Friday, March 28, 2008

We hear whispers from PWTC, Putrajaya

THE whispers are getting louder at PWTC, the UMNO headquarters. In fact, some of the whispers emanating from the top floors can be heard far away, and they don't sound so good, and much less upbeat.

The whispers are also heard from Putrajaya, the national administraive capital of the nation. The mood has not been very cheerful in the last few weeks, which prompted some so-called political pundits to forecast more dark days ahead.

Last Thursday, the whispers turned to groans as news filtered out that the party's Supreme Council had endorsed Kijal assemblyman Datuk Ahmad Said as the Terengganu Menteri Besar. The council also agreed not to pursue the nomination of Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh for the post.

Party president Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi announced this to a packed Press Conference after a long meeting held behind closed doors. Ahmad was the pick of the Terengganu Regency Advisory Council and while Idris was the Prime Minister's choice.

This should end the tussle between the Executive and the Palace for the choice of MB. Ahmad's swearing in should be done soon, a ceremony that will further test the resolve of 22 Umno assemblyman who had earlier publicly declared their rejection of the chosen one.

Before Thursday, the Prime Minister had stood his ground and insisted that he would push for Idris' second term as MB. This had given Idris and the 22 assemblymen who had given a written memorandum to the Terengganu Palace continued hope that their man would be the state CEO.

But Pak Lah's audience on Wednesday with the Yang DiPertuan Agong, who is also the Sultan of Terengganu, changed all that. Whispers coming out from the royal encounter indicated bad news for Idris and those on his side. And Pak Lah's news conference confirmed the whispers.

This was the second retreat (some of his detractors used the word defeat) for the Prime Minister. Less than two weeks ago, the Prime Minister had to backtrack from his earlier proclamation that Datuk Seri Shahidan Kassim would be made MB of Perlis. Instead, the Palace chose Datuk Mohd Isa Sabu, thus ending another impasse which played itself out as yet another political sandiwara after the general elections.

But now fresh whispers are heard. The grapevine is full of rumours about the possibility of at least a couple of Cabinet ministers from Sabah quiting their post. Why they would want to do so is anybody's guess, but the whispers talk about unhappiness and grievances.

The whispers gained credibility when Tawau MP Datuk Ghafur Salleh tendered his resignation as deputy minister just eight days after he took his oath of office. The official reason was said to be personal but everyone knows that Sabah Umno is less than happy with seat allocation in the federal cabinet.

Sabah, mind you, brought the biggest haul of parliamentary seats in the March 8 election. And state leaders said more Sabah MPs should be promoted to the Cabinet. Just after Pak Lah announced his Cabinet about 10 days ago, the Kimanas MP from Sabah, Datuk Anifah Aman, snubbed the PM by rejecting his offer.

All these dramas do not augur well for the Prime Minister and the Barisan National. In recent days, these episodes have been the butt of jokes making their rounds via text messages and e mails. These are not laughing matters, I tell you. These are national issues never before seen, at least not in the proportion that we are now witnessing.

That the whispers will get louder is a given, to borrow a golf term. That the Executive is forced to 'concede' to the Palace in the issue pertaining to the appointment of the MBs of Perlis and Terengganu is a subject that has caused sleepless nights to the main cast.

There are big questions which play in the minds of MPs and State Assemblymen like Idris. When push came to shove, Idris was left to dry without much of a defence from his boss. After such open display of steadfastness, the executive had to back down, leaving a lot of unanswered questions in its wake.

It is now quite obvious that Ahmad's appointment is a fait accompli, similar to that of Isa Sabu in Perlis. Lest some of you think that this is a game of one upmanship, this is certainly not the case.

What the whole nation witnessed was a gross mishandling of engagements which, in the past, had taken place smoothly and with the minimum of fuss. Almost none in fact.

