Lawyer Haris Ibrahim has started a project to “get to know your MP better”. It is a concept we Malaysians are not familiar with; electing your representative based on not just who he is, but also more importantly, what he stands for and whether his stand gels with those he is representing. This should, in a utopian society, cut away the riff raff from bona fide possibles.
What gives me greater glee however, was the prospect of hearing the replies from the various elected representatives from the 10 Parliamentary constituencies selected.
I reproduce here the broad-based questions from Haris’ blog.
- We are becoming an increasingly divided nation on account of the racial and religious politics that dominates our national political landscape. Is the Barisan government perpetuating the ‘divide and rule’ politics for their own political end so that the stated object of a ‘Bangsa Malaysia’ remains a hollow slogan?
- A loss of public confidence in a judiciary seemingly weakened since the Salleh Abas sacking and the 1988 constitutional amendment. Is the recent call to review the Salleh Abas sacking as the starting point to restore the judiciary as the 3rd equal arm of government justified? Would the establishment of a Commission for the Appointment of the Judiciary begin the process to restore public confidence in the administration of justice?
- The lack of transparency in governmental management and the recent disclosures of the extent of corruption that afflicts our society. Is the call to set up the IPCMC not justified? Would it not better serve the interests of the people if the anti-corruption agency was made answerable to Parliament? Is not the Official Secrets Act being abused by the government to hide from the voters the level of corruption and inefficiency that has permeated throughout the Barisan admininstration?
- The failure on the part of the Barisan government to deliver on its pre-2004 election promise to allow greater space in civil society. Does this not mean that the ISA ought to at least be amended to allow for a ‘check and balance’? Does this not require for a repeal of the UUCA? Does this not mean that the restrictions on the print media must be lifted?
These questions, once posed, would invariably evoke some baffled looks and hostile comments from the sitting MPs. Imagine Tan Chai Ho of Bandar Tun Razak answering question 2. LOL!
Dr Tan Kee Kwong of Segambut would probably smile and say, “Kepong MP send you here ah?” It would be interesting to hear Shahrizat Jalil of Lembah Pantai answering Questions 3 and 4.
Ng Lip Yong of Batu might ask….”You from MCA ah?” Heheh!
Good luck Haris, but remember these few points.
- Urban folks do have tendency to vote Opposition.
- Questions you raised may not make a difference to the grassroots that is more concerned about his rice bowl.
- These questions all had to do with rights, the law, race, transparency, corruption. What about the livelihood of the common man, what about education, what about the economy? These things are closer to the voters’ hearts.
By the way, why is it that you have not chosen a single constituency that has an Opposition MP?