“The next general election determines the survival of the Malays.”

What PM Najib said in his hometown Pekan did sound a little alarming, but a little prudent thinking should reveal the fact that things need not always work this way.

The Malays have flourished in this land for thousands of years, and have for at least the past 500 years consolidated their culture and political influences.

For example, Najib’s forefathers were Bugis nobles who sailed across the seas from Celebes to settle in Pekan to become local administrators.

From Pekan to Putrajaya, the family’s history over the past few centuries epitomises the continued expansion and penetration of the power of the Malay race

There is a marked increase in our abilities to express, rebuke and redress, even as opposing forces work harder to derail such efforts. And no, this is not peculiar to the urban and suburban denizens, or limited to social networking sites, these traits have stretched to the badlands and lustrous plains alike. Of course, these efforts can be termed rudimentary, but at least it is a start and with concentration and time, one hopes that such actions bear the necessary fruits. It is also premature to celebrate; we have miles to go before we sleep.

But, the events in the last few weeks have been testimony to the amplification of the weakest voices even as very limited media attention came its way.

Will that age-old forte be obliterated overnight just by an election? Unimaginable, I would say.

Democracy works around the head count, and power is determined through quantitative supremacy. This, coupled with a decisive constitutional shield, should give every Malay peace of mind and allow them to be completely reassured.

Najib’s statement could best be interpreted as an election discourse engineered to create a sense of insecurity among the Malays and divert their ballots in favour of the ruling coalition.

This is, anyway, a badly outdated trick.

In no way will America’s Republican candidate say, “The next presidential election shall determine the survival of White Americans. If you don’t support the Republican or Mitt Romney, the destiny of White Americans will be at stake!”

Such a trick won’t sell among overwhelming majority of White Americans who do not believe their common destiny is in the hands of a single political party, while non-Whites will feel sidelined and alienated.

Of course, this thing is not going to happen any time in the United States; neither is Romney willing to reduce himself or his party to a narrow-minded outfit serving only one particular community. There is no place for such nonsense in pluralistic America.

Similarly, as Malaysia is gearing towards greater openness and diversity, such senseless election discourse will not be allowed to take root.

The survival of a race will not depend on a single political party nor the survival of a political party on a single ethnic group.

This is a political reality. A political ideal.

The survival of a race lies with its own determination and competitiveness. A people who is diligent and strong-willed will thrive anywhere under the sun.

A political party can come and go; none is as indispensable as to entail the survival of the entire community.

Jewish Americans do not need an ethnic party to safeguard their existence. They prosper on their own wisdom and hard work.

The survival of a political party lies with its inclusivity, not exclusivity. A party thrives on its superior policies and administrative capabilities, not its ethnicity.

A normal and progressive country is one where all its peoples will enjoy the prosperity, progress and freedom of that country, something not reserved for any particular community.

As such, political leaders must be magnanimous enough to generously accommodate all peoples. Both the BN and Pakatan Rakyat must position themselves as parties that serve the nation in the interest of all.

Those in power have no choice but to listen to the loud Malay voice even as they wish for it to remain feeble and make endless attempts to drown our voices with their arrogance and blustering. Your voice and your opinion is yours alone and nobody can quell it and especially when it is synchronized collectively and peacefully with those other voices which have the best interests of this country at heart. When you notice something amiss, raise your voice and shun the BERSIH attitude, this bERSIh is the root cause for the common man’s life to be valued as ‘cheap’. We have but ourselves to blame. However, when protests turn violent and when damage to people and property are caused as was the case in AMBIGA and even more recently at suaram,

Amid swirling speculation of high-level political intrigue within Malaysia’s ruling Umno party, as well as accusations Prime Minister Najib Razak was taking ‘revenge’ against SUARAM for initiating the Scorpenes corruption trial in Paris, the Malaysian leader is likely to earn himself another black eye when his administration brings charges against the country’s largest NGO later this week.

“BN just put another nail to its coffin by charging SUARAM. Making international news for all the wrong reasons,” DAP lawmaker Hannah Yeoh, the assemblywoman for Subang Jaya, said on Twitter.

“The grapevine has it that this action against SUARAM is aimed to embarrass Najib and who would have control over the government agencies and ministries to get them to take action? Can only be some very powerful people in Umno itself, right?” an Umno watcher told Malaysia Chronicle.

The announcement by Domestic Trade Minister Ismail Sabri Yaakob to prosecute SUARAM’s operating entity for “misleading accounts” comes just a day after 56 international NGOs signed a joint statement to protest the heavy-handed move.

But according to Ismail Sabri, there was no malice in the proposed action to be taken by the Companies Commission of Malaysia against Suara Inisiatif within the next 2 days.

“We will take legal action on Suara Inisiatif based on accounts that was reported to us… there are misleading elements in accounts,” Ismail told reporters on Tuesday.

“In one year, we investigate over 200 cases, Suara Inisiatif is one of them… not because we have personal problems with Suara Inisiatif.”

