Can BN take back Selangor?
JULY 12 — The question above is one to consider objectively, and yes, we the people of Selangor will be questioning and prodding the politicians about their propaganda.
The state of Selangor, after all, is a very valuable state. It is the state with the largest population of both locals and migrants, at least until the Sabah RCI tells us otherwise. We are the state with the most number of cities. We are also the state with the highest income per capita in the entire federation.
The state also has the largest population of youths due to the concentration of tertiary education centres here both inter and intra state.
If we are to study the voting patterns in 2008, one of the major reasons for Pakatan Rakyat winning the state government was due to the fact that this state is well developed with better infrastructure in terms of access to alternative media. Alternative media being that which is available online.
And most of those who read online media as their main source of information and news are based mostly in the urban and suburban areas. If we were to analyse GE 2008, we would notice that the seats in the state assembly won by Barisan Nasional were in the rural areas.
This advantage for Pakatan has apparently been halved nowadays with the emergence of pro-government blogs and social media outlets.
In terms of lingua franca, most of the online news portals and alternative media outlets use English as their medium. In that sense, I do agree that GAPENA may want to look into asking Umno, at least, to tell their cybertroopers to stick to BM instead of their grammatically confusing English.
The cyberworld is full of grammar Nazis such as me. Good grammar is equally as important as your political selling points.
Studying the voting patterns of the Selangor population, we can detect that the swing towards PR in the urban areas was unanimous. Seats such as Kota Anggerik, which is predominantly Malay, as well as those in Subang, which is more balanced, all swung towards Pakatan.
At this point I wish to clarify statements by two former prime ministers, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi. While the upcoming election could be about “race”, it certainly won’t be so for the urban population since the last election showed no racial bias in these areas.
Now, with the idea set in place that the Barisan Nasional wants to retake Selangor, there are a few questions that they will have to answer.
For one, what is your state manifesto for this upcoming election?
This so-called manifesto was something promised since September 2011 but has yet to see the light of day.
Furthermore, is it true that Selangor must deal with the federal government, but to what end?
What benefits the Federal Territories may not be what benefits the state. The state is an independent entity that must have a symbiotic relationship with the federation. The state of Selangor is a sovereign state in a federation of many, but we would not appreciate being whored out like what is being done to east Malaysia. As such, what promises can the BN make that caters to the state that may not be beneficial for the federal government?
There is also a need to address the question of state policies. Would the policies brought forward by the current PR state government which benefits the people of Selangor still remain or will these be reversed?
Can the future BN state government guarantee a savings of RM1.8 billion a year and above?
Can they guarantee, similarly, the continued hosting of SELCAT hearings to address corruption within the public administration sector for the state?
Would you openly allow protests and local gatherings? To what end?
I’ve seen in Selangor protestors bearing cow heads, Khalid Samad’s portrait being stepped on, the state mosque being used for politics by NGOs linked to you, Barisan Nasional.
There are implementations by Pakatan which have brought a lot of benefit to the majority of people who reside in Selangor and I am pretty sure we are keen to maintain them or at least put them on the ballot for a referendum vote. And that’s the other thing. Would a Selangor state BN government work towards local council elections?
The state of Selangor is well placed to live up to its motto, promoting sincerity and diligence. Now it is clearly revealed that these two virtues were not taken seriously by the past BN state governments after SELCAT clearly highlighted how individuals serving state organisations and entities were abusing the state coffers. With this in mind and in view of the fiscal irresponsibility of the federal government run by the BN coalition, why should the people of Selangor want the same to happen to our state’s income?
Here’s the bottom line I would give to Selangor BN if they truly want to take back the state.
To win back Selangor, an urbanite savvy state, requires the ability to be both moderate and independent, catering for Selangor first and the federation second and ensuring that Selangor remains the prime example of a modern state that others want to be. To do this, the BN coalition must speak up against moves by the BN federal government which does harm to the state, one of which was the cutting of PTPTN funding which was quickly reversed.
How many Selangor BN leaders spoke up?
If you cannot even speak up for the youth of Selangor, what guarantee can you give to us, the people in the state, that you will not become yes-men?
You know what? Screw that. Show me your one-year delayed manifesto.
* The views expressed here are the personal opinion of the columnist.