Wednesday, March 24, 2010

The time has come for an innovative political reform!

(Image taken from

The BN has been governing the country for many years now. Whilst I do agree that a lot have been achieved since independence, I also do have regrets that a lot were not done, if not could have been done better or differently. Looking at the political scenarios of other developed countries, it is unsurprisingly common to see the establishment of a two party system, which many economist and political analyst would argue as a necessity to provide the check and balances for a country to be well governed. And a political party gets elected as the government via a fair voting process. This is what we call democracy. And the experts say that democracy is good for the country, irrespective of which country!

Malaysia achieved independence in 1957- that's almost 53 years ago. We have only just started to form a “not-quite” two party system. I say not quite because though we now have PKR-DAP-PAS as another possible ruling coalition, we still have yet to break the monotony (for a lack of better word) of having the same ruling party governing the nation. Some states have seen changes especially in the last vote, but not the country as a whole. I am not vouching for this alternative coalition, but I feel that the whole check and balances argument is valid to prevent complacency and entrenchment from creeping in.

So yes, we are close to establishing a more desirable political system. But what we are lacking is the political maturity that is needed for a two party system. A healthy competition between the two parties has to be established for good nation building. It is okay to be critical of each other, if it is for the good of the rakyat. It is okay to be challenging and difficult, if being difficult would mean that the rights of the rakyats are taken care of. But what good is a two party system, if it is to only look after the self-interest of the politicians. What are we trying to achieve if parties are vengeful against each other at the detriments of the rakyat. Be professional, is all I am asking for.

If ruling party loses a state, then accept it with grace, acknowledge that the rakyat has chosen the then opposition and only have yourself to blame for not trying harder to please the rakyat. And do not take it out on the rakyat, because without us, you will not even be there in the first place. And using your federal power to suppress the lost-out state will only show your lack of professionalism and political immaturity, and the deep rooted vested interest political fundamentals of the party.

And the same professionalism and maturity has to be shown by the opposition. The role of an opposition in a two party system is not to oppose every single thing just for the sake of opposing. Oppose to what is wrong and work with the government if it is right, because at the end of the day, even if political parties are slow to mature, the rakyats are maturing at an even faster pace. We see what is happening in the political arena, and playing dirty politics as a populist measure will not win the hearts of the rakyat. If you take your opposition role to an extremely personal level, I question if you have the ulterior motives of a vested interest politician.

The adage “whatever happens in Texas, stays in Texas” is very much applicable in this country too. Whatever bickering that happens in this country, must only be kept within this country. Whatever dissatisfaction that is felt is expressed only within the country. The rule-of-thumb is to never complain to a foreign country or bitch about Malaysia to other countries because it really does make you wonder if you are truly faithful to the country. How can you sell your country by revealing the dirt to outsiders? It is like being in a marriage. Would you really tell outsiders about the bedtime inadequacies of your partner, or in other words would you really tell the world about your partner’s kinky fetish? Although you have differences in political fundamentals, both parties are essentially representing the common rakyat. So that does make you partners. Partners in trying to develop the country. Partners in ensuring only the best for the rakyat. To the outside world, both parties are Malaysian parties. To the outside world, it does not matter if you have different believes. If you continue to bicker in public, condemning the country to the external public, the external public would not see any shortfalls as being due to the ruling party, but rather a shortfall of the country. The country would get bad press. The country would get a bad name. See the following links for a recent bickering that was taken to the international level by the so-called politicians that are there to safeguard current and attract future foreign direct investments.

What are we trying to achieve here ? Who are we trying to impress? The Americans?

The time for a political reform is definitely now. We established a political system that had worked in the past. But in the past, it was a single party system. Now, we have a two party system, and it is here to stay for much longer. And unless we find innovative ways to co-exist and work together, we will not go anywhere as a country. This is a new field to us. But the world does not care if we are a newbie to this arena. No one will buy us some time to acclimatize to this new scenario. All countries are running, but some are running faster than the others. We can’t afford to slow down to learn to adapt to the new system. There is just no time. Pick up where we left off, and continue sprinting. Continue developing the country. Continue to improve our education system. Continue to attract more foreign investments. Because every second we stop to argue, we are losing to other countries that are eager to develop and are offering better and more attractive conditions for investments.

China has an autocratic political system. It is much easier to implement changes in China. So do we really want to delay, procrastinate or even stall progress?

1 comment:

    Although this site is for the UK, you may find the ideas on government interesting.