The following is an extract of what Dzulkifli Ahmad, columnist for malaysiakini wrote in his article titled ‘UMNO did it again’ in reference to the recent UMNO general assembly – I am sure we all know what he meant by ‘did it again’:
The consequences were horrendous. It was the real Umno ‘unplugged’. It was a ‘no-holds-barred’ kind of outrageous display of unbridled arrogance.
Brandishing the unsheathed keris again by the Umno Youth leader, was offensive enough, but the readiness ‘to die in a blood-bath’ was atrocious and entirely unsolicited.
A Perlis’ delegate remarks of ‘when the keris will be used’, after it has been unsheathed, waved and kissed by the youth leader, not only angered an opposition leader but ruffled feathers with the entire nation. Umno has turned back the clock of nation-building by decades.
As if the actions of the Youth leaders of Umno were insufficient to incite hurt and animosity, a veteran Umno leader saw fit to remind everyone that Malays (read: Umnoputras) are very capable of exhibiting the ‘amok’, when challenged.
Reminders of the May 13 incident were conveniently cited and oft-repeated.
Then Dzulkifli came to what was missing (or deliberately masked by the above racist polemics).
Overwhelmed by the immediate interest of their ‘entitlements’ and ‘sacred’ rights that now seemed challenged, this assembly of the Malay political party has willfully deluded themselves from addressing malignant problem that will indeed obliterate them forever viz; the scourge of corruption.
No delegates dared touch the subject with any vigour nor rigour, as were exhibited in discussing their ‘Malay Agenda’. None spoke of the Corruption Perception Index of the Transparency International that has further relegated the country performance to 44th position i.e. slipping further from 39th. Any guess of who the greatest perpetrators were?
If corruption wasn’t the focus, so [neither] was the discussion on the competitiveness of the Malay race, much less of the nation’s competitiveness in facing the ever-increasing global business challenge.
Most disgustingly, we are cruelly reminded that this [UMNO] is the backbone, if not, the government of the day. This is the annual assembly of the party of policy-makers and the political masters that determine the destiny of this nation.
Any serious attempt at addressing the issue of the flagging inflow of FDI, is naively rationalized as caused by our own lack of interest in merger and acquisition (M&A), hence the failures to entice foreign capitals.
When has FDI been hinged on M&A of critical and strategic assets of the nation? Are we in denial of losing out to even our immediate neighbours?
Are we facing a perception problem here? I’m afraid it is more than just perception. It is real. It’s the sum total of two basic malaise of our nation viz lacking competitiveness and integrity. What has happened to the grand launching of the National Integrity Plan of April 2004 by the president-cum-PM?
We know the blood curdling threats and racist statements were meant to divert Malay attention from:
(1) the embarrassing question of why ‘wealth’ and ‘prosperity’ haven’t flowed on downwards to the Malay masses when the bumi equity percentage target has long been reached and indeed surpassed but accrued in the hands of the elite few;
(2) the rampant corruption, a glimpse of which has been arrogantly displayed by the inexplicable lifestyles of UMNO leaders (too many to name here) and their defiance and contempt of the law (by MPs like Cyclops, etc);
(3) the Mahathir factor, or more precisely, his anger with AAB and his SIL and cohorts on certain specific issues.
KTemoc recalls what Abraham Lincoln once said: “You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time, but you cannot fool all the people all the time.”
I believe UMNO has, though its 50 years of perpetuating government mismanagement, reached the third component of Lincoln’s saying, which may explain why Dzulkifli described the UMNO assembly succinctly as:
"... going by the events in the recently concluded Umno general assembly, calling it as the most bizarre is still an understatement. It is the worst ever. Anything beyond, borders on and tantamount to a declaration of ‘war’ - Umnoputeras versus the rest of the nation."
above underlining is mine