21 November 2007

Anwar urges Malaysia opposition to unite in poll

Based on an article from Reuters, Tue Nov 20, 2007 3:44pm IST

By Nopporn Wong-Anan

BANGKOK (Reuters) - Malaysia's de facto opposition leader, Anwar Ibrahim, called on the country's disparate opposition on Tuesday to forge a loose electoral pact ahead of a snap election he predicted would take place next month.

Opposition parties with different racial support bases could find common ground on economic and democratic reforms, rallying cries for a big anti-government protest earlier this month, Anwar told reporters at a business forum in neighbouring Thailand.

"This is a challenging task because the relations between the PAS and the DAP are not too good," Anwar said, referring to Islamic party PAS and Chinese-based Democratic Action Party.
But Anwar said PAS, DAP and his Parti Keadilan had the shared goals of free elections, an independent judiciary and review of economic policy when they took part in the Nov. 10 rally, which ended in a police crackdown and at least a dozen arrested.

"If we can agree on this minimum programme -- political, economic -- then we can move on. I am sure we can get one opposition versus one UMNO-ordering Barisan Nasional," he said of the coalition government that has ruled Malaysia since 1957.

The coalition, made up of 14 parties including Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi's UMNO, won a record number of seats in 2004 polls but analysts say it could be tough for the alliance to match that victory in the next election technically due in 2009.

On Monday Malaysia's electoral chief reignited speculation about an early election, saying the country would go to the polls before long. Abdullah is widely expected to dissolve parliament and call fresh polls by early next year.

Anwar said the most likely date for the elections would be December, but he did not expect a free and fair poll. "Just one week of campaign, I don't call it an election. I call it UMNO-controlled elections, no access to the media, not a general election," the former deputy prime minister said.


The not so good relations between PAS & DAP were not a secret anymore, and by rallying them to unite just before the coming general election might not be a good public relation for them either. Even when they are not the ruling party of the nation, they just couldn’t work things out between them. I just can’t imagine how these groups of people will rule our beloved country if any one of us allowing them to win the next general elections.

When we talk about free and fair election, isn’t PAS won Kelantan and Terengganu during 1999 election? Even after 2004 election, PAS still able to retain their place in Kelantan. If the election were meant to be unfair, there won’t be any opposition parties ruling a state government at all cause.

If anyone of us realize, since the election is just around the corner, the opposition are trying to inflamed and played out the emotional & racial sentiment of the Malaysian by sequences of politically influential incidents such as the Batu Buruk, VK Lingam’s video clips, Bar Council March in Putrajaya, Bersih - Fair Election March to National Palace and the latest which might took place during this weekend is the Hindu Rights Action Force (HINDRAF) mass in front of British High Commission in Kuala Lumpur.

Isn’t all of this is to obvious for us too notice that all of these is just another election motivated issue brought up by the opposition? Do we really want to have number of illegal rallies and mass throughout our weekends instead of spending some quality peaceful time with our families? There are proper channels for us to voice out our dissatisfaction towards the ruling government, which is practice your rights to vote. And definitely I won’t be risking the future of my country for the uncooperative Oppositions.

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