It’s hard to be gracious towards Barisan Nasional

I never thought BN would actually be ousted from power in Malaysia. After 61 years since independence, you can’t blame me for already having it ingrained in me that BN will forever be the government.

If anything, I thought the margin of BN’s win was what would determine if it was a victory or not. The best outcome that I had hoped for was for Pakatan Harapan to deny them a huge marginal win so that they would have to face a stronger opposition in Parliament.

In part, it was the fatigue of the past two elections where Harapan had come so close, yet there was no cookie. 2008 was a nice surprise when they managed to wrest three states from BN. Everyone celebrated that one.

2013 was the huge disappointment. I, and many Malaysians, thought this would have been the one where Harapan would do it. Spirits were high and the effort put in was tremendous. Unfortunately, they won the popular vote but not Parliament.

And two days ago, when the results for the 2018 general election started trickling in and I could see it was just neck-and-neck from the very beginning, I was still pretty subdued and still told myself that I had to manage my expectations.

But as the hours crept by and it didn’t seem like Harapan would be losing the lead, I started to get excited. When the number of constituencies that turned red increased and inched closer to the halfway mark of 112, Mahathir announced that Harapan had enough seats to win.

I was elated, but to be honest, still very apprehensive. You never know what could happen. Malaysians have been used to so many dirty tricks being pulled that we saw everything through tinted shades of grey. We were still not counting our chickens before they hatched.

But slowly, it cemented together. It was the next morning before the official results released by the Election Commission finally showed that Harapan had won by a simple majority. Even then, they didn’t say outright that Harapan had won. They just announced the number of seats won.

It would take another 20 hours before the new prime minister from Harapan would finally be sworn in by the king. But he did it, and unbelievable as it is, BN has finally been ousted from the government after 61 years.

The fact that BN, while in power, created so many hurdles and challenges to make it almost impossible for them to lose made it even more satisfying. With the gerrymandering and redelineation of constituency borders, it still couldn’t keep Harapan from winning.

It boiled down to two simple things, actually. Firstly, it was the fact that Harapan finally had a leader that could bring together the hodge-podge of parties that formed the coalition.

Sure, it was Mahathir, who they may have considered to be evil in the first place, but I guess people were convinced enough that he really did want to right the wrongs that he had committed when he was a member of BN and was the prime minister for 22 years. This may still be an issue, but it was the greater good that people were looking at for now.

Secondly, corruption in the government finally became too much for Malaysians to accept. The 1MDB scandal was definitely a big one. Initially, it was too complicated for people to comprehend. But eventually, people realised that it just boiled down to simple abuse of power and theft.

Enough is enough.

BN just had to go. They had to be shown the exit because absolute power corrupts absolutely. No one party should ever be in power for too long, and in BN’s case, they shouldn’t be in power forever.

Harapan’s win has opened the floodgates to a better democracy and more accountability. Now, like it or not, BN has to clean themselves up, and the best way for them to do this is to be the opposition.

One of the first things BN needs to do, among many, many other things, is to sack Najib Abdul Razak as their president. But this will be discussed in another instalment of my column. So please wait for that.


Zan Azlee

* The author is a writer, documentary filmmaker, journalist and academic. He is feeling happy. Visit FATBIDIN.COM to view his work.


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14 Responses to “It’s hard to be gracious towards Barisan Nasional”

  • SheePAPore:

    Thought the Msia Tsunami would happen in SG in GE2015 but sadly, the daft citizens preferred to be gracious towards a dead man (who rightly called them daft) and stupidly gave their votes to the d**honourable son instead of voting for our own future.

    What lky’s unable to do, Dr M has done it!

    When both feel something is going wrong, lky failed to get up from where he is but Dr M got out from where he was to right the wrongs. One BS, the other defeated BN!

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  • Bapak:

    We just hope that in two-year times, we can read this same letter but BN change to PAP.

    Malaysians are smart. Kick out BN, save them a lot of unnecessary GST money. Can use saving to buy own drumstick and dont have to give chickens away. Malaysian boleh.

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  • Perspective:

    Malaysians had enough of Najib and BN but Singaporeans haven’t had enough of LHL and PAP! LOL!

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  • MarBowling:

    Aftermath Malaysia Tsunami that brought PH under Dr M into power, 2 Important scenarios to happen before GE2020/2021 for the survival and grip of the Imperial Throne by the PAPigs:

    Those hungry flesh-eating crabs sleeping so far inside the body start to eat the host sending him to his Maker earlier! Squashing his greed and desire to squat on the Imperial Throne until 70 and beyond!


    In order to keep drawing $million salaries and obscene bonuses for themselves and familees and keep the PAPigs in power for the next 50 years, a gang of Opportunists may consider plan to oust or usurp the LOONG squatting Emperor w/o clothes and Empress Dowager who they must have FINALLY REALISED that the 2 is NO LOONGER an Arset oops Asset but rather a LIABILITY for the Continuity and Survival of the PAPigs Party! Big Nose Teo and 69.9%, What do you think?

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  • Fire in the belly:

    Old man always challenged singaporean… yu got to have the fire in the belly, yu must have the gumption to stand up for what is right. The difference between singaporean and mAlaysian is that exact fire in the belly , that gumption to do what is right… singaporean are no-ballers, can talk and cannot act. PUppies see through this – singaporean lack that fire in belly (which old man so desired yet he was the one who hammered everyone who stood out) in short – no balls. I had seen and heard many singaporean who KPKB.. that all they will do plus silently protesting.

