Monday, November 06, 2006

AAB the 10th Sultan?

Remember Dr M Bakri Musa, the surgeon who practises in Califormia, and noted by KTemoc as an admirer of old school leaders like Tun Razak and Ku Li. I blogged on one of his articles which wasn’t flattering for AAB in Abdullah Ahmad Badawi Revisited.

Well, here’s what he has to say of the meeting between Dr Mahathir and AAB, again none too flattering for the PM. In fact Dr Bakri termed AAB’s performance as pathetic:

Abdullah's performance after (and also presumably during) his one-on-one meeting with his predecessor was pathetic. If Abdullah cannot stand up to Mahathir, how on earth can we expect Abdullah to look after the nation's interests in even tougher negotiations with foreign leaders?

Mahathir effectively reduced Abdullah to an errand schoolboy guilty of being delinquent in his homework and now has to write down a hundred times, "I must pay attention to my work and not doze off!"

According to Abdullah, Mahathir did most of the talking. Abdullah by his own admission was too polite to interfere. Touching! According to Mahathir (and Abdullah corroborated this), he brought up the very same issues he had been harping on for the past few months.

Abdullah does not need to listen to the details again; presumably he had heard them before and would by now be ready with the answers and rebuttals. Malaysians and the world have certainly heard Mahathir's litany of complaints. What he and we needed were answers. Yet there was the sorry sight of Abdullah pleading for more time! If Abdullah does not get it by now, he never will.

What Abdullah should have done when Mahathir began to repeat what he had said many times before was to stop him cold and assert, "With due respect Tun, I have heard them all before, and many times over. Let me address them one by one!" With that, effectively take over the meeting. Then we would know who was in charge!

After the meeting, Abdullah should have called for a press conference and publicly invited Mahathir to join in. That of course would take confidence and leadership, the very qualities so clearly lacking with Abdullah.

Instead it was Mahathir who gave not one but two press conferences to let the public know what transpired between them. Abdullah was reduced to whining and complaining that Mahathir was spewing ‘venom’. He took solace behind the protective but ineffectual barks of his ministers and spinmeisters.

Abdullah forgot that the issues Mahathir raised are also very much in the public mind. He owes Malaysians, not just Mahathir, an explanation. Whining, maintaining an ‘elegance silence’, or asking his surrogates to answer for him merely exposes Abdullah lack of engagement. What we have in Abdullah is not a chief executive but a pseudo sultan, and not a very regal one at that. Malaysia already has nine sultans; it does not need a tenth.

During this past Ramadan, Abdullah was busy being an imam, dispensing homilies and delivering sermons. Again, Malaysia has no shortage of imams and khatibs, what it needs desperately is a chief executive.

Hmmm, very harsh analysis but I have to say, very true. But perhaps as suggested by Dr Bakri, AAB wasn’t able to address Dr Mahathir’s queries (which everyone in Malaysia knows because Dr Mahathir has asked them openly so often), - perhaps his (AAB) reason was the most obvious but unmentionable.

1 comment:

  1. I have read a number of postings by this Dr Bakri and it's clear he has a sharp, incisive mind and he doesn't sound to me to be bigoted or racist either. There are in fact a number of people whose regular postings strike me as being reasonable, patriotic, idealistic and fair-minded. To all these people, my appeal to you is: Why don't you enter politics? The nation needs people like you, and the populace, most of whom aren't capable of speaking up for their rights, needs you.

    At present, quite likely many politicians holding office are nothing more than just greedy, self-serving knaves who are more interested in the perks of the post and in lining their own pockets rather than in really serving the nation and the people. There are, of course, politicians who are contrary to that; people who are honest and sincerely serving their constituents. Unfortunately, this group of honourable politicians are far too few in number and consequently they often get shouted down and elbowed aside by their loud-mouthed, uncouth, thuggish and corrupt colleagues. Hence this appeal to those who have a sincere wish to do good and who are able to, to enter the political arena in order to redress the great imbalance between the good (minority) and the bad (majority). The nation and the people are bound to benefit from it.