UMNO IS DOOMED: Najib on 'suicide' mission, Mahathir STEPS IN

Written by  Nawawi Mohamad, Stan Lee, Malaysia Chronicle

The downfall of Prime Minister Najib Razak and his UMNO party is of their own making. This is the culminating effect of 55 years of misdeeds, abuse of power, cronyism, corruption, scandals, greed and racism.

It all began when none of the previous ministers refused to do the right thing, and that was - to fight corruption. Then they failed to strengthen UMNO with bright and honest people. But their biggest mistake was not being fair to all Malaysians regardless of skin color so much so that the non-Malays began to shift towards the Opposition.

The Malay votes also began deserting UMNO for the steadier and more honest PAS. In fact, the shift out of UMNO began in the late 1960s, with the pace increasing until today when the Malays are more or less split down the line between UMNO on one side and PAS and PKR on the other.

Chose to cheat rather than improve on weaknesses
Unfortunately, instead of working to improve the image and integrity of their party, UMNO leaders resorted to dubious means to win elections; they cheated. It worked and soon the sin became a habit deeply engrained in the UMNO mindset. Just look at how the top UMNO leadership reacted to the Bersih movement for clean polls. The horror and indignation that UMNO when being called to order was most revealing. UMNO was upset and reacted violently towards Bersih supporters at all 3 Bersih demonstrations because it felt it had the cardinal right to cheat!
Some of their more extreme modes of cheating included building military bases within the constituencies of the important UMNO leaders so as to secure easy votes. But by the 1980s, UMNO found it could no longer depend on the military bases or the civil service because there was already a surfeit of both and the bill for maintaining them was getting a bit too heavy to carry, much less further expand.

UMNO then started to lure immigrants to apply for Malaysian citizenship especially the Indonesians. But not all of the newly minted Malaysian citizens support UMNO as there are religious ones amongst them, and like in Indonesia, they prefer to support the Opposition. Therefore, now in the new millennium, UMNO has no choice but to give instant citizenship to the Bangladeshis, Pakistanis and Filipinos, complete with an oath-swearing-in ceremony in exchange for them promising to vote UMNO and its BN coalition.
Such efforts are obviously desperate attempts to stay in power, and the intensity of which is inversely proportional to UMNO's strength and integrity. The more cheating that UMNO commits, the worse is its image, strength and integrity.

Scandal after scandal
According to PAS deputy president Mat Sabu, when the RM7.3 billion Scorpene submarines scandal erupted, the common people were not able to grasp the issue. But later, when the RM250 million NFC debacle was in the news, they began to fully understand how the top UMNO leaders milked commission at the expense of the people. This made them open their minds and have serious second thoughts about UMNO-BN. As Sabu said, it is easier for the common folk to appreciate a cow rather than a submarine.

When the NFC debacle continued to unfold, it was obvious to the people that UMNO had become ridiculous when even 'cows' could buy condos. Even UMNO's deputy Wanita chief Kamilia Ibrahim could not stand it any longer. She put her foot down and demanded that Shahrizat be thrown out of the party if she did not on her own volition quit the Wanita chief post.

Indeed, the NFC debacle was among the key blows that cracked open the people’s minds and it remains there in their thoughts until now.

While the Scorpene scandal related directly to Najib, the NFC debacle implicated many other top UMNO leaders from Abdullah Badawi, Shahrizat Jalil, Muhyiddin Yassin, Khairy Jamaluddin and Najib too. Perhaps it is because he has been in the government for more than 30 years but Najib certainly seems to have a finger in most pies!

Apart from Najib, there were other UMNO leaders who were also scandalous. Khir Toyo was found guilty of corruption, Jamil Khir Baharom used 'zakat' or tithe money to pay for his lawyer fees, while Awang Adek admitted receiving money from a company for questionable reasons and Isa Samad had to be removed from the KFHB due to distrust about his honesty and integrity.

Groomed to doom
We know Najib has his own private and personal scandals, while his aggressive wife Rosmah Mansor is beyond his control which does not make things any better for him.

Najib was chastised for using public funds for his personal matters. He was accused of scheduling his overseas trips to coincide with his daughter’s engagement in Kazakhstan, his son's convocation in the US, family holidays in Milan and Australia so that he could bill as much of his personal expenses to the public.
Even the Prime Minister's Office was dragged in when news leaked to the alternative media that the cost of the reception for his daughter's engagement in Putrajaya was billed to his office when it was a personal event.
These incidents rubbed away at Najib's credibility but he only had himself to blame for his shameless misuse of public money. How can he expect the people to continue to respect him when he and his wife behave like 'free-loaders'?

