Sunday, January 7, 2018

Pakatan Harapan’s new reform agenda

Salleh Said Keruak

Amongst the announcements made by Pakatan Harapan today are their 13-point major reforms that will be immediately implemented if they win the next general election due to be called over the next few months. Reading through the list of proposed reforms is like reading copies of earlier declarations that have been made over the last 20 years since 1998.

For example, the point about ‘reform parliament and make it an independent institution’ has been repeated again and again for over 20 years. Malaysia’s parliamentary system works like the British Westminster system where parliamentarians vote along party lines and not like the US Senate/Congress where they vote across party lines. So how can Pakatan deliver this promise when they will sack they own party members who, for example, vote in support of government Bills?

The ironical part of this whole thing is in the past this 13-point reform agenda was the reason the opposition gave as to why Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad must be ousted and replaced. We need to remove Mahathir, they said, so that these reforms can be implemented, and as long as Mahathir remains the Prime Minister, Malaysia will never see reforms. Today they tell us Mahathir is leading this agenda for reforms. And to make Mahathir their Prime Minister to help fight for Anwar Ibrahim’s release from jail, when Anwar was sent to jail in 1998 in the first place because of Mahathir, is a very confusing state of affairs.

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