Saturday 1 September 2012

Three questions for Najib

The PM is known to avoid answering difficult questions.

There are three questions pertaining to the 13th general election which Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak must answer immediately.
These three questions are:

1. Will the movie ‘Tanda Putera’ be shown in the cinemas while the election campaign is going on?

2. Will the voter rolls be cleaned up before the election is held?

3. If Pakatan Rakyat were to win the 13th GE, will PM Najib hand over power graciously in a smooth transition of power?

“If the PM fails to answer the above three questions immediately, then his credibility and sincerity as a leader who strives for the good of the nation is seriously in doubt,” opined PAS strategist and Kuala Selangor MP, Dzulkefly Ahmad.

The PM is known to avoid answering difficult questions. No one knows the reason why.

The PM must give a reasonable and acceptable answer as to why ‘Tanda Putera’ is being screened during the election campaign period if it is to be screened during that particular period in question and he must state clearly the purpose of doing so.

Question No 2 in regards to the voter rolls has been asked many times. Still, the PM has turned a deaf ear to this said question. Is this question so very difficult to answer?

If the voter rolls have been cleaned up, then just say so. If not, then please state the reason why and when action will be taken to clean them up. There is no reason not to answer this question unless one has something to hide. Not answering the said question does indeed give rise to the suspicion that there is something highly irregular with the voter rolls.

“Winning the general election is one thing but by not answering the question pertaining to the voter rolls, then there will be a suspicion that the victory was achieved via dubious methods,” remarked Dzulkefly.

Then what can the citizens do? Call for international observers to be on duty before and during the polls is one.

And if that is disallowed, then it is highly suspicious. We should also play an active role by volunteering to keep our eyes and ears open to monitor the electoral process by joining electoral watchdog groups.

A smile and a wave

The PM is only concerned with sprucing up his image as a leader. A smile here and a wave there is all that matters instead of really providing answers to tough questions especially in regards to the voter rolls.

Each time this issue is raised, BN leaders will inevitably reply that the voter rolls are clean by saying “If not, then how can the opposition win five states in the previous general election?”

The BN leaders always give that same reply. Well, if the voter rolls are clean, the margin of BN’s victory would have been much narrower. BN can still win of course and this is due to the tricky delineation of electoral boundaries.

Therefore there are many questionable goings-on in the electoral process, not only in regards to phantom voters but also in regards to the constituency mapping.

As for Question No 3, it has been asked before earlier this year. Till today the PM has avoided answering this particular said question. Why? This is a very simple question. Just answer ‘yes’ or ‘no’.

The PM’s reluctance to answer the question pertaining to the smooth transition of power is most telling. Is this an ominous sign?

As we have just celebrated the 55th year of Independence, it is time to look forward to meeting the challenges facing the nation. With the advent of instant technology, no one can easily hide their misdeeds.

Thus we as citizens must demand that our leaders be forthright and honest. Double-talk and dodgy answers are unacceptable. No two-ways about it.

PM Najib owes the citizens, including the Pakatan lawmakers frank and straightforward answers. He must put aside partisan politics and be fair to all.

He has to strive to improve in all areas of administration as has often been proclaimed in the much-touted GTP (Government Transformation Programme) and the various NKRAs (National Key Result Areas).

Listening is not enough

As the polls will be called soon, PM Najib must come up with sound, logical, transparent and responsible answers fast in regards to the above 3 questions.

He must stop pussyfooting around and give a reply to the citizens especially as he has put out a big advertorial on the KTM commuter train and also at the KL train station proclaiming loudly and clearly that he is listening to our grouses.

But listening alone is not enough. It is true that he has taken steps to alleviate some of the rakyat’s hardship but his high office demands that he answers all our questions and not only a few selected ones. The question concerning the smooth transition of power is of ultimate importance as it involves the sovereignty of the nation.

“There is one aspect, though, wherein the PM has spoken plainly and clearly. And that is when he has made known his intention to defend Putrajaya at all costs,” added Dzulkefly.

Selena Tay is a FMT columnist

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