Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Campaigning in Bukit Selambau By-Election/ 为武吉士南卯助选

Both by-elections campaign are in full swing. I was in the Bukit Selambau nomination on the 29th March. While is it difficult to gage the exact number of turnout by the PR and BN party members, I must say the days when opposition members with poor turnout on nomination days are over. I would say that the number of members who turn out for nomination is roughly about 5000 from each party. While most of the members who turn out for BN are local, those from PR, I am given to understand are from outside of the state of Kedah.

I attended a dinner on the 29th night where the turnout was about 1000 and I was quite surprised that 75% of the Chinese are Teochew speaking. Since I am Teochew, part of my speech was in Teochew dialect. While I can speak Teochew well, but giving speech in Teochew is difficult. It is a totally different cup of tea. One person who can deliver an excellent Teochew speech impeccably is Datuk Edward Khoo, the MCA Sabah Chief. I must admit I face the dilemma of what to speak that night.

While results of by-election will not alter the balance of political power in the state administration, it is nevertheless important that voters should use their votes wisely to choose their wakil rakyat that can deliver service and represent their interest in state assembly. This will directly affect the level of development at the local level since a hardworking wakil rakyat can make a lot of difference in solving local problems and improving infrastructure within the constituency.

This is a good opportunity to reject irresponsible candidates who after election has no guts to face his voters and then disappeared into the thin air. I urge the voters to reject any forms of violence during the campaign period. We want to see peaceful by-election since violence begets violence.

Chinese voters should also use this by-election to reject PAS. While the candidate is from PKR, it is obvious that the whole election machinery is run by PAS with a sprinkling of DAP supporters. I told the crowd that BN is not a perfect party and government. As a party in power for more than 52 years, while it has done a lot of goods in developing the country, uplifting the standards of education and living in the country, it also has its weaknesses and defects.

The BN government needs to be more fair and transparent in treating all races. Everyone should have equal economic and education opportunities and also to participate in nation building. In the same way, PR is also not perfect. It is in its one year existence as the party in control in the state administration in Kedah.

Its weaknesses are now clearly seen:

1) Till this day, PR in Kedah has never outlined any program or development for the development of Kedah other than:

a) Criticizing the previous administration for its failure or defect but at the same time did not come out with constructive plans for the state government to replace the failed policies. However, the PR state government has done a better job in doing public relation job.

2) Voters have to be critical, both of the BN and PR state government. Have the PR state government fulfilled its pledges contained in its manifesto? It is obvious that the PR state government has failed to fulfill some basic pledges in the state of Kedah:

a) Failure to improve the garbage disposal system;

b) Failure to review quick rent and house assessment as promised;

c) Failure to increase aids to the poor;

d) Failure to fulfill the pledges to state government officials that loan to state government officials will be interest free;

e) Failure to build any childcare centre in factories for the convenience of working mothers.

Have their policies been fair to all races? One glaring example is the 50% quota of bumiputra in all housing development, compared to the 30% previously by BN government. I also noticed that Chinese PR ADUN while attending function hardly gives peruntukan as how it is usual practiced among BN ADUN. Is it because the state government does not allow peruntukan to Chinese temple or just the PR ADUN themselves are not political savvy?

I also touched on local government’s administration and office. This is often the government agency that is nearest to the rakyat and often the weakest link in the government administration. Have their services improved, have they been prompt in attending to complaints, less of corruption and abuse of power?

Have they done anything to improve local traffic flow and the parking problem faced by the community or is it the same old story of inefficiency and indifference displayed by the local authority that was in existence in the previous local government?

Have the state government taken any step to initiate the election of local councilors as promised? The economic downturn is also a challenge to state government. Have concrete steps be taken, at least at state level to cushion the impact of this slowdown? I understand that the state government of Penang has put in place some program to counter this slowdown.

Finally, no one can deny that there is an attempt to implement and emphasized Islamic value and graduate Islamination on all levels of the state administration as practiced in Kelantan.

To say that the BN has not changed since the 308 political tsunami is not true. The fact that Pak Lah willingly gives up his Prime Ministership is an indication that he’s read the mind of the rakyat. Najib has promised that he will undertake reform and changes within UMNO and BN so as to fulfill the expectation of rakyat. The 2 stimulus packages announced by government have special peruntukan for Chinese schools. The first stimulus package is RM50million and in the second stimulus package, I am given to understand will be utilized to build 7 new schools and to relocate 13 schools that add up to a sum of RM100 million.

As for the corruption, the government has set up the Malaysia Anti Corruption Committee (MACC) and the Judiciary Appointment Commission (JAC). Hopefully over time, we will be able to see the effectiveness of the 2 Commissions. Hence, to say that there is no change since 308 is not fair.

I’ve also devoted part of my speech to the implication of PAS government to non-Muslim community. In short, it is a lie to say that Hudud and Islamic law only affect the Muslim. If implemented in the country, it affects the Muslim as well as the non-Muslims. A lot of non-Muslims have indifferences or what we call déjà-vu effect about the implication of Hudud law in our country.

