Friday, April 3, 2009


UMNO has once again unleash Ezam Md Noor to campaign for UMNO/ BN in the up-coming by-elections in Perak and Kedah. I am not quite sure whether he will be wanted in Batang Ai in Sarawak, because he is not known there. Furthermore, rural Sarawak is rather skeptical of outsiders and to win them, one has to speak and understand their language.

Wasn't Ezam the person who claimed to have boxes of incriminating documents of corrupt practices by UMNO/BN top leaders? And to be welcomed back by Pak Lah in a much publicised media frenzy into UMNO's fold, must have forced him to conveniently stash the boxes in some secret vaults, only to use it again when he is no longer wanted by UMNO. What a desperate guy this fellow is.

Ezam will once again adopt a campaign strategy that focuses on stale issues to incriminate Anwar Ibrahim. And if Ezam calls Anwar a liar, the former is no better. Ezam had failed to swing voters allegience to the BN in the Permatang Pauh and Kuala Trengganu by-elections by employing the same campaign strategy. And what assurance does he now have, that makes him think he can do better this time. He seems not to have understood that voters are sick of listening to his speeches that speaks of nothing else, except to bad mouth others.

And is UMNO at a loss of able and experience campaigners to challenge the opposition in the by-elections? Get the Oxford trained guy to campaign, and who knows he might be the winning formula for UMNO. Well, Norza is currently not holding any party post. Why don't he be used to campaign. The least is for people to get to know Norza better, and if he does well, people may forgive and forget all the troubles that he has been through, and UMNO may want to reward him.

The mood and desire of the voters has changed dramatically these days. An assurance of a real and positive change to their livelihood is what these rural voters wants, especially during this period of economic uncertainty. Bread and butter issue comes top of the list. Serious attention should also be given to assuring job security, and issues affecting health care, raising standards of rural education, combating crime and drug usage among youth, and ways of negating the ever rising cost of living that is affecting the rural folks, and many other social and economic issues.

What about Ali Rustam? They say he is a popular politician and would have been UMNO's Deputy President if he was allowed to contest in the recent party elections. His popularity could be a pulling factor during this campaigning.

Finally, UMNO/BN has the full force of the print and electronic media, and without Harakah and Suara Keadilan in circulation, the world of media reporting for the by-elections is entirely UMNO's. As was the case in past general elections and by-elections, TV3 seemed the most active propaganda machine, sometimes taking the entire day of 'election campaigning'. Were they successful in winning the voters allegiance in support of UMNO/BN, is something that most are not quite sure about. And if the past two by-election results were to be taken as a measure of success or failure, than TV3's campaigning efforts was certainly a total flop.

We are now beginning to hear promises of development being mentioned, should a particular candidate wins. What these developments are is quite hazy, and I would regard them as mere rhetorics. If resurfacing a village road, or constructing a new bus terminal, or building a new hyper market, or building a stadium are termed as development, then I would say that the candidates are talking rubbish. These issues does not in anyway contribute to improving the livelihood of the rural folks, but it will only enrich contractors who are cronies of politicians.

But if one were to say that they will introduce new agriculture technology, or build more clinics, or improve the water and electric supply into all areas, or create small industries to generate job opportunities, then these issues are likely to draw the attention of voters. Whether the projects will be implemented or not, will be left to the winner to resolve. This has always been the case in all elections. Lots of promises made before the election, but only to see it wither after the election.

Both the BN and PR have gone through two highly strung by-elections in the past few months. They should know what are the issues that attracts voters attention that can be translated into votes. Certainly Ezam's ways of campaigning, the way he did in the past two by-elections, will not be one that is likely to achieve any success...........and I think, UMNO knows this too well.

Posted at 9 pm on April 3, 2009


Ramachandran said...

Well, nothing has changed. Here's the equation: Conmen politicians + Strategic misinformation + Ignorant cash strapped voters = New candidate (not really the best candidate). And life goes on in Malaysia. We have short memory and we lack intelligence.

ArshadRaji said...

Dear Rama,

Thanks. Interesting equation.