Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Redeem yourself, Zaid tells PM

KUALA LUMPUR, May 18 — PKR’s Datuk Zaid Ibrahim has joined the DAP in accusing the Prime Minister of breaching the Election Offences Act during the Sibu campaign and challenged Datuk Seri Najib Razak to “redeem himself” by fulfilling his pledges.

“It was clearly an offence, what he did in Sibu. But now, he should give the money without hesitation to the people of Sibu — that is the least that he can do to redeem himself of his crimes. Otherwise, it is just shameful... there should not even be hesitation on his part,” Zaid told The Malaysian Insider this morning.

The former Umno minister cautioned Najib against continuing on this “rampage” to threaten the people with money, adding that Sibu was not only a glimpse into the likely results of the coming Sarawak state elections but also the next general election.

“It might not just happen in Sibu and then in Sarawak. What I think is that this might just happen to the whole country... that was why they were so desperate and they had to make sure that they won in the by-elections,” he said.

The Sibu by-election saw the Barisan Nasional’s first loss in its East Malaysian fortress when the DAP’s Wong Ho Leng won by a wafer-thin 398-vote majority against SUPP’s Robert Lau Hui Yew.

The upset win came despite heaps of election pledges piled on by Najib and BN.

The most significant pledge was made on the eve of polling day last week when Najib dangled a RM5 million pledge for flood mitigation in Rejang Park before the people.

“If Robert Lau becomes MP on Sunday, on Monday I will ask the cheque to be prepared. Do we have a deal or not? We do! You want the RM5 million, I want Robert Lau to win,” Najib had reportedly told the crowd.

His method was similar to what he had employed during the Hulu Selangor by-election last month when he promised Chinese voters in Rasa RM3 million to improve SRJK (C) Rasa.

When MIC’s P. Kamalanathan clinched the parliamentary seat during the polls on April 25, Najib immediately moved to fulfil his promise.

DAP MP Karpal Singh said yesterday that Najib had breached the Election Offences Act by inducing the people to vote for BN on the eve of the by-election and called on the commission to investigate.

“Our Prime Minister seems to be acting like a cowboy in the days of the Wild Wild West. His weapon is his pistol and he is willing to do just about anything because people fear him, because he is known as ‘fast draw’. When the people fear him, that’s when he becomes the hero,” said Zaid.

He said that Najib had used BN’s success in Hulu Selangor as his means to measure support in Sibu.

“He thought that he could recycle his tactics in Sibu. And so he went and promised RM18 million to Chinese schools, RM1.7 million to Christian churches and RM5 million for flood mitigation. He also showered cash on the longhouses of Sibu,” he said.

He chewed out Najib and his number two Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin for being “immoral” leaders who had failed to lead by example.

“We are not perfect human beings but at least we must show some ethical dimension to our conduct. We must have good principles and we must show respect to others.

“What do they consider the people as? Like chickens and eggs to be bought? Leaders are to lead by example and their purpose is not to give out money and promise projects,” he said.

Zaid pointed out that in other countries, Najib would have been prosecuted for his act of “flouncing money and power” as means to win the by-election.

“But in this country... nothing will be done. It is truly not easy for fair laws to be carried out in Malaysia. This is because our Attorney-General, our Chief Justice, our Inspector-General of Police, our Election Commission chief and our Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission chief are all the Prime Minister’s men.

“They have forgotten the rule of law and are now just working to take care of Najib,” he said.

The Malaysian Insider



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