BN kalah PRU 13? By Mohd Ariff Sabri Aziz Free Malaysia Today

 Malaysia, it appears is finally gripped with ‘a loosening of controls and inhibitions.’ And this is not good for Umno which chooses to remain archaic, clinging on to the old ways. Umno it seems thrives very well in a culture of subservience, inhibitions and in a controlled environment. In an undefined setting, Umno is lost. The seizure of power in Perak for example is generally viewed as having been made possible by the involvement of the Perak Sultan. Despite the court’s ruling, the people’s court regards Zambry Abd Kadir as a political usurper. He is an illegitimate and illegal MB. It follows then, that whatever policies that Zambry formulated from the time he assumed power are illegal. The monies appropriated and set aside from the consolidated fund and applied for a variety of purposes were also illegal. Just recently, the appointment of the Selangor state secretary was also seen as being made possible by the intervention and involvement of the Selangor Sultan. The two events resulted in a loosening of people’s inhibitions. People are becoming emboldened to question the proper role of the constitutional monarchy. Let us be clear as to what is happening here. No vote for Umno, BN People are pointing to the fact that ours is a constitutional monarchy. It’s not a call for the overthrow of the institution or a call for rebellion. It is suggestive of a larger desire by an increasing number of the population, to see that the proper rule of law and the sovereignty of the rule of law need to and should be observed. The majority of Malays who did not vote for Umno are now centered mostly in cities and towns. They are more mobile in their thinking and are less inhibitory in speech and actions. The younger generation of Malays in towns and cities hardly read newspapers. The younger generation surfs the internet and those who are about to enter voting age are openly critical. These are the people who will never vote for Umno and the Barisan Nasional. Writing on the Industrial Revolution of the 1860s, Arnold Toynbee in his lectures on the Industrial Revolution observed: “The success of Britain in pioneering industrial change and ushering in a new world history was not the result of mere mechanical inventiveness. The essential ingredient was a political culture which was receptive to change and improvement. Old working practices had to be abandoned, old rights had to be torn up, and the whole social and economic fabric of a country had to be loosened up if innovations were to take effect.” Umno doesn’t seem to have what it takes to manage the loosening of the social and cultural milieu. Nor does it seem to have the presence of mind, the verve so to speak, to manage the change. Since it doesn’t understand and lacked the tools to manage the new social milieu, it can lose in the next GE


Capture cyberspace to get back young electors’

Samuel Aubrey Borneo Posts

KUCHING: Barisan Nasional (BN) component parties must conquer cyberspace if they were to win back the support of the urban and young voters, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said yesterday.

STRONG SUPPORT: A cross section of the 6,000 people attending the SUPP Convention.

He said the BN components should by now realise that they were at present dealing with a different society because more and more Malaysians were now getting active in the cyberspace and shaped their opinions based on what they read in the blogs.

According to him, present records show that Malaysians have the highest number of people in Facebook, and they are among one of the highest users of Twitter in the world.

Malaysians’ active participation in cyberspace was also helped by the 100 per cent mobile phone penetration in the country, he pointed out.

“So, you’re dealing with a different society.

“Yes, we lost the cyber space war in the last election (in 2008), but we can’t lose it again. The question is, what are we doing about it?

“I’m doing my part. I have my own Facebook. I have more than half a million of friends and I hope to reach one million in the near future. When I launched ‘tanyanajib’ Twitter, it became the fifth most active Twitter in the world within a short period of time.

“It means that we can engage the young people … I believe the young people are not rejecting us, the young people are not anti-establishment.

“The young people want us to engage them and understand what they want us to do for them as the young people of this country,” he said at the opening of the Sarawak United People’s Party (SUPP) Convention here.

Najib, who is national BN chairman, said he supported any move by SUPP to form cyber units to win the support of the people, especially the more sophisticated urban community.

He pointed out that the urban people were not after politics of development, adding they were most interested in politics of quality of life as well as good governance and fair distribution of opportunities. He said he had witnessed for himself in Sibu parliamentary by-election last year that the announcement of allocations and projects alone could not win the support from the urban people.

“In the urban areas where SUPP is the party we rely on to get support from the urban community, there is a more complex society that is not relying on politics of development nor relying on politics of approving government allocation.

“As I witnessed myself in the Sibu parliamentary by-election in May last year, the announcement of a few million ringgit for Chinese schools during the by-election did not guarantee support from the Chinese community.

“Why? Because the mindset has changed. Therefore, you (BN parties) have to understand now what is it that the people want.

“It’s not what you think they want, but it’s what the people really want.

“Because what you want may not be what the people really want,” he said. Earlier, SUPP president Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Dr George Chan, who is a deputy chief minister, said the party was very eager to join in the cyber challenge.

“I hope all the component parties will enter the fray together. It used to be a gimmick. Now, it is the ‘in’ thing,” he said.

He said the BN would face new challenges from the young and middle-aged voters in the urban areas who not only wanted development and economic opportunities, but also fair play, transparency, efficiency and good governance.

“They will express their desires and unhappiness through the electronic media. Cyberspace will be the battle ground for future government. BN has lost the first battle in cyberspace in 2006, we must not and should not lose the second,” he said.

Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud, Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Alfed Jabu and leaders of other BN components were also present at the opening of SUPP Convention were.

More than 6,000 delegates from SUPP branches across the state attended the one-day convention which was held at Borneo Convention Centre Kuching (BCCK).