Vote for Democracy – Aliran Monthly 33: 1 editor’s note

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Far from being discredited in the public eye, ‘DSAI’ has grown much closer to the common folk than when Mahathir made him a ‘martyr’ of sorts.

Aliran Monthly Cover

Khoo Boo Teik describes how Anwar, reformasi and tsunami have merged into one huge and inseparable spectre that haunts Umno on the cusp of GE13.

On our back cover, Yeo Yang Poh exhorts Malaysian to move forward and make a change to improve our nation while inside, Francis Loh assures Malaysians they have nothing to fear as it is the ordinary people who will see us through.

But much will depend on how the BN will fare in its ‘fixed deposit’ states; this will determine who will form the next government. Faisal S Hazis puts the spotlight on one of those states, Sarawak.

We carry several articles looking at some of the critical issues confronting voters. Charles Hector argues that electronic companies and the government must stop resisting the recognition of trade unions. Yogeswaran Subramaniam points out that the recognition and protection of Orang Asli customary land rights, which are important to Orang Asli, do not appear to be among the election pledges of political parties. Dave Anthony, meanwhile, laments that after 56 years of Independence, the plight of poor Indian Malaysians has changed very little.

The state of the education system and academia is also alarming, laments Rom Nain. Ragunath Kesavan for his part lists the challenges facing the judiciary, whose independence has eroded since the 1988 judicial crisis. One key way to deepen democracy and promote good governance would be through decentralisation, says Francis Loh, and we must vote for the coalition that will usher this in.

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