No longer about receiving ‘foreign funding’

Ismail also said the CCM was not bringing charges against Suara Inisiatif for receiving foreign funds. However, the minister declined to reveal the specific clause in the Companies Act 1965 that will be used to bring charges against Suara Inisiatif within the next two days, saying that the Attorney-General will decide on the charge.

Nonetheless, the sudden switch in charge to “misleading accounts” was in itself suspicious, said SUARAM supporters. SUARAM and its premises have been the target of several raids, mostly on the basis that it had allegedly received foreign funding including from billionaire George Soros.

“It is the usual runaround and hypocrisy from the Umno-BN government. The facts are SUARAM took initiative to voice out against purchase of Scorpene submarines. It pointed out the extreme overpricing and warned against kickbacks to Umno leaders including Najib himself,” PKR chief for Rembau division Badrul Hisham Shaharin told Malaysia Chronicle.

“When the Malaysian government refused to investigate, SUARAM went to Paris to complain about DCNS overcharging us for the Scorpenes to compensate for the possible bribes paid to the Umno guys. The French court has deemed there is sufficient evidence to begin an investigative trial and this is now ongoing. Malaysians should thank and honor SUARAM, not charge it for all sorts of ridiculous accusations. This is just like prosecuting Rafizi Ramli for blowing the whistle on the Shahrizat family for the NFC corruption debacle.”

Umno intrigue: Najib a liability?

In 2002, Najib who was then Defense Minister, had hammered through a controversial deal with French naval firm DCS to buy 2 Scorpene submarines for a staggering RM7.3billion despite the ships being unsuitable for the nation’s shallow coastal waters. Najib’s close aide Razak Baginda was accused to taking a 114 million euros or RM570mil kickback for securing the green light from the Malaysian government for the acquisition.

In 2010, a frustrated SUARAM lodged a complaint with the authorities in Paris. If DCNS is found guilty of having corruptly induced Malaysian officials to buy the Scorpenes, it may have to pay compensation to the Malaysian people. Such a verdict would also seal the Malaysian people’s suspicion that their leaders had misbehaved in the Scorpenes deal.

Najib’s political neck is now on the line and with general elections due to be called within the next few months, there is enormous pressure on him to deflect attention from himself and his Umno party.

Najib also faces strong political rivalry including from his own deputy Muhyiddin Yassin and former premier Mahathir Mohamad. There are many who believe that the latest move against SUARAM comes from within Umno, from rivals either wishful of squeezing concessions from him, embarrassing him and even hopeful of ousting him before calling for nationwide polls. There are numerous factions within Umno who see the scandal-tainted Najib as a liability rather than as an asset.

Intertwined with the Scorpenes purchase is the murder of a Mongolian translator Altantuya Shaariibuu in 2006. She was Baginda’s former mistress and although Najib has denied ever knowing her, she is widely believed to have been his lover as well. It is also believed that she was killed for her knowledge of the Scorpenes deal.

Coincidentally, two of Najib’s former bodyguards were found guilty of shooting her and bombing her body with C4 explosives to prevent identification. But although they are awaiting their hanging sentence, most Malaysians believe they acted on the orders of unidentified “higher-ups”.

Another international debacle

Meanwhile, Ismail insisted that apart from the CCM, five other government agencies are involved in the probe against SUARAM and have agreed to take action based on existing legal provisions. He said the CCM’s scope of investigation was based on five sections in the Companies Act — sections 364 (2), 166A (3), 169 (14), 167 (1), 167 (2), 132 (1).

Whether they realize it or not, Ismail and the Malaysian government might be running foul of United Nations guidelines. The UN Special Rapporteur on the situation of human rights defenders, Margaret Sekaggya has underscored the importance to access to funding, including foreign funding, as an inherent element of the right to freedom of association.
Such a stance is reflected in Article 13 of the UN 1998 Declaration on Human Rights Defenders according to which: Everyone has the right, individually and in association with others, to solicit, receive and utilize resources for the express purpose of promoting and protecting human rights and fundamental freedoms through peaceful means.

“Firstly, we stress that SUARAM’s registration as a company under the Registrar of Companies, as is the case for many other NGOs in Malaysia, precisely results from the barriers and obstacles in getting registration as a society under the Registrar of Societies. This has been pointed out by numerous human rights reports on Malaysia since the 1990s. The fact that many NGOs in Malaysia have failed to obtain registrations under the Societies Act, and thus had to register as companies, is an indication that the right to freedom of association in the country is severely restricted,” said the 56 NGOs in their joint statement to the Malaysian government.

“Secondly, we strongly condemn the Malaysian government’s attempts to discredit those who receive foreign funds for their human rights work, including insinuations made in the media[1] and in international fora[2] that foreign funded-organizations, including SUARAM, may have hidden political agendas. Such insinuations are in bad faith and irresponsible.”

then such voices need no sympathy or support. Non-violent resistance is civil resistance, everything else is most certainly not, and it remains the most effective weapon, the sooner this is understood, the better. The sooner the voices come together, the better. The sooner the Government hears our collective voices, the better.The voice of the people is the voice of Godreadmore.http://nambikaionline.wordpress.com/2012/09/18/when-malays-are-finally-getting-bolder-and-louder-najib-start-to-shiver/


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