Though the feudal power structure has been crushed, the remnants still require detection to tell what is what anymore, or not. Rampant, however, the Malaysian thinking that leaders, old and new, are omniscient.
Most WhatsApp groups are rife with issues big and small pertaining to the old order, and messages end with the conviction Mahathir, or as they prefer “Tun” (I can never bring myself to saying it), solves all pronto.
Every suspect senior official listed is going to get it, from Mahathir.
Every former official trying to curry favour to get in the action, will get rejected by Mahathir.
Every business tycoon associated with the previous regime seeking to salvage his business need not worry about success through “ampu” (sucking up), Mahathir knows the dirty tricks, and won’t fall for any.
I’m not going to underscore his age, that’s nothing to do with it, but no politician of whatever age and experience can deal with everything at the level expected with such precision.
It’s a large country, and a long history of errors.
Even if he has brought the old band back together with a few established greenhorns, in the council of elders, it’s still daunting.
It is time for more Malaysians to come forward and do their bid post election.
I do want to distinguish between those who feel they’ve contributed by virtue of years in the wilderness with the old opposition and now seeking spots, versus those who have the potential to serve the country.
Those in the ranks who can compete, may be few, and I understand why Mahathir is drawing expertise from what he is familiar with, but the previously isolated parties of PKR-DAP-Amanah (the whole is from PAS) have to present their potential, to show they’ve got people too.
The election was not won by just Mahathir showing up at ceramah. Same goes to all leaders from Pakatan Harapan. They did have many talented people assisting the cause, and it is time for them to be propelled to the national stage to fulfil the country’s ambitions.
My fear is the emphasis would be on loyalty rather than capacity.
It’s not I seek to sideline the loyal, but balance is necessary.
Regarding the capable loyalists promote them eagerly, because they tick both boxes.
The passionate loyalists, however, those who have stuck by through thick and thin, recognise them and pass them the emeritus positions they richly deserve. Or just pass the names along. Since corporate Malaysia treated the “opposition” like lepers in the past, they may not be aware of who in Pakatan they can target as their future chairmen.
It’s entirely up to public listed companies to find chairmen they believe provide a better profile for the company. Pointing them in the right direction would not be out of place.
Hold the rakyat’s respect
At the national governing stage, still, it is important to discern the difference, because if “nice guys” are put in charge of things they can’t cope with all of Pakatan Harapan will bear the brunt of the rakyat.
But I understand the need to recognise the old faces, the old hands.
It’s a balancing act, as state earlier. But worry not for options.
There are so many positions to fill since this country is highly centralised.
The options extend beyond Cabinet positions. Each ministry’s contracted officials, the agencies/boards/authorities under the respective ministries and the government linked companies, just to mention a taste.
They are all “amanah” rakyat, and we must offer the country a great start moving forward.
Just find the balance.