Isnin, 4 April 2011

Sarawak polls: Is BN afraid of Pakatan?

Written by Selena Tay, Malaysia Chronicle
Sarawak polls: Is BN afraid of Pakatan?21st March 2011 may go down in history as the Day of Infamy. On this date, not only was the Sarawak State Legislative Assembly dissolved but it was also the blue Monday that a sex video widely believed to have been manufactured by the Umno-BN cropped up and was shown in public to coincide with the coming Sarawak polls.
That BN has no more weapons against Pakatan Rakyat and thinks that the sex video can be used against Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim and his PKR party is obvious to many Malaysians.
Even the Merdeka Centre found 39 per cent of respondents in a survey were sure that Prime Minister Najib Razak and his Umno-BN coalition was behind the video that allegedly showed Anwar having sex with a female prostitute.
"This shows that BN leaders are afraid of Anwar, PKR and Pakatan Rakyat. This despite the big talk by them that Anwar is a small fry and a nobody," PAS vice president Mahfuz Omar told Malaysia Chronicle.

Smut to deflect attention from Taib and his family
Meanwhile, the BN psy-war continues unabated especially in Sarawak , where more gutter politicing can be expected in the weeks ahead until the April 16 polling date.
Although the mainstream papers have reported that the youth in Sarawak favour BN over Pakatan, reports from the ground by Pakatan campaigners indicate otherwise.
As for Sarawak's public enemy no. 1 - its chief minister Taib Mahmud - the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission has so far kept mum on reports lodged against his perceived corruption and that of his family.
This despite glaring evidence collated by his critics both locally and overseas that he has allegedly robbed, pillaged and plundered the wealth of the state.
The MACC controlled by the federal government is now under the spotlight and calls are growing for its commissioner Abu Kassim Mohamed to step down.
"This is gross double standards and reflects on the deterioration in Malaysia's institution due to the BN's corrupt ways," PKR vice president Tian Chua told Malaysia Chronicle.
"Because of Umno's insistence on abusing the police, the judiciary and the MACC, it is people like Taib who can roam free to do as they please without any public probe despite more than enough documentary evidence to warrant a full-scale investigation."
Anwar and Pakatan gaining ground
There have been many parallels drawn between the local situation with that in the Middle Eastern world, where despots such as Tunisia's Ben Ali and Egypt's Mubarak were recently dethroned.
Like the Umno elite, Taib has been described as a despot, whose time has come. Unsurprisingly, his administration is going all out to roil the Pakatan as it ramps up campaigning in the final lap to the ballot box.
In a recent ceramah in Padungan, Sarawak, PKR leader Anwar Ibrahim was for the umpteenth time interrupted by the police midway through a speech in a ceramah or political lecture.
"BN is seeing their grip on Sarawak being loosened and they want to continue to lie to the Sarawakians in order to stay in power. They are very afraid that Anwar's ceramah will open the eyes of the voters. If BN is that strong, why are they so afraid?" said Mahfuz, who is also the Pokok Sena MP.
Yet, Deputy Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin himself continues to try and run down the PKR acronym, saying Parti Keadilan Rakyat was actually Parti Kian Rapuh (party on the verge of crumbling) or Parti Keluar Ramai-ramai (party of mass exodus).
In Sarawak to help push Taib and the BN cause, Muhyiddin has shown the lead and the direction of his coalition's campaign.
The BN will 'crucify' and bad-mouth Anwar to the maximum in a bid to make Sarawakians think twice about voting for his Ubah Sekarang, Selamatkan Malaysia (Change Now, Save Malaysia) platform.

Even Chief Minister Taib Mahmud has picked up on this theme and is telling Sarawakians that "the Opposition is in disarray".
"They are afraid because Anwar and Pakatan are gaining ground," MP for Ampang Zuraida Kamaruddin told Malaysia Chronicle.
All ways and means to discredit PKR and Pakatan
PKR deputy president Azmin Ali, who is also Gombak MP, has announced he has evidence that the National Registration Department (Jabatan Pendaftaran Negara) is in league with the Election Commission in giving temporary identity cards to legal and illegal foreign workers to enable them to vote.
Azmin said it will be a tough uphill battle all the way because the national institutions were controlled by the BN, and had no qualms about subverting the process of democracy just to please the Umno elite.
"They seem to care more about their personal ambitions, comfort and luxuries rather than the good of the nation," Azmin told Malaysia Chronicle.
BN's move to throw as many obstacles - fair or foul - in Anwar's way has extended to Snap, one of Sarawak's oldest political parties that joined Pakatan last year.
Now, speculation is rife top Snap leaders have been persuaded by the BN to switch camps. The talk in town is that under the guise of unsatisfactory seat negotiations, Snap has been tasked to create the maximum bad publicity for PKR and Pakatan.
Already Snap has accused PKR of being greedy and PAS of being too parochial and Malay-centric.
Yet, Mahfuz told Malaysia Chronicle that PAS will be contesting in a Chinese-majority seat, Senangin, and plans to field a Chinese (who is also a non-Muslim) as its candidate.
"We have tried our best to reach out to Snap and they have been telling us they are still willing to come to terms. But that is in private discussions with us. In public, they have been condemning us left and right. I think it is no secret that Datuk Salehuddin Hashim (formerly a PKR member but now staunchly supportive of Umno) has been speaking to top Snap leaders," said Tian.
"We are ready for Snap to pull out and we expect only the least disruption to our plans to win Sarawak. I am sure Sarawakians will reject the Umno-BN's cheating ways."

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