Najib has given up and is now on a 'suicide' mission
As if things weren't gloomy enough for him, UMNO and BN, Najib then went on to meddle with the award of the Ampang LRT extension project to George Kent. Not only was this firm controlled by his crony, it was the highest bidder and technically disqualified. Yet it won, and Najib personally approved the award!

Shocking? Or is that Najib no longer cares - he just wants to grab as much money as he can before the 13th general election which must be held by June 2013 at the latest. Certainly, it does appear he is on a suicide mission - politically speaking that is - while UMNO is doomed thanks in no small part to his shenanigans.
Next, Najib was floored by two major Sabah defections - one of which was Lajim Ukin, an UMNO supreme council member no less! Again Najib has no one to blame but himself. He could have prevented Lajim from leaving UMNO by doing something to pacify him as far back as a year ago, but Najib did nothing at all.

Either the PM was sheer lazy, or he had already given up hope long ago. Perhaps Najib did smell inevitable defeat and this may be why he decided to improve his image rather than improve things in UMNO, BN and the country. That may well explain why he did little to stop Lajim Ukin and Upko deputy chairman Wilfred Bumburing leave BN.

Najib's vanity is also another factor contributing to his downfall. Already sensing this, Mahathir has shot out a warning. In a Bloomberg interview published a few days ago, former premier Mahathir Mohamad told Najib bluntly that if there were more defections, BN would lose the next general election. Hardly a pleasant reminder to receive in such a public way - much like getting a spanking from the headmaster!

Najib is not trying to damage control, he has LOST CONTROL
The recent arrest of Rafizi Ramli, the PKR Director of Strategy, cannot be described as an UMNO damage-control exercise by any means. It is more of another HUGE blunder and this is clear from the broad smile on Rafizi's face when he was charged. How stupid can they get, Rafizi must be thinking at that moment.

And Rafizi is right. The arrest was most inappropriate in timing as not only this is the blessed month of Ramadan, there are three other issues that have not been resolved that will destroy any claim to the moral high ground by Najib & Co.

One is the controversial George Kent Group being officially awarded with the Ampang LRT Extension project, the second is the Sabah BN resignations and the third, the lack of real progress in the court cases related to the RM250 million NFC debacle.

Additionally, the arrest seemed to have roused the whole of Malaysia into asking why shoot the whistle blower but not the wrong-doer? Rafizi had hit a hornet's nest but instead of trying to prevent the hornets from stinging everyone involved, Rafizi was nabbed. The hornets are allowed to continue stinging those involved and careless Najib is one of the targets.

Gone case and the return of Dr M
Najib is a gone case, and sadly for Malaysia and UMNO, there is no one left to take over except for Mahathir Mohamad.

Najib may be allowed to continue to be UMNO's figure-head but others will control him. Mahathir, the main puppet master, is pulling the strings and Najib is jerking up and down, left and right. Hence, the discordant and uncoordinated actions and lack of policies.

In the past 3 years since Najib took over as PM in April 2009, Malaysia has been on auto-pilot in all ways - administratively, socially and economically. But it can't fly any further without a real pilot at the helm and can crash any time from now.

The main aim is to give a few more blows on Najib hoping that Najib will surrender his will to the real master, whatever the outcome of the GE-13 may be. Who in UMNO can beat Najib if not Mahathir?
Najib's most dangerous enemies are now from within his own UMNO party, where he is the most vulnerable. All the wannabes are out to replace him. It is clear that Najib will just handover his prized list of 'winnable' candidates that he has guarded with his life to Mahathir and let Mahathir make the final decision. Firstly, Najib is just too indecisive to come to any conclusion and secondly, there is no way he could say 'NO' to the strong-willed Dr M.

But in his efforts to make Najib surrender, Mahathir inevitably delivers the final blow to UMNO Baru, the party he founded in the late 1980s after de-registering the original or real UMNO.

Mahathir too is not thinking as wisely as he should. He has either given up on mending the damage in UMNO or he forgets that the Opposition is in top form now - no longer like in the past during his tenure.
But known for being politically cold-blooded and ruthless, Mahathir in his endeavor to create a clear path for his son Mukhriz to be prime minister in the future may have no choice but to sacrifice UMNO. And this he is willing to do. He has done it before and he thinks that UMNO can still survive.

However, the price now could be much higher than in the 1980s, where he was able to marshal the full power of the government machinery to defeat a naive Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah and cling to the UMNO presidency.

Yes, due to 'inflation' Mahathir should look beyond another UMNO Baru-type of scuffle. He should seriously consider and plan for UMNO becoming the opposition and Najib the Opposition Leader and himself, the de-facto Opposition Leader, after GE-13.
Malaysia Chronicle

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