I'm not sure whether we have seen the last of these episodes. In private discussions, the Umno hierachy speak critically of the PM's handling of the episodes. I anticipate a lot more whispers in the coming weeks, and I dare not speculate what they will be this time.

5 comments:

steady eddie said...

Dear Datuk,during the 12th GE, there were hordes of people at the lobby of Wisma Bernama, and one chap in particular,who was about to be interviewed by BRTV, he looked rather dejected and scorned and said to me "Bro its not good", I quipped back,with a quick retort..."it has not been really good for some time".The writing has been on the wall for sometime.It goes without saying that it was a night out in the "survivor" series where the council had voted out the player concerned.Call it strategy or otherwise, this "shock sendiri" syndrome has always been in our midst, call it some flamboyant government function or otherwise, funds are lavishly spent solely for the sake of executing a project with no forebearance on rationale, rhyme or measurement of the results of the campaign.Yesterday it was widely reported that some small fry was jailed for corruption involved in the supply of T-shirts for a forum.But what remains to be asked is what about the lads that sit in the corridors of power who dominate tender process.What about gun slingers who are given a huge chunk of the advertising spend.What is their credibility in the market.I think it is the opportune time to analyse participating companies and their background.Call it transparency,in the outdoor sector I think its an opportune time that some of the contracts should be reviewed and this monopolistic approach wielding the swords of political clout should be apprehended profusely, before genuine players are bull dozed.

The same can and could be said about the lads in power, they were so caught up in arrogant displays of power dominanted demonstrations that they failed to take heed of the challenges faced by the man or woman in the street.Everything was a pr ( publicity relations) exercize in vain, instead of exercizing Pr ( pujuk rayu ) in a humane way.A magnitude of obscene amounts were spent on media channels aligned to them,as one media strategist aptly put it,"the 12th GE was fought and won on the battlegrounds of digital technology".But unfortunately,they were more keen in displaying their might and superiority by hogging on their own outs including all the outdoor space as it was part of their outfit.

If I am to assume correctly there is certainly a dearth of truth in it.

The sense of denial and blind loyalty still lingers on.Whilst many are still licking their wounds in despair ( the worst scenario of a party bigwig as witnesseth and divulged is of a former YB who was seen(in shorts, and singlet, hair very untidily uncombed and unshaven since the the morning of the 9th of March) after the aftermath of the political tsunami, who is no longer the flavour of the month with his party leadership.(perhaps he is in need pychological counselling and therapy)

But,there are equally just as many out there from the ruins who have not learnt a lesson,one's who continue to flex their muscles and are trying to ride on their connections with the powers that be. One business owner confided that he was being harrassed by politically connected players who are demonizing his business interests; one which he won fair and squre now they are planning to have his contract terminated."Going for redress through the legal channels will take time", he said in disgust.

Well,there is a saying that goes..what goes around comes around...BERTAUBATLAH KAMU SEBELUM TSUNAMI MELANDA DI TEMPAT YANG SAMA....kali ini tiada maaf bagi mu....

Anonymous said...

Sir

Contrary to what many say, I am convinced that the PM is a fair person.

That does not mean he is strong and capable - as what many want him to be when he is PM.

Just see how he has 'on the quiet' been firm and respectful of the law and voice of the people, instead of encouraging his boys to 'poach' ruling party legistlators in the states and Parliament from switching over.

This goes back to the by-election in Kelantan where after that PAS held on to the government with just 1 seat majority.

Now the same in Perak and Selangor.

Had it been the days when the TUN and DSAI were holding the No 1 & 2 posts respectively, by now the many various investigating agencies would have made their rounds - knocking the doors of the 'weak' ones in BR who won. All it takes is to bring to their attention some flimsy offences and lo behold - some of the BR folks would have crossed over to form a BN government.

Was that not the way PBS was brought to its knees and UMNO took over in Sabah?

Can u tell me if the current PM has ever condoned such attempts in Kelantan before the 12th GE and even after that in Selangor and Perak?