Let’s hope that PAS would never really come to power at the central level. Karpal Singh’s outburst against PAS will not save the day.

After the ceramah, I conducted another ceramah organized by UMNO where there were a crowd of only about 200 people, largely of Malays. Like other UMNO ceramah, there were lots of other speakers, I left after my speech. By then, it was already 11.30p.m.

The next day, I left at 7.00a.m. to go to Simpang in Bukit Gantang to visit the wet market.

3场补选的竞选运动已如火如荼地全面展开。提名日当天,我在武吉士南卯,发现各政盟都出动庞大的助选队伍前往提名中心为候选人打气,各营的助选团估计有5千人。不同的是,国阵的助选人员大多数为地方上的国阵党员,反观民联则广集吉打州以外的党员前往助选。我记得以前的每场选举,战幔未起,国阵就已大张旗鼓声势夺人,反对党的助选团往往寥寥无数,不可抵敌。不过,在今天的政治场景此景已不再现。

29日晚上,我出席了一场千人宴,让我惊讶的是,当晚与会的华裔选民有75%说潮州语。潮州籍贯的我,于是决定以潮语来进行部分的演讲。我必须承认,虽能口操流利潮语,但要以潮语致词真的把我给难倒。记忆中,我所认识的潮籍领袖当中,唯有马华沙巴州联委会主席拿督邱克海能做到这一点。

虽然补选的成绩不能改变现有的州政权或平衡朝野的政治力量,但选民仍须慎用选票,投选一位认真为选民服务、有能力在州议会捍卫和照顾选民权益的代议士。一位勤政的代议士能协助解决地方上的问题,及改善选区内的基建,这也将直接影响地方上的发展水平。

选举也给选民一个机会,用选票否决那些不负责任,当选后即消声匿迹、没有胆量面对选民的候选人。我也敦促选民拒绝在竞选期间发生的任何形式的暴力举动,我们要一场和平的补选。

华裔选民也应该用这场补选来否决回教党。虽然,民联候选人来自公正党,但整个选举机制显然由回教党在操作。我在致词时说,国阵并非完美的政党和政府。无可否认,国阵执政52年以来,确实为国家的发展带来很多建设,当然也同时存有弱点和不足。

国阵政府需要更公平地对待各族群,透明化处理种族议题。全体人民应享有平等的经济和教育机会,以参与国家建设。同样的,民联也并不完美。执政一年,吉打州政府就已暴露其弱点。

截至今天, 吉打民联政府始终没有提出任何具体和有利州内的发展计划。 民联政府的公共关系处理手法比国阵好,但除此以外,我们只看到州政府一味批评前朝政府的失败和不足之余,却没有提出替代方案取代旧政策。

我认为,选民必须一视同仁,不管国阵或民联,我们都要公平地批判。此外,选民应检视民联政府是否有履行他们执政前的承诺?大选迄今,吉打政府依然无法实现选前答应的事项:
a) 改善地方上的排污和垃圾清理问题
b) 没有检讨地税和门牌税
c) 无法增加扶贫援助
d) 无法履行为公务员提供免息贷款的承诺
e) 无法实行在工厂设立托儿所,为职业女性提供护儿便利

再者,吉打州政府的政策对所有族群都公平吗?房屋固打制就是一个明显不公的例子。国阵州政府过去只设定30%固打予土著购屋者,但民联州政府却提高至50%。此外,我也发觉民联的华裔州议员出席活动时,不常拨款予主办单位。这是因为州政府不允许拨款予华人庙宇,抑或民联州议员本身不谙政治常理?

我也谈到地方政府的行政管理。我曾经说过,地方政府是最贴近人民的政府机构,但往往也是政府行政最弱的一环。新政府上任以来,是否有及时处理人民的投诉,减少舞弊和滥权问题?
他们有采取任何行动来改善州内的交通拥挤及泊车位问题吗?还是一如既往,地方政府依然效率低,对民谟熟视无睹?

州政府有何具体行动以落实他们所承诺的地方选举?面对经济萧条的挑战,吉打州政府是否有采取任何措施减轻经济放缓的效应?我所了解的是,槟州政府已提出数项计划应对经济危机。
最后,没人可否认的是,新执政者试图仿效吉兰丹州,在吉打贯彻和落实回教教义,及逐步回教化州的行政事务。

说国阵经历308政治海啸后仍一成不变并不正确。阿都拉自愿交棒,已显示他读懂民意,而纳吉也承诺会对国阵及巫统进行改革,以不负人民的期望。另外,政府也从两项振兴经济配套中拨款予华小,包括增建7间华小和协助13间华小搬迁。

肃贪方面,政府也成立了反贪委员会(MACC)及司法委任委员会(JAC)。希望在不久之后,两个委员会能发挥其角色和功效。

纵观以上几项措施,非议国阵政府冥顽不灵不求改变是不公平的。

10 comments:

notanidiot said...

oh come on, pak lah did not give way because he read the 'rakyat', more so because of internal political pressure from umno goons! if u really want to know what the rakyat wants, dare BN do a referendum on whether we prefer Najib or Pak Lah as PM?!

