A note about the Bersih movement — Joshua Rong
APRIL 30 — Bersih is about cleaning up the electoral process in order to disallow cheating during elections. It does not matter who is in government. In an ideal world, the same number of people would turn up for Bersih events even if PR was in power and still did not amend the electoral process.
However, we know that is probably not going to happen because a lot of the Bersih supporters are people who do not support BN. This is because of the many scandals that have plagued BN in the past and many stories that have been circulated about dirty electoral practices that would not prevail had the government done something.
The fact that none of the BN politicians support Bersih is where the confusion surfaces. It is almost an admission of guilt. Their reluctance to pave the way for cleaner elections just makes the opposition’s cause stronger. That is why so many people who are opposition supporters took part in the event and that is why some anti-government sentiments might have surfaced during the event.
In short, if you are for Bersih, you:
1) Want a cleaner electoral process so that there is no cheating by anyone.
2) Want a cleaner electoral process because you feel that BN has been cheating its way to power.
3) Are against how the government has handled the protest.
On the other hand, if you are totally neutral or a government supporter, you might not like the association of the event with opposition MPs.
The fact remains, however, that BN politicians could have easily joined Bersih in the call for clean elections. That in turn begs the question, why did they not support it? You might use the argument that Khairy made, that is, the EC needs to be given time or a second chance. But what if the elections happen before they do implement the changes? They have already been given so much time and yet so little has been done up until Bersih 2.0. This all again points to the reluctance and the lack of initiative by the EC in the 54 years of our nation’s history. Still, they might implement the changes in time or they might not, and that remains to be seen.
In short, if you are against Bersih, you:
1) Do not agree with how Bersih was carried out, i.e. you disagree with how the event turned out. Also, the association with the opposition suggests political biasness.
2) Think the EC should be given a second chance. (In this case, you might support Bersih 2 but not Bersih 3).
3) Simply do want the process to be dirty where politicians can cheat their way to power.
In the end, any rational person who supports the ideology of democracy, regardless of party, should still agree with the motive or aim behind Bersih i.e. the electoral process needs to be transparent and clean enough so that the citizens know that anyone who wins the elections does it fairly with the actual majority vote.
* This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of The Malaysian Insider.