And by the way, can anyone point out a truly 'saint' of a person who has been our PM before?

If we want to continue 'whacking' the present PM for all other reasons, its fine...but on this 'fairplay' approach by the PM - lets give credit.

Yes, we had the EC coming up with all stunts to make it difficult for BR their rightful 'wins' (as many are whining till now) and the feeling that 4th floor guys are calling the shots...but the PM has been very firm in ensuring the people's verdicts are not altered by 'frogs'.

In fact, the BR partners should have more engagements with the PM, with the first one to thank him for his assertiveness to prevent the resurfacing of 'frogs' during his tenure as PM.

And even in dealing with royalties, as one blogger mentioned elsewhere, dont you think it could be another subtle way for the PM to get rid of folks who are doing more harm to the rakyat - by allowing the royalties to take the first step?

That would make it easier for the PM to make some 'political' statements and then get his boys in the party to understand what can happen if they do not have the welfare of the rakyat in their minds and souls.

Of course, along the way, such 'political' statements create the excitement for the public and bloggers - but when it means serious business in giving respect to the rakyat who the actual bosses of the politicians, the PM never interfers.

At the end of the day, I am pround that the PM is not 'power' crazy and if it means he has to be defeated in UMNO to be sent home packing, so be it.

I can vouch for the fact that he will be having amore peaceful life than those who are 'scrambling' to vote him out.

Anonymous said...

They don't whisper. They speak louder now. No one is in power. All Umno leaders are powerless. People don't listen to them anymore. Now they cannot amend any law as they wish because they are not holding 2/3 majority seats in Parlimen. Cakap banyak ajak jumpa kat simpang je.

what we want said...

Dear Anon 12.33

I wonder what you have been reading but no one has ever said that he is not fair but he is only fair politically, that is to say he doesn't poach and force others to join BN
but that is now why we are disgusted with him, why we hate him,
he is weak
he is indecisive,
he gives too mcuh face to his family,
son in-law
and daughter in-law's brother
he does nto lead, a leader leads, if does not , if he does not want then he better step down.

while we are at it, you had better want to be a leader if you are in the office, you have to want the power, if that means they are power crazy, then so be it

that is why we have democracy to control and rein in power

I really don't give two hoots if he is a nice guy....

steady eddie said...

Rakan Rakan seperjuangan yang di hormati,( Dear Respected Friends )

Its not about being nice..I agree with What Is Being Said. Many a basketful of linen that is soiled from the night before will be brought out to dry, for all to see and...its like the fiddler who fiddled whilst the city was in ruins...or rather likened to the scenario of the emperor that wore no clothes.

I think the public is not taking the piss out of the situation, but rather articulating and gesticulating in utter disgust, about the arrogant manner in which things were handled.The handlers were not carrying out their job in perspective rather in disdain.

Insults will be continue to be catapulted as long as there is no resolve.Just look at the slap on the face by the Royal household,they are upset when their subjects are gruesomely subjected to unnecessary hardship.They know too well what is required and that the subjects are very loyal citizens.What they don't need is to be pushed beyond the means of civility and decorum..YBs please remember that you are mainly a pawn in His Majesty's Government, toe the line accordingly or face the music. This is also a personal message for those who have been given a second opportunity, the last time around one of you insulted a Ruler by eloping with his daughter, this time around you are back, but just tread carefully as your lifeline is on a string and if you cause any untoward incidences then it will be curtains..if you are lucky then you will be spared otherwise it will be last rites...as in the case of one personality who abused his rights to the extent of taking away from the poor their livelyhood.

This is not a vendetta or vengence but rather a second shot to make good of what you have abused in the past...as Ahmad Said the new Trengganu MB said.."Let bygones be bygones.I trust that we can be together in fulfilling our responsibility to the people in any situation."..let this be the new dogma to represent the people..As is most Tsunamis...aftershocks are aplenty...HIDUP TUANKU !