Is Najib for real?

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Is Najib for real? Or is all this talk of reform just a pre-election ploy?

Here’s something I wrote for Asia Times, together with another correspondent Simon Roughneen.

Najib punts on legal change
By Anil Netto and Simon Roughneen

PENANG and BANGKOK – Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak has thrown down the gauntlet to the country’s political opposition with a bold-sounding reform package aimed at winning back lost popular support ahead of general elections due by 2013. Analysts believe the reform vows signal a move towards early polls, with some speculating they could be called as early as the fourth quarter of this year.

The amendments, announced last night in a speech on the eve of Malaysia Day and Merdeka (independence) Day celebrations, will entail the replacement of tough security laws, such as the Internal Security Act (ISA) and Emergency Ordinance, which have historically been used and abused by authorities to squash public
dissent through provisions that allow for detention without trial.

Najib also promised to update a media code that requires publications to apply for permits every year, a regulation has created a culture of self-censorship among Malaysian journalists, and bring laws governing public assemblies in line with international norms. According to a press statement from Najib’s office, the proposed changes ”represent the biggest shake-up of the Malaysian system since independence from Britain in 1957.

Full article in Asia Times.

READ MORE:  New Malaysia not dead – but it needs a jumpstart
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tunglang
tunglang
20 Sep 2011 9.42pm

Empty your mind.
Be formless,
shapeless like water.
The Tao of Gung Fu

The principle behind it is be flexible (not dogmatic) yet ready to change to new environment or disruptive challenges.

Suarez
Suarez
21 Sep 2011 7.19am
Reply to  tunglang

ready to change to new environment ?

switch to slipperyclean air-con food ?

cheers

tunglang
tunglang
21 Sep 2011 10.16pm
Reply to  Suarez

That is tactical art of war. The flexibility to adopt new tactics or strategies to maneuver in battle formation.
Just like offensive or defensive moves for getting the upper hand. No surrender of STREET hawker food of Ori-maestros for Soul Garden or Kimmy Garish Sitcom, darling!
Who would want to sell his own soul for an expensive miniature plate of plastic food? It has to be more than that!

Eeeerrooohhh! (battle cry)

PETER LAI
PETER LAI
20 Sep 2011 7.38am

I agreed.
Watched with disgust last week.
During komunis scene the background music used was from classical chines orchestra. When switched to platun harimau scene, the background music became traditional malay music score.
RTM, stop the divide n rule policy on modern era TV !

nick
nick
19 Sep 2011 6.22pm

Q: Is najib for real?

A: Despite the Najib administration’s political reforms, a Bloomberg report said foreign funds may continue paring down local share stakes in an indication that the world economy will remain the government’s biggest headache ahead of an expected general election.

Bruce Li
Bruce Li
20 Sep 2011 10.39am
Reply to  nick

KLCI stock market not doing well now.
Likely to go below 1400 mark this week ?
Not good for Najib’s rumoured GGE13 on 11/11/11 !

nkkhoo
18 Sep 2011 10.20pm

Repost my comment from the The Economist.com online.

TE.com reporter may not aware that Najib is a Mr. U-Turn, any praise for Najib’s reforms is still too early.

A leopard never change its spots is my understanding on PM Najib, the Malaysian reforms are his political gimmicks to win Chinese voters.

I still remember how Dr. Mahathir condemned Malaysian Chinese as ungrateful communists after he won the election with strong supports from Chinese voters.

Let take that old incident as a bitter lesson for Malaysian Chinese. Don’t repeat the same mistake….

Erwin
Erwin
19 Sep 2011 2.01pm
Reply to  nkkhoo

RTM still depicts Chinese as evil komunis in its weekly ‘Platun Harimau’ show (Thur, 10pm RTM2). They stll want the malays to be trapped by the fear of komunis bogeyman?? Rais please stop this ancient out-dated tactics.

bigjoe
bigjoe
18 Sep 2011 8.51pm

The answer to the title of your article: NO. Period.

Erwin
Erwin
18 Sep 2011 12.42pm

PM is so desperate that he and his wife went up the Suarakami stage to reach out to the Gen X and Gen Y crowd. The concert is marred by the shouting of 1Malaysia slogan. Sad to see such event was politicised.

sharin malayland
sharin malayland
18 Sep 2011 2.27am

pakatan bungkus this time….bungkus like bak kut teh

moo_t
moo_t
17 Sep 2011 8.29pm

Wolf, wolf, wolf.

tunglang
tunglang
17 Sep 2011 7.21pm

Santa Claus comes but once a year.
But … ultra-Satan Claus who comes at opportune time will go all out even beyond Antarctica to proclaim high heaven promises and ‘wonder-miracle gifts’ in expected exchange for your money-cannot-buy conscience votes (which are worth more than any bank can pay in a voter’s lifetime. Sorry to offend those ultra-sensitive bank-door-lickers who shamelessly love to die for O-Blady banks here & elsewhere).
“Ho, Ho, Ho, Ho. Your Votes or your Misery (the next 4 years)”.
Bruce Lee: Shooosss! Go to O-Bladies to sponsor your Bangladeshi second-home-coming!

