From deputy president Dr
Chandra Muzaffar downwards, the
electorate rejected Keadilan leaders.
It was the same with the DAP Dr Chen
Man Hin, Lim Kit Siang and Karpal Singh
The only opposition front beneficiary, as the local media had correctly predicted, was PAS. The Islamist party increased its representation at both parliamentary and
It captured oil-rich Terengganu and is certainly set to become financially
stronger, at least from oil
It is interesting to note that PAS no
longer describes the Kelantan and Terengganu governments as being headed by the
opposition front but by the party.
The point was made clear by PAS
spiritual leader Datuk Abdul Nik Aziz Nik Mat when he said that it was the DAP which wanted to forge an
alliance with PAS.
The truth always hurts and as the dust
of the elections settles down,
politicians have to come to terms with
The message from Malaysians is loud and
clear. The Malays, it would appear, are
unhappy with certain political
This can be seen from the voting pattern, particularly from the predominantly-Malay states. Clearly, the Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim issue worked to the advantage of the
From the countless PAS flags flying
across the nation, it can seen that the
party machinery was well-oiled this
time. They had campaigned for a
year, through daily ceramah and
sale of video and cassette tapes,
in trying to reach out to voters.
If PAS accused Barisan Nasional of lies, the Opposition was no better. A look at their websites would
show their level of politicking.
In the case of the DAP, its leaders
don't need a post-mortem to find out why they lost.
Either the DAP leaders had been badly
advised or they have lost touch with
people on the ground. Its pact with PAS
did not go down well with Chinese
The involvement of DAP leaders, particularly Karpal Singh, in the Anwar issue didn't deliver votes.
Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad remains highly regarded among Malaysians, regardless of race, for his tireless efforts in guiding Malaysia out of the Asian economic crisis and keeping the country
The general population appreciates what the Prime Minister has done because the people have been able to hold on to their jobs, their houses, their cars and their hopes.
Many in the DAP and Parti Rakyat Malaysia, however, did not understand these simple needs of Malaysians.
DAP leaders, in particular, will be more
unpopular if they continue blaming Chinese voters for rejecting them.
They should not scare the Chinese for the purported lack of secular voices among the opposition
How could the Chinese depend on the DAP
when it remained silent on numerous controversial statements made by PAS leaders such as Nik Aziz and deputy PAS president Abdul Hadi Awang?
If the Chinese voters had gone along
with the DAP and shunned Barisan
Nasional, the consequences would have been worse.
For the sake of its survival, the DAP
should re-assess its links with
In the case of Barisan, there is no
question that it has lost the trust of a
large section of supporters.
It must work doubly hard to win them
back. It can do so, for a start, by
having an impressive Cabinet
Fresh, talented leaders must be given a
chance to serve the people. More
importantly, they must be men and women
of integrity. There is no place for
leaders with even the slightest
suspicion of corruption.
As we enter the next millennium, Malaysians will certainly become more politically conscious and better
They will not tolerate any form of
mismanagement and abuse of power.
Leaders who think they can get away are
mistaken. The wake-up call has been
sounded by the electorate.
Leaders perceived to be arrogant, either in government or opposition, should
re-evaluate their approach.
In the next general election, there will
be more than 600,000 new voters most of whom are young, educated and demanding.
From the Barisan, they expect the
ruling coalition to understand their aspirations and hopes.
They want their voices to be heard. They
want a say in the running of the country
and Barisan leaders must engage them in
Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri
Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, who began meeting
student leaders before the elections, should
continue with his engagements.
The Government must pick the brains of
our academicians and let them contribute
to the well being of this country.
Bit by bit, we should not be afraid of
having more democratic space. Such fresh approaches will continue to strengthen Barisan.
For the opposition parties, they won't
get elected if they merely issue press
statements and neglect their
constituents as many DAP leaders found
out painfully. They must be able to deliver the goods to the electorate.
PAS must realise that if it continues with its brand of politics, the party will not be widely accepted.
No political party can form the federal
government if it only has the support of
one race. Malaysia is multi-racial and the support from people in Perlis to
Sarawak is needed.
For Keadilan, it must end its politics
of street demonstrations if it wants to
woo the support of non-Malays.
Now that the elections are over, a
certain degree of political fatigue has set in among Malaysians. Enough of
politicking. Once the federal and state
government lineups are finalised, we
should just get on with the real work of
running the country effectively.