Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Anwar pushing self into a corner

ONE could just imagine the response from the Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim-led Black 505 crowd over the dismissal by Bangladesh of the claim that some 40,000 of its citizens were brought to vote in the polls just past -- nothing.

It is not that they were stumped by the dismissal by Bangladeshi High Commissioner Atiqur Rahman. It is just that they don't care. The truth hardly matters, especially if it does not serve their purpose.

They do not care, too, if they were to be described as xenophobic or racist, or to be long on tall tales and mighty short with the evidence.

I am eager to know if opposition leaders like Karpal Singh, Lim Guan Eng, Datuk Hadi Awang or Datin Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail really believe that 40,000 foreigners were brought in to vote for Barisan Nasional.

If they do not, these leaders should not be coy with the truth and should instead shout down such lies, just as they claim righteousness to be theirs.

Why are there no police reports lodged nor evidence produced? Were they just allegations ahead of polling? Just like the claims of a secret warehouse for pre-ticked ballot papers or suspicious blackouts at counting centres?

They were so outrageous that they must be true! But are not those who enjoy the "rewards" of lies and deceits by others, guilty of the same?

It does not matter, too, for Anwar and his supporters that his friend the former Indonesian vice-president Jusuf Kalla practically chastised him for trying to hee-haw his way out of a secret deal brokered by him between the aspiring and incumbent prime ministers.

And is it not really clear to them that the quick congratulations that came to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak from foreign leaders and governments -- who do so after getting reports on the elections from their missions here -- to be clear recognition of the electoral process and its results.

Actually, one can be hard pressed to find the logic in Anwar and his band of protesters' arguments.

(Incidentally, there is a relatively new group of people now gathering around him, compared with those of the reformasi years. Interestingly, a disproportionately higher number are Chinese who sat out then, perhaps bemused at the Malay-dominated movement.)

They claimed that the elections were filled with fraudulent practices, including cheating and complicity of the Election Commission with BN to deny Pakatan its victory, and Anwar, the premiership.

Yet, and this has been repeated a millionth time, they employ selective outrage -- only those seats and states not won by them are suspects of unholy acts. They said the elections were tainted but surprisingly did not call for a fresh one.

And in the classic example of changing one's story as one goes along, having failed to provide evidence for the existence of widespread and systemic cheating that would have affected the results of the elections, they are pinning their entire hope on the fact that the indelible ink did not work as advertised. Is that proof of cheating, complicity or conspiracy, or just a case of bad quality product that one can wash off the ink stain?

Personally, I think everyone whose reputation was besmirched, who have been maligned and vilified for public contempt and odium should seek legal redress not only to preserve their reputation, but also to preserve the institutions they represent.

Lastly, Anwar is calling for yet another rally for the blackshirts in more than a week. Yet, one could almost bet that despite his objections to all manners of the elections, he would be in Parliament soon after to be sworn in as the legally elected member of parliament for Pematang Pauh.

Are not their logic flawed, and their arguments self-serving? If Anwar is not careful, and if it not already so, he could be painting himself into a corner as far as credibility goes.



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