It is everything we have come to expect of an Umno general assembly: the shrill voices, the diversionary topics, the silence on critical issues facing the country, the play on race and religion to shore up support.
But what’s going on beneath the surface?
The late Philip Khoo’s brilliant and perceptive article, published by Aliran after the 2005 Umno Baru assembly, still has more than a ring of truth to it to this day. It is one of the most memorable articles I have read on Umno Baru politics and what drives it.
Let me reproduce an extract:
But, really, talk of bumiputera interests at the assembly was all eye-wash.
Why? Because only a very small proportion of people can hope to hold any large amount of shares in public listed companies in any market economy.
Malaysia is no exception. Here, information on the distribution of share ownership at the individual level is not easily available because of an obsession with size distribution by race. But when we say Malays own 19 per cent of the shares of public listed companies, we don’t mean all, or even most, Malays own those shares. Indeed, a majority of Malays don’t own any share, and the majority of those who hold shares own miniscule quantities.
In particular, pay close attention to the accompanying tables to his piece showing share and unit trust distribution. (The figures may be from 2000, but has there been any substantial change in percentages since then?)
Those tables should tell you a lot about what you would need to know about intra-ethnic wealth disparities in the country, often hidden by just a single overall Gini coefficient statistic.
So the assembly proceedings should be viewed in this context. And Najib’s decision to retain the Sedition Act appears aimed at entrenching Umno’s grip on power and appeasing some of the elites – who are casting a wary eye at an increasingly vocal public, struggling to cope with rising costs and household debt and now awakening to the inequality that has persisted for so long.
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Sedutan ucapan Wanita Umno Datuk Maznah Hamid di Perhimpunan Agung Umno: “Mengikut penemuan kajian Pemandu, sejak Program Transformasi Ekonomi (ETP) dilancarkan pada tahun 2010, walaupun Pendapatan Kasar Negara (GNI) semakin meningkat tetapi Pendapatan Isi Rumah MELAYU bumiputera semakin ketinggalan berbanding kaum-kaum lain. Jurang ekonomi semakin melebar dan sekiranya tidak dikawal, boleh menjurus kepada sentimen perkauman dan berkemungkinan berlakunya insiden serupa 13 Mei 1969.” “Sedarkah kita, dalam unjuran yang dikeluarkan oleh Jabatan Statistik Malaysia (DOSM), pada tahun 2020 nanti, pendapatan isi rumah bagi kaum Melayu hanya sebanyak RM7,600.00 sebulan, kaum Cina RM12,000.00 sebulan dan India RM10,400.00 sebulan. Nampak ke tuan-tuan bezanya… Read more »
Somehow the poor malays continue to support Umno despite its failure to uplift them economically. And those Umno folks can ironically and unashamedly use their failure to further their agenda and strengthen their position among the clueless community, resulting in the widening income gap in the malay community. TV3 and Utusan are really effective in reinterpreting failure into success to feed the sieged mentality?
This Maznah Hamid was not reprimanded for not telling truth and instigate the Malaysian …?
Why the Sedition Act was not applied in this case?
Mariam Mokhtar’s interpretation of ‘Keris’:
K: Kleptomania – fondness for stealing.
E: Embarrassment – that leaders do not act in the national interests, but only for self-preservation.
R: Regressive – Umno Baru is not progressive. Its members are rabid with racist and religious rhetoric.
I: Incompetent – Umno Baru leaders are incompetent, indolent and irrational.
S: Stupid – this word needs no explaining. Stupid sums up most Umno Baru leaders.
The same racist game is being played in “democratic” West. As the rich get more obscenely rich and more of the majority (e.g. whites) find themselves out in the cold open, they hear that foreigners are taking their jobs (It is proven otherwise), blacks are violent giants (though most whites have guns and few backs do), terrorists are hiding everywhere (to expand control over the people), etc. Here, we only see growth in uncontrolled immigration (a world record), exploitation, adulteration, organised crime (loan sharks, hit-men, narcotics, gambling, prostitution, corporate fraud, human traficking), hate propaganda, incompetence, dereliction of duty, waste, CBT,… Read more »
Please stop harping on this small (RM 250 million) case and mention the billion-RM cases.
Khairy J so worried about 3 young calibre Malay DAP candidates in Dyana Sofya Mohd Daud, Syefura Othman and Jamilah Rahim; and went for personal attack especially on the capabilities of Dyanna.
This shows how desperate Khairy must have been !
Taiwan’s Blue Ocean Strategy Kuomintang suffered heavy losses. So a party of near 100 years old can collapse what say BN of 57 years ? People of Taiwan fed up with low salaries and undemocratic control of Kuomingtan party so in Malaysia if BN no watch out very likely share same fate by now especially the venoms from the young voters !
Baling Wanita Umno chief Datuk Dr Mashitah Ibrahim riled up Umno Wanita delegates by alleging without any proof that the Chinese in the state burnt the Quran in a prayer ritual. However, Kedah Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir had revealed that police had found that the Quran was not torched but was torn by a mentally unsound man, who was currently held at the Sultanah Bahiyah Hospital’s psychiatric ward. Mashitah must immediately retracts her statement and apologise to the Chinese community. Perhaps Najib could exercise the Sedition Act on her for inciting racial hatred and ill will amongst the… Read more »
The mentally unsound man who torn the Quran is a malay.
Source of info?
What a big, big shame that while the world progresses, Malaysian politics is wallowing in degressive thoughts & actions (to stay in unproductive power) as if the whole wide world owns it a living & an excuse to practice in excess of never-ending special privileges. No thanks to that Mad Hatter doctor of racism, we are now spiralling down the abyss of irreparable disunity, mistrust & the perennial blame-game. When can we wake up as a nation, with some common sense & not stupidity of self-interest & greed for money + power that doesn’t serve the people, who have every… Read more »
The failure of BN component parties to condemn racially charged speeches by delegates at the recent Umno general assembly will cost them votes from their respective communities, former de facto law minister Datuk Zaid Ibrahim said. The ex-Umno man said in his latest blog posting that leaders of the component parties had become “filled with such fear” that they did not dare muster even a mild protest against the speeches. He accused the parties’ leaders of being more concerned about their positions in the Cabinet and their parties.
Noticed that 1Malaysia logo is missing at the backdrop of main stage of the Umno assembky, but there are 2 prominent 1Melayu logos to represent Melayu Bersatu.
So Gerakan is still living up to the false hope of 1Malaysia that Najib has abandoned?
“We shouldn’t shout ‘1 Malaysia’ anymore; what for? We should now shout ‘1 Melayu’ slogan,” Datuk Musa Sheikh Fadzir, Penang Umno delegate told the 64th Umno annual general assembly.
Reported in mainstream media Teraju (one of many gomen vehicles to help bumiputras) have been allocated RM46.5 million the last 3.5 years. The rural UMNO delegates that continue to complaint about no money/capital for them to start businesses should now engage a good lawyer to audit where those money being spent whether only priviledged fews have swallowed up most via various hideous schemes !
MARA, Teraju, Tekun, ASB etc are all examples of failure of NEP, else why those Umno folks still complaining about other races?
No wonder young Malays are now deserting Umno. They are simply fed up that Umno cronies get (most of) the benefits eg. The RM250 million NFC condo Lembu case!
The problem with Umno is not admiting its own deficiencies and shortcomings, but choose to blame others primarily the Chinese out of envy. Umno should listen to Man In The Mirror by Michael Jackson!