But her statement about offering herself as an ”independent candidate to Pakatan Harapan (PH)“ in the 14th general elections was confusing.
If Maria, who has resigned as head of Bersih 2.0 to join politics, wants the freedom to have her own position on various issues, then she should contest as a true independent and run against both PH and BN. Rather than to run on a PH ticket without joining one of its component parties.
Why should any political party give up a seat? In the unlikely event that any PH party gives Maria a parliamentary seat, they will probably try to persuade her to join formally after the election.
If Maria generally agrees with PH policies, then there is no reason why she shouldn’t join one of its component parties.
There is nothing wrong with joining a political party if you support its ideology. Politics shouldn’t be seen as “dirty.”
KT note: Well said, Su-Lyn, though I must admit for a moment I did wonder whether Waythamoorthy who must be feeling bloody slighted by Pakatan's preferential treatment for newcomer Maria Chin had campur tangan in your fine article, wakakaka. Sorry, Waytha.
a man already with a party but still loses out to lonesome Maria Chin
So I understand why Maria is reluctant to formally join a PH party but she can’t have her cake and eat it too.
Either she joins a party that best aligns with her personal ideology (and try to change party culture from within to give elected representatives more freedom), or she stands on her own ticket as an independent. I wish that she would have the courage to do the latter.
That' her, Maria Chin Abdullah who while as Chair of BERSIH was being pro Pakatan.
Her announcement, so close to GE14, made me question if Bersih 2.0’s fight against the redelineation exercise was genuine or in the interest of PH.
Despite the many real concerns of racist gerrymandering, the redelineation exercise is long overdue since the last time constituency boundaries were redrawn was in 2003 for the peninsula and Sabah, 2005 for Sarawak. Redelineation must be done within eight years of the last review, according to the Federal Constitution.
But perhaps the biggest civil rights movement in Malaysia does not care about being labelled pro-opposition (because it has decided to openly stump for PH), in which case, Bersih 2.0 should find another cause to fight for.
It is fine to endorse the Opposition, but Bersih 2.0 cannot then fight for electoral reform because the very nature of elections is so closely intertwined with political parties that it requires neutrality, compared to issues like gender equality or climate change that aren’t directly linked to political players.