalangan elit politik Melayu/Islam masa kini. Mereka mudah termakan dan menelan “hook, line and sinker” segala bentuk diayah golongan liberal Barat.

Golongan ini dari dulu lagi tidak senang dan mendapati aneh bagaimana sebuah negara yang dipelopori orang Melayu/Islam boleh maju, aman dan selamat.

Mereka mahu Malaysia jahanam seperti negara-negara Islam lain. Bagi mereka, pucuk dicita ulam mendatang apabila ada pemimpin Melayu/Islam yang gembira bersekongkol dan bersekedudukan dengan mereka.

Upahnya murah saja – puji dan puja, gambar besar di layar raksasa di Dataran Masa. Dataran Masa adalah terjemahan langsung/literal Times Square di New York.

Wajah Mohd Najib di Layar Elektronik "Dataran Masa" (Penjelasan Pejabat Media PM: Iklan ini tidak dibayar oleh kerajaan)
Umno adalah akar tunjang kuasa Melayu. Umno yang saya kenali dan sokong adalah Umno perjuangan, bukan Umno Presiden atau Umno Majlis Tertinggi. Umno yang berani bersuara bukan Umno yang memuji memuja.

Kita lihat Umno yang mana akan menonjol pada Perhimpunan Agung 25-29 November ini. Adakah ia perhimpunan yang menandakan permulaan kepada pengakhiran Umno atau perhimpunan yang menandakan permulaan kepada pemulihannya.


About Me

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I was born in 1947 in Kedah. I came from a rice farming family. I have been a journalist since 1969. I am the Editor-in-Chief of magazine publishing company, Berita Publishing Sdn Bhd. I was Group Editor NST Sdn Bhd and Group Editor-in-Chief of NSTP Bhd between 1988 and 2000. I write fortnightly column “Other Thots” in the Malaysian Business magazine, Kunta Kinte Original in Berita Harian and A Kadir Jasin Bercerita in Dewan Masyarakat. Books: Biar Putih Tulang (1998), Other Thots – Opinions & Observations 1992-2001 (2001), The Wings of an Eagle (2003), Mencari Dugalia Huso (2006), Damned That Thots (2006), Blogger (2006), PRU 2008-Rakyat Sahut Cabaran (2008), Komedi & Tragedi-Latest in Contemporary Malaysian Politics (2009) and Membangun Bangsa dengan Pena (2009).