After almost two years of blatantly divisive and toxic politics, now seen to have dismally failed, the cornered prime minister has in a last ditch self-rescue bid reached out to offer what he likes to describe as a ‘Unity Government’ proposal.
The corrupt terms of this ‘Confidence and Supply Agreement’ (CSA) with which he hopes to buy support in order to survive the inevitable No Confidence Vote in his government will mean opposition and non-Malay MPs previously derided as second class and not fit to make decisions will be offered similar perks to the favoured (predominantly Malay) followers already bought to his side.
What he does NOT offer is any form of power sharing that might control the incontinent and suspicious spending habits of his administration.
Instead, opposition MPs are being offered a RM300,000 cash grant per year (well actually only half that since half the year has gone by) as PN MPs already are, so that they too will be able to “buy emergency food baskets” for their constituents affected by the vicious incompetence of PN’s handling of the Covid crisis. That’s the ‘big carrot’ after a year and a half during which the poor and needy in opposition constituencies have been left high and dry to suffer without such help.
Actually, PH and other opposition MPs along with NGOs neighbours and the population at large have rallied magnificently to provide food baskets where needed, despite the vile discrimination which Moo has now belatedly agreed to end.
However, this offer is cheap at the price and the practice by which MPs are made the intermediaries of such cash is corrupt and ought to be ended and not extended. Social security is the job of the state and all recipients ought to be treated according to need, not in order to subsidise the powers of feudal patronage of ruling party MPs.
Countless cases of corruption have emerged from this grubby system, with MPs’ favoured contractors clipping chunks off the value of provisions eventually reaching those who need them – the system should be cash to those who need it, not goods in kind through sticky handed intermediaries. However, no surprise that once again this prime minister has sought to drag politics down further and enmesh others in his corruption.
There are further goodies to embellish this kindly bribe. Mahiaddin promises to appoint more opposition MPs to Select Committees, thereby admitting the dirty practice of skewing these scrutinising bodies in favour of the government. There will be salaries of course to perform this role (that MPs in other countries all do for free as part and parcel of their service as paid representatives of the people) and the government/taxpayer will further fork out for each of them to have personal a ‘staff’ of hangers-on as well to perform their select committee roles! More patronage paid for by the state.
Then there is the offer of a nice fat bribe for the ‘Leader of the Opposition’. There is no governing role offered in this package, however this as yet unidentified person will be accorded the full salary and perks of a ‘Senior Minister’ in Moo’s minority government! Of course, being paid for nothing is what a whole class of such ‘Senior Ministers’ in PN already are, along with dozens of ‘political advisors’ who are also given the same grade and perks as ‘Senior Ministers’. The Leader of the Opposition, whoever that may be, is now being offered the same guided life-style, so how can he refuse?
There is a problem with this gracious sweetener, added to the penultimate paragraph of Moo’s grubby offering, since it conflicts with a claim he made at the beginning. At the start of his ten page pitch the illegitimate prime minister had laid out what he reckoned was his hand to his fellow “brothers and sisters” in Parliament, stating his trump card as he sees it, which is that there is no established Leader of the Opposition identified to take his place.
It means that Moo has now at last admitted what everybody knows in saying that he lacks a majority in parliament (he is sad at the ‘treachery’ of those who deserted him by the way, of which more later). However, he smugly jibes that no other leader is guaranteed to gain a majority either, despite others being far better placed than him to do so if appointed. This is the basis for his preferred ‘Unity Government’ compromise.
In which case, how will he identify the individual to receive the fat Senior Minister’s perks and salary as promised as the final tempting morsel in his proposal?
Mahiaddin has also, but far too late in the day, added some other gestures intended to be temptingly popular. For one, he will at last stop stalling and lying about not being able to implement the vote for young adults. He agrees to do what has been voted through Parliament after all.
Beyond that he wants to limit a prime minster to just two terms in office and also laughably offers to place a bill before Parliament to prevent party hopping by MPs!
This staggering admission of the unacceptability of his own treacherous behaviour in gaining office by tagging onto the coat tails of PH, only to betray his constituents and allies by hopping back to grab power together with a band of co-conspirators by joining forces with UMNO and PAS is really quite remarkable.
Yet he expects the MPs of the coalition he defected from to accept what he did, keep him in office together with the parties that were defeated in the election and merely to agree to ban such gross and lying political deception in future!
The truth, as all the opposition MPs now faced with this ‘unity offer’ know and the King himself so recently expressed, Mahiaddin is a liar and not to be trusted.
This grudging and far from generous offer to share the loot from the public purse is predicated on an extraordinary demand by this apparently delusional limpet that as part and parcel of this ‘CSA’ MPs should agree to guarantee him a whole extra year in office and to vote through a vast expansion of the already grossly inflated ’emergency’ budget to a staggering RM110 billion, which this prime minister plans to be allowed to spend as he likes, on excuse of Covid.
The waffling justification provided for why he needs such cash and how he plans to spend it ought to wave like red flags to all MPs. His main explanation is that he will use these billions to implement a ‘track and trace’ programme to tackle Covid. Two years on and with the disease now rampant in Malaysia (levels of incidence are believed to be three times the official figures) it is plainly far too late to go about setting up track and trace from scratch.
The horse has left the stable. It is far too late and a vast hidden population of persecuted illegal immigrants will remain as a vast pool of disease that PN has failed to recognise and tackle.
Indeed, everything’s too late and this PN leader cannot be trusted over a thing he says. The moment MPs vote him his money and his extra year in office the rest will fly out of the window, for what it was ever worth to begin with.
The same goes for all the assurances that despite PN’s dismal record so far everything will turn the corner soon… immediately after the Vote of Confidence is out of the way in fact. Jobs will return, claims Moo, Covid will disappear along with happy times. Malaysians must not mind the billions he borrowed which disappeared and which ordinary folks will be left with paying back.
All Mahiaddin has in fact done with his filthy suggestions is unbutton his trousers on a situation MPs already knew was there and completely incurable. There is unity against him and without him.