Rosie
Rosie
18 Sep 2011 4.32pm
Reply to  tunglang

Dedicate to Bruce Lee’s fans. The spirits live on even now ….

tunglang
tunglang
18 Sep 2011 8.38pm
Reply to  Rosie

There is this LED Kung Fu ad sell horizontal panel featuring Bruce Lee at the junction of Dato Kramat Road / Perak Road just opposite the Polis station. It says “Jangan Main Main” (Don’t Play,Play). Even with mixture of Bruce Lee look-alikes on the pillar ad panels, the media already done its job well.
At the bottom one can see diminutive streamers of sweaty Jacky Chan cartoon trying very hard to ‘up sell’. I would rather go for Wing Chun hard core, innovative disciple than Beijing operatic stuntman cum comedian.

Melissa
Melissa
18 Sep 2011 11.04pm
Reply to  tunglang

Dr Hew’s adopt Bruce Lee’s principles for his bestseller book launch last Sat at Pragin Mall.
Those who like Bruce can relate to that.
Jackie is a clown while Wu Chun (now showing in cinema) is selling his look – a betrayal to real kung fu !

Mao Shen
Mao Shen
19 Sep 2011 2.15pm
Reply to  Melissa

Dr. Hew applies Jeet Kune Do to great success in Sarawak by-election. Jeet Kune Do is just a name used, a boat to get one across, and once across it is to be discarded and not to be carried on one’s back. The easy way is the right way. Ah, how it coincides with FingerTec philosophical guidance, we make things easy. Be it political arena or commercial world, the environments are constantly and rapidly changing, reacting to the changes shouldn’t rely on some rigid methods, and it should be like water, move fluidly within some external constraints, more importantly, maintained… Read more »

wandererAUS
wandererAUS
17 Sep 2011 4.44pm

Perhaps, when the sun rises from the West and set in the East…then, you can start believing in UMNO PM. Meanwhile, just tickle yourself!

Gerakan K
Gerakan K
17 Sep 2011 3.43pm

We trust 1Malaysia PM Najib for better Malaysia !!!

Anti Gerakan
Anti Gerakan
17 Sep 2011 5.19pm
Reply to  Gerakan K

Gerakan K,

You can keep dreaming!!!!

Yang
Yang
17 Sep 2011 5.56pm
Reply to  Gerakan K

1 Malaysia but the Deputy PM says he is a Malay first and Malaysian 2nd. Do you call this 1 Malaysia. Its all a bluff. After the GE you will not only see the 6% by digi, you will also see the implementation of GST. 1 Malaysia but you see some getting less 5% for purchasing a house or you will continue to see that 30% will be reserved for some race in business or education. No wonder some wants to be a wannabe because he can get this special privileges.

Gerakan K
Gerakan K
17 Sep 2011 8.01pm
Reply to  Yang

Only words from 1Malaysia PM Najib counts. ISA and EO will be eliminated !!!

Yang
Yang
17 Sep 2011 11.25pm
Reply to  Gerakan K

Since when have Najib words counts. Its all a bluff. UMNO and his deputy only take his word for granted and how do we expect to believe him…

Erwin
Erwin
19 Sep 2011 1.57pm
Reply to  Gerakan K

Heard of Gerakan’s ‘ADA’ election tactic?

Advocate, Defend, Attack.

Sun Tzu must be shaking his head in heaven.

snow
snow
17 Sep 2011 3.12pm

I dont believe that man is sincere and he will either make a U-turn, get elected first and reneged on his promises or impose some other draconian laws. A lot of people can read him now and most do not trust him.

kiddokit
kiddokit
17 Sep 2011 4.07pm
Reply to  snow

I second that, Snow.

Najib has his back against the wall, in fact, the whole BN knows they are at their most vulnerable. This is just a knee-jerk reaction from them with all the good sound-bites and glitz but devoid of sincerity.

Vote out BN come what may!

kucing meldrum
kucing meldrum
19 Sep 2011 5.56pm
Reply to  kiddokit

Najib suddenly want to look cool to appeal to youngsters at the Suarakami concert.

Is it because he believe the young voters could swing the vote to his favour?

Young voters should not repeat the mistake made by their parents or grandparents in believing in BN. For the sake of the future, vote for CHANGE!