AMIDST the sodomy allegation that has kept tongues wagging the past few days, little attention is paid to MCA youth chief Datuk Liow Teong Lai, who attributed the MCA's poor showing in the recent general election to Umno's arrogance and weakness.
Liow, the Health Minister, said the MCA wants to change and reinvent itself. The pending departure of Datuk Ong Ka Ting and Datuk Chan Kong Choy is the clearest indication that the MCA is serious about change.
Liow said reinventing the party to make it relevant to the changing political landscape has to be done swiftly and in earnest. UMNO and MIC should also take serious steps in changing the party"s mindset so that they can continue their struggle in the Barisan Nasional as the dominant coalition.
The fact that UMNO and MIC continue to be led by the same leaders show that the reinvention process may take longer, or not at all. There's also the fear that the party may not even make it to the next general election sometime in 2012.
Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi and Tan Sri S Samy Vellu have indicated publicly that they will seek re-election to their top posts in UMNO and MIC respectively. Any reinvention under the old guards are not likely going to happen in the near future.
Liow's statement should spur UMNO and MIC to look into their party hierarchy as soon as possible, lest they find themselves toothless and irrelevant. But the sodomy allegation and several police reports lodged in the last few days have overshadowed Liow's statement.
Attention is diverted to Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim and Raja Petra Kamaruddin, who separately gets maximum publicity in the newspapers and TV. Much energy and thought is directed to the issues concernng both of them. So much so that the country's top leaders are locked in trying to counter accusations of wag the dog and dirty politics.
With so much attention on these two, I wonder who's looking into our economic problems. The next few months will see more politicking especially with the party election among BN component parties just round the corner.
While waiting for this, Anwar has stolen the limelight and got himself into the international media network, thus giving himself continued visibility locally and abroad. His plan to be Prime Minister by mid-Sept could be on hold until everything is sorted out.