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Confronting The Fear of Change

This is an article that I have written a few months after the 2008 political tsunami, which I think is still very much relevant today.

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I received an sms yesterday with questions which I think are worth answering/discussing. The sms had 7 or 8 concerns if you will and is repeated below:-

“Please seriously consider the following in the future Pakatan:

1. The implication of Anwar’s over promised populist approach to the non-Malays, which may carry negative implications to PAS Malays thresholds.

2. DAP and PKR extremists, liberalists within the administration that might create social insecurity among the Malay PAS supporters.

3. The mass defection of UMNO MPs with their corrupt culture into PKR that takes lead in Pakatan direction.

4. The Islamic social welfare policies versus drastic fiscal policies that piggy back on budget deficits that subsidies populists at the expanse of future generation

5. Where is PAS in the whole process? Where are we heading? We may have destroyed the evil UMNO, but invited the Satan that bow to US and foreign super power.

6. Malay unity is very crucial to the Malaysian social, economic stability. Please mirror Indonesian’s reformasi. The people still struggle since 1998, while national economic resources are gang raped by super power.

7. Why not PAS take the leading role in forming the next government and unite Malays?

Don’t know what is best? The survival of PAS is at stake. It’s definitely sure US is behind Anwar to destroy NEP which is our social engineering insurance for stability. Now our country is heading towards anarchy situations!”


I cannot help feeling sorry for the person who is genuinely fearful of the impending change. I believe his concerns are sincere and I wish to address them as follows:-

1. Anwar’s so called ‘over promised populist approach to the non-Malays’ as he puts it needs to be specified so that we understand what exactly he is worried about. There is this impression, for which UMNO is obviously responsible, that Anwar is selling out the Malays and Islam. I do not agree. To address the issues raised by the non-Malays, within the framework of the National Constitution is not tantamount to ‘selling out’ the Malays and Islam. This is as the position of both is firmly rooted in the same Constitution. So, in short, if he can try to specify where exactly Anwar ‘sells-out’, it is difficult to answer this question. He may find, to his surprise, that once he sits down to list all the items, he will end up with a blank page! This is the power of ‘perception’ which everyone talks about in the realm of politics.

2. The term ‘extremists’ which he uses here, I presume are the liberalists which once placed in the new administration will have a field day and turn his world upside-down. Again this is the perception and again I stress that everything which will be implemented needs to conform to the Constitution.

Secondly, we will rule by consensus (Perak being a salient example) and while PAS is a minority partner in the current set-up, we will ensure that justice will always be the prime consideration in all policies and decisions. We too have no intention of ‘selling-out’ anybody. I think the major question here that everybody has to answer is “can there be justice for everyone?” If the answer is yes, then there is no problem to proceed. However if it is sincerely believed that it is an unachievable ideal then why bother in the first place? For PAS we believe that justice was the purpose of the Prophets (May peace be upon them) and based on Islam, all are to be given their rightful share.

3. PKR may be taking the lead but they know as much as we do that they cannot lead where we do not wish to follow. We are not tied by our nostrils. That is partly the reason why PR will work. In the BN, UMNO was too dominant. Everything just got bulldozed through. When one started lining his pockets, true to the saying, “if you cannot beat them, join them”, the rest followed in droves.

As for the mass defection of the UMNO MPs with their corrupt culture, I wonder, would it be seen as a problem if they defected and joined PAS?

4. A lot of words but an equal amount of assumptions. “Budget deficits subsiding populists” etc. etc. The current BN budget is a deficit budget. It subsidises cronies and leaves the crumbs to the general population. It proceeds with Mega projects worth Billions while the returns are uncertain. As for the future generation, their future starts now! If the majority of parents are too busy making a living and financially very hard pressed, what future can they have?

We will be equally responsible to ensure that the PR budget is a responsible budget with the Islamic Welfare objectives clearly in sight. Again PKR does not rule alone.

5. PAS is strongly entrenched in the states which we have won. Our role in the defection of the BN MPs in Sabah and Sarawak is admittedly limited due to our limited presence there. However, it does not mean we have no role in the end, which is what matters.

The Satan referred to is Anwar, I presume. Well, again, thanks to the BN, this is a perception within certain quarters. Personally I have known Anwar for many years, since the 70s. His is a challenging life and all credit to him, he survived where many lesser men would have succumbed easily. I do not see any justice in the perception of him as Satan and unless people can, again, come up with specific charges which are proven without a shadow of a doubt; they should not go around making such statements. The Satans I see are those who line their pockets with the money that is meant for the poor, persecute people for no reason besides their dissent and the such. As for bowing down to the US, well again that is an unsubstantiated charge.

6. Yes it is true that Malay unity is important and we will work to build this but on the ruins left behind by UMNO. We have always stated that it is UMNO who stood in the way of the unity of the Malays and the Malaysians as a national entity. The time has arrived for us to prove this. Getting cold feet already ah? Biasalah tu!

7. Yes, this is what we all hope for, that PAS will be able to be at the fore-front of all things. However, this is something we will have to work for and not just demand. We have to believe that we can prove ourselves to the rakyat that we are the best. We cannot do this until we are free of the constraints placed, both physical and psychological, by UMNO/BN. Then we will be able to convince the Malays and the non-Malays that we are worthy of their trust and the most capable to lead this great country of ours. BUT this starts with a step forward, not backwards.

The NEP has been placed in the dustbin by BN long ago! The so-called DEB had been ‘upgraded’ to the DEC (Dasar Ekonomi Crony) years ago and while giving the Malays the crumbs, they kept the majority in poverty and thus dependent. UMNO had the gall to parade themselves as the saviors of the Malays! We need to wake up and realize that the opportunity for real change and real solutions has arrived. Seize the moment and Tawakkal alAllah!

Original post: Confronting The Fear of Change (4 September 2008)

WaLlahu 'Alam
KHALID SAMAD

Comments

凡人 said…
Thank you YB Khalid Samad.

I'm a chinese, and we feel so helpless and sad when all the BN leader, media point the gun at us.. labeling us 'Chinese tsunami' and Mahathir even said we chinese refuse the hand from Malay. Not to mention seeing all comment asking us to 'balik cina'.

We are Malaysian, we born here, raise here and we shall die here. New generation like me don't believe in China Communist, they are nothing but lier, lier to their people and to the world. How can we make those Malay understand, we oppose BN because we love Malaysia, not because we want to take over the country.

I actually plan to go Australia taking their Medical Degree Entrance Exam (AMC Exam) so I can pursue my postgrade study as a specialist in Australia. I postpone the exam from last December till now, in fear missing the General Election. In that night, seeing all type of scandal bought about by BN, I cry helplessly until sunrise.

I wish to stay and contribute my part, in any possible way, but my parent may not understand my will.

Going to Australia or not, I'll find any possible way to help and to contribute. I'll never give up Malaysia citizenship. If I go, I'll came back here once I done my Master degree.

Lastly, thank you for everything you and Pakatan Rakyat have done.

I'll pray for a better Malaysia.

Regards.
WLTan

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