4:15pm 10/11/2023
Fairer allocations to curtail political turmoil
By:Sin Chew Daily

Vicious political fights are never a good thing for the country’s development.

Starting from mid-October, we have so far seen a total of four Bersatu MPs announcing their support for Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim. They are: Kuala Kangsar MP Iskandar Dzulkarnain, Labuan MP Suhaili Abdul Rahman, Gua Musang MP Mohd Azizi Abu Naim, and Jeli MP Zahari Kechik.

They all gave the same reason that they hoped to get allocations for their constituencies by supporting the Unity Government, but they still pledged royalty and would not quit their party.

According to Perikatan Nasional, when they were negotiating allocations with the Unity Government, the government set out very stern conditions and as such, they said they had stopped negotiating with Deputy Prime Minister Fadillah Yusof over the allocations.

Suhaili has revealed to the media that a week after he announced his support for PM Anwar, his application for allocations was approved by the government.

This means that any opposition MP pledging support for the Unity Government until the next general election will get the allocations for their constituencies.

PM Anwar has repeatedly urged the PN not to hold an arrogant attitude on the issue of equal allocations for opposition constituencies. The thing is, equal allocations has been pledged by Pakatan Harapan in its election manifesto.

As opposition, PH has in the past been unfairly treated on the issue of constituency allocations, and by right should know that punishing voters in opposition seats contravenes the pledge they once made.

Bersatu supreme council member Wan Saiful Wan Jan is obviously furious that several of his party’s lawmakers have crossed the line, arguing that they have reneged on the mandate and expectations from the voters who supported them in election because they agreed with Bersatu’s political struggle.

PN chairman cum Bersatu president Muhyiddin Yassin said he had been tipped that the government was trying to bribe and threaten their MPs in a bid to undermine the strength of PN and Bersatu.

Bersatu has announced suspension of the party membership of Iskandar and Suhaili, while Mohd Azizi and Zahari Kechik say they are prepared for disciplinary action from the party.

The core spirit of Anwar’s Malaysia Madani concept has been equality and fairness, but to compete with PN, he has apparently sidetracked from this central conviction.

There’s no sign the confrontation between PN and the Unity Government will ebb following these incidents. On the contrary, a new round of vicious fights is just about to start, and this does not augur well for the country’s development.

What the Unity Government must do now is to draw up sound policies and conform to its reform pledges while striving to woo foreign investments to lift the country’s economic development.

As for the opposition, their responsibility is to assume the role of watchdog.

The adoption of anti-hopping law should ensure political stability, but sadly this is not the case in reality.

Malaysians in general believe that the anti-hopping law will effectively prevent individual lawmakers from changing sides. The thing is, there are indeed some loopholes in the anti-hopping law that has been abused by politicians from both sides of the divide.

On one end of the political divide, the ruling party has exploited the issue of allocations as a chip in negotiating with opposition lawmakers to entice them to support the government. And on the other side, lawmakers are forced to support the rival side while not quitting their party in the pretext of taking care of their constituents, thus escaping legal sanctions.

Such an unhealthy practice must not be encouraged. Umno Youth chairman Muhamad Akmal Saleh has urged PM Anwar to rethink this practice and uphold the parliamentary reform agenda.

The core spirit of Anwar’s Malaysia Madani concept has been equality and fairness, but to compete with PN, he has apparently sidetracked from this central conviction.

Anwar should emulate his predecessor Ismail Sabri Yaakob signing a transformation and political stability MoU with PH in 2021 in creating a fairer competition environment to ensure political stability.

Sure enough Bersatu is not going to do nothing about the latest development. The party’s supreme council has convened an emergency meeting Thursday night on the next course of action.

While it is legal for Bersatu reps to voice their support for Anwar without quitting their party, so can the PN coalition do the same to rope in MPs from the Unity Government. Anything can happen!

The political turmoil during the last few years has severely bogged down the country’s development, and many people have grown sick of such things.

As the Unity Government is about to step into its second year, its priority is to continue implementing reforms for the well-being of the rakyat in order to win their continued support, not to engage in such unnecessary political maneuvers.


Anwar Ibrahim
unity government


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