The votes are still being counted but it now looks certain that the Barisan Nasional Government has been routed and will have at most only a simple majority in Parliament. The Opposition looks like they may capture four states. So what will happen next?
The first question on many people’s minds is whether there will be racial unrest like in 1969, the last time the Opposition denied the government a two-thirds majority in Parliament.
Unspun thinks that 1969-like racial riots are unlikely to happen. Things are much different this time. What’s significant this time around is that the “defeat” of the Barisan Government is not perceived as a defeat for Malay interests. Even the Malays are pissed off at Barisan. Another reason is that the DAP has learned from 1969. Back then, after it “won” its cadres were beating their breasts and trumpeting their victory to one and all. Some of the unruly ones also insulted the Malays and that contributed to the racial violence. This time around the DAP is asking people to stay home and stay calm, refrain from victory parades.
What else would happen? It all depends on how the BN and the Opposition reacts to this situation from now on.
In Umno, Abdullah Badawi and his cronies will be cast out of their influential positions by the party. Who will take the helm? Najib seems likely, but in Unspun’s wilder imaginations the Umno guys might be so scared they ask Mahathir back from the wilderness to lead them again.
But no matter who takes the helm of Umno, their grip on power is loosened and with that, hopefully, they will be less arrogant and begin to listen to the People. That is the only way they can claw back to power now. Who knows? Some of them may even take to blogging (except Zam, of course, he can’t write and is a disgrace to journalism and the human race).
The Opposition will be euphoric if they aren’t already. But their real challenge will be when the dust begins to settle. The Opposition has, in the past, a habit of quarreling with themselves and partaking of infighting. Unspun hopes the Opposition can rise above their past and put changes into place that would make Malaysia a more open society and restore its sense of pride and competitiveness.
If the Opposition fails to do this, however, then Malaysia will be in for a long period of frustration as it would then be a little like Indonesia where leadership is weak and the nation lurches form one development to another with no sense of direction.
As the cliche goes, only time will tell but I’m sure we all hope for the best to come. There is much t be optimistic about, not least the ouster of the people who have been treating the rest of us Malaysians like idiots.
And yes, after all these years where Unspun has virtually written off Malaysia as a place to live in, it is refreshing to entertain thoughts of Malaysia being home again.
Unspun If that happens then