Zaid Tells How Pkr Umno And Dap Are Alike
PETALING JAYA: The time has come for political parties to acknowledge the serious systemic issues in the country and commit to making changes, says former politician Zaid Ibrahim.
Zaid said he found it amusing that people often stated that Umno and Barisan Nasional, which ruled the country for six decades, must change.
“It is as if they don’t have to. Change here means accepting fundamental changes to the system and the way the government is being run,” said Zaid, a former de facto law minister in the Abdullah Ahmad Badawi government.
A political journeyman of sorts, having been a member of Umno, PKR, and DAP, Zaid said there were similarities between the three major parties.
“All of them are the same in some fundamental sense. They are more interested in playing the game of achieving power, and having won, will try to stay in power, even abandoning key reforms for the good of the country,” he said.
Umno ‘lost’ but far from irrelevant
Zaid also spoke about Umno, his party of 23 years until he was expelled for his contrarian opinions.
Although Umno had lost its way, the party was far from irrelevant, he said. Political stability would remain elusive as long as Umno as the country’s largest Malay party, did not assume its “proper role”
Even though it had failed miserably to unite Malaysians or curb corruption in high places, the reality was that Umno has some good leaders within their ranks.
“Just because a few leaders are facing judges does not mean the whole party is tainted and just because the leaders from other parties escaped prosecution does not mean they are clean.”
He said Umno’s 1965 book titled “Revolusi Mental” was an eye-opener for many young Malays like himself.
“The book called on the Malays to be guided by rational thoughts and science, and to learn the benefits of a multiracial society. Modern education was emphasised.
“Unfortunately, Umno, a party that was meant to be the great unifier became the divider and lost its way,” he said, adding however the party’s role in developing the country over the years cannot be denied.
Zaid said although it was unfair that he was sacked for his contrarian views, he was glad the party was now very tolerant of some leaders who openly defy and challenge the party leadership.
On whether he was eyeing a political comeback, Zaid said it was unlikely, although he remained interested in politics and national issues. “Politics has been costly to me and my family, but I will stay close to the people and I will continue to speak out and write about what’s good for them.” - FMT
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