Sunday, December 14, 2008


CHRISTMAS is just a few days away, and although Trengganu is predominantly a Muslim state, Santa Claus has found its way to the state. Surely there must be something that attracts Santa Claus to Trengganu, and what could that be?

Oh must be the by-election fever that have attracted politicians aka Santa Claus, to the Trengganu, dubbed as one of the poorest state in Peninsular Malaysia. Just like what we saw in previous by-elections......roads are being resurfaced right to the doorsteps of some homes, sawing machines and 'kain pelekat' be distributed readily to the village folks, cash handouts to the poor, and lots of promises that seemed good only prior to the by-elections, and a foregone case thereafter.

Just a few minutes ago, I watched the mid-day news on TV 1, and whom do I see. Of course the Minister for Rural Development and former Menteri Besar Selangor, Tan Sri Muhammad Muhammad Taib giving hampers to an aged Malay lady in some isolated village in Kuala Trengganu. It was also reported that his visit was to ensure that the hard core poor in the state gets government aid and support, but why now? I am not rejecting the goodwill and intent of the minister, but such goodwill should not just be prior to a by-election.

You bet, there will be many more Santa Claus coming to Trengganu over the next few days, some by jet planes and helicopters, while others in their Mercedes Benz, Toyota Camry and Proton Perdana. Of course, the party supporters and workers will be loaded in buses, paid for by the party. Surely, the hotel owners in Trengganu will be making brisk business over the next few days; much more than what they make during the Monsoon Cup.

Deputy Prime Minister, Dato Seri Najib has said that he is confident that BN/UMNO will secure a win in the upcoming by-elections in Kuala Trengganu. Didn't he said the same thing during the Permatang Pauh by-election, and in Kelantan during the March 8 General Elections? If I could recall, he said that he wants to 'merawat Kelantan' during the March 8 GE campaign, but what BN/UMNO got was the contrary. It would be better for BN/UMNO to learn the lessons of previous by-elections, rather than to be overly confident over the unknown. A win for BN/UMNO is assured if they take a more cautious approach, devoid of boastful talks and promises, and certainly one that will not anger the electorates.

Posted at 12.50 on Dec 14, 2008

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