You see, this is the reason why people don't support BN - because BN lacks reflevity or proper self analysis of their own wrongdoings, and blame it on 'perception' or "PR being better at 'pr'"

After 50 years of BN mismanagement and blatant abuse of power, it will take more than an analysis of what PR has done or not done for the people. To make an 'equal' comnparison of a 50yo party with a new one is sorely lacking in perspective.

if you're hired by dr chua to write his post for him, he should fire you and get someone else to write something that won't insult the intelligent of readers, or backfire any intention of improving his branding.

People said...

Bukit Selambau: You commented the PR supporters during nomination days 29/3/09 are mostly outsiders. Never mind, you have the right to say whatever you like.
Let us see who will be the winner for that day 7/4/09!


Bukit Gantang: I'm a Chinese and I will always vote for PAS/PKR/DAP!

To have you bunch of Bodoh punya Cina MCA are more than enough!

So MCA,PLS STOP THE PROJECT OF MAKING MORE 'Cina Bodoh' like you!

EmahTimah said...

BN ada kelebihan di 2 bukit 1 batang.sila layari http://proumno.blogspot.com/

linda said...

Dato Seri

I am totally disappointed to see you as a past politician in current day politics.

Your assessment of change since 308 is totally out of context. I am afraid to spell loud and clear about how much you and MCA had lost touch on the voters' expectations of BN and in particular to MCA.

Your comment about Abdullah had voluntary relinquished his Prime Ministership is the greatest joke of the day. He had been forced out by the big wigs of UMNO and by the admission of Muhyiddin of his wrong actions (forcing Abdullah out) and by Abdullah's admission of forgiveness to Muhyiddin goes to show you are totally naive in modern day interpretation of political conscience. What a shame!

On the part you mentioned the Govt had initiated and put in place MAAC and JAC, my question is whether it does any good by just having great legislation but ineffective, biased, non-independent enforcement agencies.

MCA should be fighting out equalities for the Chinese along the way UMNO is fighting on an unwavering momentum (in their latest UMNO Assembly)for the Malays. What success has or had MCA achieved in its 50 years of being a BN component party? Politicians only come into the forefront to serve their needs, not the community. Immatured beings with no conscience. Always remember this. There are many Christian MCA leaders and these have forgotten that everything here on Earth is God'd treasures and belongs to God, not Man for that matter. We should have this etched in our mind that God gave these treasures to all men. Politicians have not rights to stake their Godly claims to themselves.

Please be relevant or MCA shall die a natural death along with BN. The rakyat is asking for fairness as Malaysia belongs to all malaysians regardless of creed, color or race.

If Malaysian politicians do not see this as their focus, they should not be in politics as the very essence of politics is for the people, by the people and unless this holds true to all politicians, there is no place for selfish and disgrunted beings in the political arena.

My apologies for being direct to the point as I feel there should be change in this context and not otherwise.

Vince said...

Dr Chua,

On your quote "While most of the members who turn out for BN are local, those from PR, I am given to understand are from outside of the state of Kedah."
This quote is very unwise as you are an outsider therefore do not know if the people is actually local or not. To quote in writing on something you hear is not logical. - 2 cents.
I believe there is plenty of PR support who is local in almost every state given that current lost of confidence in BN. You should understand that better than any one else.
Do not get my intention wrong, as i think underestimating the opponent is grave mistake. :P

magn said...

whatever little respect i,ve wt u is gone now.i though u r one of rare mca leaders still survive but wt this article wt denial syndrome u still dont respect yr readers.
pls dont insult our intelligence

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Mike said...

You are not only blind but deaf as well.

This posting is a waste of time. The MAAC or MCAA whatever you called it is a joke !

If you also talk like that I see no hope for MCA…..

bluesky said...

Dr Chua,

Umno will never change...always talk about ketuanan Melayu, plays perkauman issue...forever....

When report the truth ....new media will be ban....

where is our freedom of voices!!!

BN for me is really no hope!!!

FY said...

Dr. Chua,

Please do not bring up development issues in the state of Kedah. Anyway, the BN governed states of Johor, Negeri Sembilan, Malacca , Pahang , Perlis and Terengganu is much worse.

In Selangor you have a self-declared MR. Clean in the ex-MB Khir Toyol and he had raped and scrapped the Selangor state coffers. Why no comments from you and MCA ?

The BN Federal government is putting wedges in the smooth adminstration in PR controlled states and will not stop using inducement, coercion, threats etc. on PR assemblymen just to destabilise the state governments. Do you sincerely subscribe to such underhand tactics ?

The rubbish collection, water supply etc are all under the Federal government control and they will not stop using their muscles to force these agencies in the state to frustrate the state governments. This is not fair play.

The rakyat are not fools. 50 years is long enough of UMNO's and BN component party's arrogance, corruption and uncaring attitude.

What good is putting in place MACC and JAC when they are no independent ? Do not insult the intelligence of the voters.

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