Thursday, November 19, 2015

Dissent in UMNO Sepang

Ten UMNO branches in Sepang have demanded that Najib Razak resign as prime minister – according to a Sinar Harian Online report today. Dissent may be scattered and sporadic but it is slowly and steadily building up at the grassroots level.
Opposition Pakatan Harapan federal lawmakers failed to vote down Budget 2016 on Monday. The budget was passed with 128 ayes and 74 nays.
The likelihood of the opposition voting down the budget as a symbolic vote of no-confidence against Prime Minister Najib Razak had always been almost zilch due to their lack of numbers. A two-thirds majority was needed to vote down the budget, but there are only 88 non-BN members in the 222-seat Dewan Rakyat.
Pakatan Harapan command 72 MPs (although one amongst them, i.e. Gelang Patah MP Lim Kit Siang is currently serving a six-month suspension, and therefore, absent during the vote, as well as absentee, Kepong MP Tan Seng Giaw) while PAS (which are excluded from the coalition) have 14 MPs but they chose to abstain during voting or they were conveniently absent. Still, three of their lawmakers (Pokok Sena MP Mahfuz Omar, Kubang Kerian MP Ahmad Baihaki Atiqulah and Pasir Puteh MP Dr Nik Mazian Nik Mohamad) broke ranks to vote against the budget.
Even in defeat – there is a lesson to be learned. It is a slap in the face for PKR – hopefully, they will have realized that PAS cannot be relied upon to help them in their quest to take over Putrajaya. And you cannot trust the so-called BN rebels (you know, Muhyiddin, Shafie, Ku Li, et al) either.
Yesterday, I was in Section 15, Shah Alam to deliver my CC speech #8 titled “555” at the UMW Toastmasters Club meeting. Like the Tuesday meeting, it also started late – and attendance was just as poor. Only eight of us came to the meeting.


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