BY SYED IBRAHIM SYED NOH
I have been closely following the recent United Kingdom (UK) general election developments. The change in the number of parliamentary seats between the two biggest parties, Conservative and Labour, has provided an opportunity for Pakatan Harapan (Harapan) to carry out political analysis to improve our strategy to get the best result for the coming 14th general election.
Firstly, policies and manifestoes play an important role for every party contesting in the election. Ideas expressed by Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour party leader, has gained public attention despite criticism from the mass media.
It is time that Harapan and all Malaysians support politics based on policy and reject any politics based on racial sentiments for personal gains, as Umno has been practicing over the years. Slapping, kicking, threatening, blackmailing and violence based on ethnic and religious sentiments must be rejected.
The citizens are increasingly fed up with politics based on racism and bigotry, on the contrary, they demand changes in policies that can rebuild the nation, relieve hardship and reform the country’s democracy.
Citizens are interested in measures that can really help them earn a living for themselves and their families, fair and evenly.
Through my general survey recently when I was involved in distributing Ramadan aid for poor families, I realised that most of them accept what they have. They are willing to be resourceful and self-reliant.
They accept and they are grateful with small contributions from the Social Welfare Department or Baitul Mal, but the fact remains, they are still trapped in the poverty cycle.
Why does this happen in the midst of the Government’s claim that Bantuan Rakyat 1Malaysia (BR1M) and the Goods and Service Tax (GST) are the savior for the country and its citizens?
That is because the Umno BN Government do not put priority and fairness in their right places. Umno BN’s policies are based on patronage policy.
By patronizing the citizens through BR1M or financial grants, they assume that they have managed to secure the support from the people and all citizens’s problems are solved.
Meanwhile, profiteering, money politics and corruption continue to become widespread, diminishing the nation’s revenue.
This increases debt and cut in many subsidies. At the same time, prices of goods continue to increase.
What’s worse is that GST has driven the country to record the highest inflation rate since the last 40 years. Most unfortunate for the citizens is that their salary increment do not commensurate the current economic burden and high cost of living.
Harapan is committed to focus on finding solutions to the root of the problem.
According to Rafizi Ramli, KEADILAN Vice President, through the Guide to Rebuild the Nation book produced by Invoke Centre for Policy Initiatives (I-CPI), the root cause of the daily economic problems are the policies that intentionally or unintentionally affect the cost of living to rise faster than wages.
He said, the biggest economic issues for the people are salary and cost.
It seems that the best thing to do now is to find an approach that combines policies and Federal Government’s improved practices to offset the urgent need to lower living cost and to increase wages and people’s income.
In the meantime, Harapan is also committed to reject all form of corruption and bad governance practices by Umno BN. The losses from these practices are among the reasons for the nation’s loss of income.
International media reports on scandals such as 1Malaysia Development Berhad (1MDB) and the latest, the Felda Global Ventures (FGV), must be highlighted and explained to all Malaysians.
It is related to the citizens due to the flawed Umno BN Government’s economic policy on 1MDB and Felda which have not only tarnished the country’s image but had also led the country and citizens to destruction.
Eradication of corruption, wastage and power abuse should be offered as the resolution.
While outlining its internal strategy, it is time that Harapan focuses on information and solution that can bring about changes to the country.
Secondly, the involvement of over 66 percent of young voters in the UK election this time has had a major impact on the election results.
The young voters are more prepared for change as they face various hardships due to the government’s policies in areas such as employment, taxation and higher education.
A fairer job opportunity and wages for all must be drafted.
On this rationale, Harapan is committed to call on the 3.8 million Malaysians to register for voting and to be brave to embrace change.
Each vote by Malaysians is most meaningful in toppling the Umno BN Government’s corrupt practices all these years.
The increase in the number of voters can make a lot of difference in the result and the fate of citizens.
Thirdly, volunteers are an essential aspect in winning an election.
The involvement of citizens openly in political campaigns should be viewed as an important action that has a huge impact in political influences.
It is only in this way, a political party can disseminate information to the public in spite of pressures from the mass media controlled by certain parties.
In Malaysia, the dirty electoral system, unfairness of mainstream media and the use of government machinery in political campaigns are stumbling blocks to Harapan’s effort to bring about changes.
It is only with the public’s voluntary involvement that Umno BN’s dirty tactics can be defeated.
Following that, Harapan is providing a platform for the public to jointly work together to depose Datuk Seri Najib Razak and Barisan Nasional and to set up a new progressive government that will bring changes towards a better country.
Come join us by registering as a member in any Pakatan Harapan’s component party: Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR), Democratic Action Party (DAP), Parti Amanah Negara (AMANAH) atau Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (BERSATU).
Participation as an INVOKE Malaysia volunteer is also welcomed to ensure that this election is more competitive and to win in favour of the people. Make the UK election as a lesson for victory for the people.
* Syed Ibrahim Syed Noh is the People’s Justice Party Head of Information
Lessons from UK election: Focus on policies, youths and volunteers
BY SYED IBRAHIM SYED NOH