I had speculated in my earlier post 3 days ago, 3 possible scenarios panning out of the Ahmad "penumpang" Ismail controversy. While option (1) i.e., Pak Lah gets woken up from his slumber was a non-starter, I had honestly thought that option (3) i.e., a partial compromise "apology" by Datuk Ahmad Ismail will be issued, especially in the light that the Deputy Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Abdul Razak has already issued an apology on his behalf. In fact, I think the majority of readers who commented thought option (3) was a good bet.
But no, despite picking option (3), I actually still had too much faith in Pak Lah!
Instead of Pak Lah giving this recalcitrant Datuk Ahmad Ismail a figurative "tight slap", the exact reverse happened! Datuk Ahmad Ismail, backed by the entire Penang UMNO divisions, including that of Pak Lah's constituency, Kepala Batas, gave the hapless Prime Minister 3 proverbial "tight slaps" instead!
The first tight slap was to the Prime Minister and his Deputy, for apologising and seeking Datuk Ahmad Ismail apology without the latter's consent. "A tense-looking" Pak Lah, came out of a 2-hour meeting with Penang UMNO, changed his tune to say "Ahmad Ismail is not a racist", and concurred that the latter had been "misquoted" or "misinterpreted".
The second tight slap to Pak Lah was targetted at the reporting media, Sinchew Daily for having the courage to report what he said. In effect, he was arguing that Sinchew had no business to be at a UMNO ceramah which was targetting Malay audience and what's discussed at the ceramah was of no relevance to the Chinese community. Hence the vernacular press was guilty for highlighting his comments. It is a indirect call for continuation of the divide and rule policy so favoured by Barisan Nasional which took over from our colonial masters.
In fact, Penang UMNO opposition leader, Datuk Azhar Ibrahim asked for the Sinchew reporter involved to be "shot"(!)
"What was written may lead to a racial riot. If such a thing happens, he is the first person that should be shot," he said to loud cheers from Umno supporters who packed the meeting room at Menara Umno here.
Umm... isn't that a clear cut case of shooting the messenger? Using the same term of reference (which I oppose), should the person who raised the racist remarks in the first place, Ahmad "penumpang" Ismail be the one to be shot for inciting hatred "which may lead to a racial riot"?
Is this the type of UMNO wakil rakyat we have in this country? Or is he enjoying being in opposition so much that he's trying to let Pakatan Rakyat keep Penang for good? Is our Barisan Nasional and UMNO leadership in agreement with this Datuk Azhar's remarks? Silence means none other than consent in this case.
The third tight slap, Pak Lah received on behalf of Barisan Nasional component parties, MCA and Gerakan. With all the bravado displayed by these 2 parties leading up to an apology by the Deputy Prime Minister himself, Datuk Ahmad "penumpang" Ismail not only remained defiant, but upped the ante instead.
Ahmad also slammed Gerakan acting president Dr Koh Tsu Koon as a “great liar and opportunist”, and said Gerakan can always “get out from Barisan Nasional”.
UMNO is now beyond redemption. They have remained stuck in stone age and have refused, out of vested interest, to shift out of their coconut shell. The people of Malaysia have matured politically, most of whom, including Malays as demonstrated in the Permatang Pauh by-elections, have grown out of the racial politics framework. But the entire Penang state UMNO saw no need for change but came out fight for their extremist cause instead.
The question, I have then for Gerakan and MCA is, "what else are you waiting for?" Continue to back your best friends, by shamelessly giving the excuse that the above extremist views are just that of a few black sheep, and the national UMNO leadership do not share their views? This is not ONE man in UMNO. It is the entire UMNO state machinery in Penang, so far openly supported by UMNO Kelantan. Gerakan and MCA should also note that practically all of the other UMNO leaders have remained absolutely silent, which in effect means tacit support for these Penang leaders.
So are you all, Gerakan and MCA, going to stick around til the next elections to witness your inevitable demise? Gerakan has 2 seats while MCA has 15 left in the Parliament, can it be any worse?
The concept of Barisan Nasional has completely outlived its usefulness. While Gerakan and MCA has been DAP's political adversaries for decades, it is never too late to see the light and give Malaysia a fresh start by joining the Pakatan Rakyat federal government.
Make that change, leave the Dark Side and join the Jedi Knights. May the force be with you.