11th September 2020
Media Statement on 11 September 2020,
Persatuan Patriot Kebangsaan (Patriot) (PPM-005-14-22052017)
Media Statement on 11 September 2020, at 10 AM, held at No 27, USJ 9/5P, 47620 Subang Jaya, Selangor.
1. We would like to thank all gathered here today - members from the media, NGO representatives, and Patriot members – for the launching of our sajak-video, OBOR AKINABALU.
2. Obor Akinabalu is a very critical and hard-hitting sajak directed at politicians and political parties that seem to put their own interest first and those of the people and country second. The sentiments expressed are not directed at anyone in particular, but as expressed in the bahasa ‘pepatah’, ‘Siapa yang makan cili dia yang terasanya pedas’. They reflect a bottled-up frustration of the people not just in Sabah, but all Malaysians. The underlying message is to call for all Malaysians to unite, love and respect each other – unity in diversity, mutual respect in our multi-racial, multi-religious and multi-cultural land of shared destiny.
3. Politicians have been accustomed to abuse the nature of our plural society with forked-tongues, divided the people further, sowed hatred and distrust, and even instigated violence just to secure their vote banks. Individual leaders aspired to climb the political ladder tried to raise racial issues and fan racial and religious sentiments. Politicians used cyber troopers and individuals to create trouble, and manufactured issues to divert public attention from their bad governance. The people have enough of such nonsense.
4. Our nation is now faced with a number of issues with increasing seriousness and concern, besides having to combat and contain the spread of coronavirus that has already caused so much economic turmoil. Yet, politicians are busy with their agenda for own political survival.
Corruption in this country has taken a new meaning, i.e. no longer a dirty word, no longer a dishonorable act, no longer shameful. If one is not caught, it is okay. Today, it has become a norm among the elites, political leaders from the top most down to division heads, and government officials. What can we do when the Chief Executive of the country and his Deputy are mired in corruption> Have they shown signs of remorse? They claimed innocence and preferred to go on trial hoping they would be set free. When convicted, these criminals had the audacity to move around freely with their supporters claiming that the trial was politically motivated. Some loyal supporters even kissed the hands of these convicted criminals and others still facing court charges for corruption. The loot, the criminally ill gotten gain, was even shared among their family members. Hasn’t the Income Tax Department been on the trail of these looters and their family members?
The amount involved is no longer in tens of thousands, but in hundreds of thousands and millions. Were we not told that political frogs were paid a hefty sum to jump over to a different party, as witnessed in Sabah recently? During the by-election in Slim recently, it was alleged that money was paid to those that had voted for a certain political party, provided they show evidence that they had voted for that political party. Political bribery must be stopped immediately, and the government of the day must have the political will to institute stringent laws to curb such briberies. Such is the state of our nation today. Malaysia is today is dubbed one of the most corrupt nation in the world.
6. UNRULY MPs
We wish to reiterate our utmost displeasure at the disgusting behaviour of some of our MPs during parliamentary debates. Their hooliganistic conduct showed they had not been schooled properly. How could they be referred to as Yang Berhormat when they did not show respect and decorum in the august house? Instead of being referred to as Yang Berhormat, these unruly MPs should be referred to as Yang Biadap. They should take a lesson from our southern neighbour to see how their MPs conduct themselves during parliamentary debates.
Our national debt has increased to RM1.2 trillion. Our Q2 GDP (year-on-year) has contracted 17.1% is shocking. This massive plunge has so far made Malaysia the worst performing economy in ASEAN. We are actually in recession and awaiting the Q3 report to officially confirm. Petronas Q2 result has just reported a RM 17 billion loss in revenue. That means a deprivation of our government’s much dependable funding for the rest of the year. Furthermore, our 2020 budget was based on the oil price of $62 a barrel. It is now below $40 a barrel. We are trapped in a situation of whether to have to borrow more and more and therefore pass the debt burden to future generations, or see our economic sink deeper into the abyss of world economic recession. Our politicians are still in their dreamland thinking our economy will recover by next year. Politicians from the ruling coalitions show themselves as incoherent, lackluster, and a lacking sense of urgency.
Our showpiece Education Blueprint 2015 to 2025 remains a showpiece. There is little or no political will seen to improve the education system. We are still indecisive and changeable whether to teach science and maths in English. The standard of English among our students in tertiary education is appalling. Plagiarism is common among students and lecturers. Students, including in Master and PhD programmes outsource their thesis writings paying a high fee. Such blatant plagiarism has metastasised and festered into academic decadence.
Water pollution and unscheduled supply cut causing hundreds of thousands households and businesses hardship has happened far too often. The latest is the Sungai Gong incident of oil and chemical spill. It is the responsibility of the government, at federal, state and municipality to ensure man-made environmental disasters do not happen. Once happened it is too late. Besides the culprit, punishment must be meted out to politicians and public servants who failed in their responsibilities to ensure our drinking water safe.
Since the change of government in March, there has been outright and unashamedly appointing of politicians to head GLCs and as board members. This is the culture of patronage in politics that the people loathe so much for decades. Patriot has issued five media statements regarding LTAT and Boustead Holdings that included cautioning the government against appointing politicians to the boards of Boustead Group. Only deft ears responded.
9. INSTITUTIONAL REFORMS
The people are disappointed, even despair, wondering if we will ever see real institutional reforms so that our nation can progress. Institutional reforms are a must to lay the foundation for good governance irrespective of which coalition comes to power.
10. SECURITY THREAT IN SABAH
The presence of hundred of thousands illegal immigrants in Sabah is a security threat. With Philippines continuously pressing the claim on Sabah, our National Security Council should be decisive and start to take preventive actions. For too long this issue of national security threat has been swept under the carpet.
11. There are many other concerns, but certainly not the least.
12. We would like to thank our Patriot member, Saroja Theavy for her beautifully written sajak that surely will inspire even our nation’s esteemed literary experts in awe. Saroja Theavy also wrote our two previous sajak, Kembalinya Pahlawan Silam and Semboyan Perpaduan. Obor Akinabalu is our Patriot’s bugle call for national unity, a Bangsa Malaysia. We call on the media corps and members of the public, together with us, be a bearer of this Obor.
BG Dato Mohamed Arshad Raji (Rtd)
President, Persatuan Patriot Kebangsaan