Umno split into several parties because of warlordism within the party, the differing political stances of its leaders and factional infighting within. WH Cheng writes.
Parti Pejuang Tanah Air, better known as Pejuang, had its formation officially announced by its founder Dr Mahathir Mohamad recently, that is on the same night their by-election candidate for Slim state constituency in Perak was revealed.
On the following day, Barisan Nasional secretary-general Annuar Musa of Umno jokingly spoke of the Pejuang party founded by Mahathir and his Bersatu breakaway group. Annuar called Pejuang with a new acronym “Papet”; he was referring to puppet because of the father-and-son nature of the Pejuang party leadership.
We would like to ask Annuar Musa: is it fun to laugh at others when your own parties also failed in their commitment to uplift the community you claimed to fight for all this while? The political party you are with now, Umno, has been in power for 61 years, but despite being the most powerful and dominant party in the then-BN, Umno had failed to bring up the socioeconomic status of the Malay community.
Many in the Malay community today are still in hardcore poverty, left behind and under-educated. Many of them did not have any access to any welfare or subsidy programmes made available out there.
Annuar should realise that it is because of Umno’s failure that BN was voted out in May 2018. He must also remember it was because of Umno that Malay politics today is split. He cannot blame others for splitting the Malays because there are too many Malay political parties out there.
Umno is one of the many Malay political parties who had failed the Malay community as a whole. While in power, Umno put up with corruption, abuse of power, and mismanagement of the nation’s public funds and economy, and turned Malaysia into a kleptocracy until Umno’s reign ended in 2018.
Umno split into a few more parties because of warlordism within the party, the differing political stances of its leaders and factional infighting within. It has been ongoing for decades.
So, Annuar Musa, if you still want to complain about why others are trying to split the Malays by having more Malay political parties, put yourself in front of the mirror on the wall and ask yourself. It was Umno who pushed away many good Malay leaders because of the lust of wealth and power of a certain inner circle in your party. Why are the Malay political parties increasing? Because all the existing ones also failed in their quests to be an ethnic champion.
All the splinter parties exist today because of Umno, and because of this, many leaders wanted to try their luck out there. But without Umno’s backbone, they failed; they are being allegedly paid or bought, and they become subservient again to Umno.
According to Umno, the Malays and Islam are still under threat, despite their position being enshrined in the constitution. So, as Umno and the others had failed the Malays and Islam continually, let others give it a try. Let Pejuang take on the role then.