I woke up at 5.30am on 19 November, and it was raining cats and dogs outside.
The rain was pounding on the roof of my house with such a vengeance, and I could see the trees swaying and shuddering in the rain from out of my window.
I wondered what many would be thinking. Would they be cursing Ismail Sabri Yaakob for dissolving Parliament and forcing a general election during the monsoon season? Would this mean the turnout for voting would be severely dampened, as predicted by almost every political analyst out there?
I then recalled what my friend Zikri said when nomination day was set for 5 November – “Remember, remember, the 5th of November…” – in reference to the movie V for Vendetta.
I thought to myself it was time to settle our collective vendetta against those who stole our mandate in the 2018 general election.
The many reports on how the voting went throughout the day and the 73% voter turnout bear testimony to the determination of so many people to have a say in the future of our country. The sense of purpose was so palpable, especially in areas where voters queued for hours or waded through flood waters.
The election process progressed mostly calmly and peacefully, and that is something we must be proud of. Some complaints surfaced and shortcomings were evident during the voting process, especially with overseas postal ballots, and this definitely calls for a serious review and reform of the Election Commission and its functions.
- Sign up for Aliran's free daily email updates or weekly newsletters or both
- Make a one-off donation to Persatuan Aliran Kesedaran Negara, CIMB a/c 8004240948
- Make a regular pledge or periodic auto-donation to Aliran
- Become an Aliran member
Many of us were busy throughout last night, fiddling with our mobile phones, sending WhatsApp messages and checking all the media sources online and TV for the elections results as they rolled out slowly.
After a long night with many anxious moments, I believe I woke up to a refreshed Malaysia this morning. I am happy the election was held in a peaceful and proper manner, albeit with some tense moments.
I am glad many hardworking politicians of calibre and integrity were chosen or retained by the voters.
I am overjoyed many of the traitors who betrayed our mandate through the ‘Sheraton move’ were voted out.
I am relieved many of the political dinosaurs were rejected by the voters.
But are we in safe territory yet? As we wait anxiously for the power–brokering and strategising among the different political parties to cobble together a workable coalition with a strong majority, will we, the people, again become the ultimate losers?!
I believe most people voted for a clean, competent and accountable government that will be able to lift the country out of the doldrums. Is that what we will get tomorrow?
I am sure all of us want to have a prime minister and cabinet members that we can be proud of and have confidence in. Will that materialise?
Or will we see discredited politicians rejected by the voters coming in through the back door? Will we see a repeat of the last two years?
Will all the institutional reforms that we desperately need, be carried out quickly?
Or will the focus be on more religiosity of the Hadi Awang – Pas variety? This will have serious implications not just for Muslims in Malaysia but for non-Muslims as well.
I sincerely hope the newly cobbled coalition government will put the interests of the nation first and not their personal or party interests. Wishful thinking, you say?!
A popular quote from the movie V for Vendetta says: “People shouldn’t be afraid of their government. Governments should be afraid of their people.”
I am confident Malaysians will live up to that quote.