    Perhaps yu can say the Malaysian way is a bit a mob in style..but if yu dealing with a Hugh organised mobster. To get rid of a Hugh mobster – yu will need to turn to equal mob style and street protest like Bersih (show no fear) and thunderous roar for of reformsi grew louder ie bringing out the silence and oppression the people had felt a Long time…

    What we need to bring down in Singapore are the corrupt clony economy, the silence and oppression will grow louder -till we let it all out, this is the thing we need to bring change.

    Cry-Halimah sham election is enough to tell us Chan CS is not a man with much integrity and a man who will do anything to fit and engineered the politics, Singaporean are not stupid and can see the tainted-ness and his small boy character , At best a Boy Scout and his style of Gerry-meandering shows he will violates the constitution and manipulate all principles in good politics, many singaporean are frustrated that the Presidential election was hijacked by Chan CS,

    Singaporean can correct the politics by eliminating this CCS clown (who is the leegime coffin balls carrier) .. just eliminating this clown will set off the engineered plan of yu know who… singaporean should stand up to what old man said – have fire in the belly and the gumption to stand up to fight what is right..

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  • Bapak:

    And that is why Malaysian will always laughing at us behind out back.
    A country of citizen without backbone. Dmaintaining democracy starts from every GE, never expect those in power to maintain it.

    How North Korea becomes like this is b’cos their ancestors allow the first, second & third to run free hand with no resistance. Chilren suffer, how stupid.

    Malaysian has taught Sinkies one very valuable lesson. Your future is in your own hands not these politicians. Wake the fiack up, Sinkies!

    Malaysians had enough of Najib and BN but Singaporeans haven’t had enough of LHL and PAP! LOL!

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  • LIONS:

    They are all arrogant.
    Even their doggie$ act arrogantly and selfishly.

    My fren lives besides a senior education officer/grassrooter whose maid is taught to leave debris on the public space between their houses?


    PAP GRASSROOTERS are BAD ROLE MODELS IN THEIR DAY TO DAY LIVING,causing NUISANCE n even littering the punlic spaces instead of helping to keep Singapote Clean n Green.


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  • rukidding:

    First of all, my Congrats to ALL Malaysians !

    Malaysians,….BOLEH !

    If readers were to go to facebook,…you did be surprise to find my patriotic Songs and videos being released by young Malaysians .

    I was there ,with them every minute,…and I could feel their PRIDE and JOY.

    Suddenly, the AIR which we breath in Malaysia…becomes so Fresh again !

    It was 100 times the “type of goose bum feelings” as compared to our Kallang Roar !

    Singaporeans , I must say,…pales in comparison…as all Sinkies seems to be either “timid” , “Ball less” or “full of self”.

    I don’t believe Sinkies are “United”…we are a “Rojak” country now…and only $$$$ is the most important matter that our G needs !

    Malaysians don’t even need NS to “wayang” and show the “imaginary Country’s defend and strength”…its Malaysian PEOPLE have already shown that they are “United” as ONE !

    I doubt, Singapore still can “revive” those Kallang Roar and make its OWN Citizens become UNITED as ONE and as Patrotic as what I had witness in Malaysia two days ago !

    We need a CHANGE OF REGIME !

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  • Change We Must:

    I still don’t believe a leopard can change its spots. He was a dictator who locked up so many people similar tactic used by our dictator. He was the one who change all the rules and laws to benefit himself and his authority. Najib just used those of his laws to continue his legacy. So who fault? Now this old fox tried to be a good guy and revert his laws in Malaysia, because his time is running out and he no longer needed it. Singapore might face the same problem if we have a “Najib” here in the future. Because our dictators had also change the laws to hold on to the power. See, both of them are from the leopard family.

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  • Manalovisky:

    Anwar was from UMNO

    Mahathir was also from UMNO

    Would one day when they say, enough, we ( Umno,Keadilan, Prebumi, Amanah) should unite and think of a way to skin Singapore once and for all!

    Ha ha ha, learn from them?

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  • Jman:

    BN has Long become a band of thieves.

    It is absolutely disgusting they lasted for so Long. Something is seriously wrong with democracy. The way BN bought support, the way Puea Thai bought support, it is nothing short of theft and abuse on a grand scale.

    Democracy doesn’t work when there are so many voters who are so susceptible to vote buying because of their harsh circumstances. It needs fixing. But here we are, stuck as we are repeatedly lectured by the West on the merits of democracy, regardless of all other factors.

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  • yes man faceless bureaucrats:

    //Democracy doesn’t work when there are so many voters who are so susceptible to vote buying because of their harsh circumstances.//

    can’t blame democracy.

    it is the abuse of it lar, usually by unscrupulous powerful people with yes man eunuchs + layers of yes man faceless bureaucrats + yes man biting dogs. for these people, democracy is just a facade for them to wear it as a badge behind their no-so-democratic intention.

    sinkie land also democratic right ? yet we have our own 4 = 5 and selected = elected to show how our own democracy works.

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  • Python 5:

    Zan Azlee, malaysians must outlaw BN and the weighing scales emblem like the Germans the Swastika and the Arabs the Star of David.

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  • Python 5:

    Zan, that RM1T debts,

    msians should seized all the funds and ill gotten gains from all the convicted BN members to pay that huge RM1T debts back.

    and don’t forget to expose thoroughly any PAP govt,TH, GIC, CPF involvement in 1MDB to the US DOJ, and the global media.

    GD Star Rating

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