As posted by Dr. Mahathir Mohamad at Che Det on August 17, 2016
1. I am surprised that there are people asking why a new party should be formed.
2. It should not if the dominant party in the Government coalition is playing the role and upholding the objectives for which it was formed or even some semblance of them.
3. Earlier when suggestions were made for a new party to contest against UMNO, they were rejected as it was hoped that if Najib ceased to be its president, UMNO could be resuscitated and regain the support of the people. The BN could still continue to be the Government of Malaysia.
4. But rapidly this idea became untenable. For one thing the wrong doings of Najib had become more open and serious. Not only was 1MDB losing billions but it was unable to pay debts. Then it was discovered that Najib had more that 2.6 billion Ringgit in his private account. A Prime Minister of Malaysia should not have this kind of money in his account no matter how he may have acquired it.
5. Then it was found that Najib had a total grip on UMNO. Any criticism of his leadership was not tolerated. Critics were expelled and tame leaders were put in place. They all seem to be obligated to Najib despite his wrongdoings. A vote of no confidence in him became impossible.
6. A personality cult was built up so that Najib could not be challenged or deposed. Nothing else mattered to UMNO, especially to UMNO members of Parliament.
7. It became clear there was no way for a leadership change and UMNO to be resuscitated.
8. With these developments the idea of a new party to contest against UMNO became not only attractive but also absolutely necessary.
9. UMNO is a race-based party. Until 2004 this race-based party had won the support of all races through a coalition with other race-based parties. Even the multi-racial parties in the BN were race-based.
10. The sophisticated and highly educated urban people may believe that racial politics is not in keeping with the times. But on the ground it is different. For the rural people who largely are poor, race is not only important but they believe is essential for their well-being. UMNO’s popularity is because it is a racial party.
11. If the new party is to compete with UMNO, it must give the people in the rural constituencies and the unsophisticated urban constituencies the kind of comfort associated with UMNO’s kind of racism.
12. Still the new party is not to be confined to Malays only but to all indigenous people – the Bumiputeras. Besides it is ready to accept Bumis and non-Bumis as associate members.
13. I have studied the fate of the parties which won independence in other countries. Most of them have disappeared. They had lost to new parties formed after independence because invariably they forgot the purpose for which the parties are formed and abused the power accorded them for personal gains.
14. UMNO had lasted much longer. But under Najib it forgot completely the purpose for which it was formed. Najib has brought shame to this once admired country. The whole world looks down upon Najib for being the worst Finance Minister of Malaysia and for all kinds of wrong doings perpetrated by him.
15. Only a new party can revive the country’s glory of the past. The new party will take cognisance of the changes in the thinking of all Malaysians. We had made progress. Our people are better educated, and are better off in many ways. Their perceptions of things and their aspirations have changed.
16. The new party will restore democracy and the rule of la which have been denied and abused by Najib.
17. The separation of powers between the legislative, the executive and the judiciary will be upheld. Additionally the legal service represented by the Attorney-General will be separated from the judiciary. The AG may not pass judgement over reports made to the police except when the reports are vexations and irrelevant. Even then the AG must give his reasons to the public and not just say there is no case to answer. Certainly he must not put the reports under the Official Secrets Act.
18. Any suspicion of corruption must be investigated and the report made public. All Malaysian officials must be seen to live within their means. This include all members of the Cabinet.
19. Foreign observers will oversee elections and will have full access to the operations of the election, both Government and Opposition.
20. The anti-corruption commission will have non-Government members. All transactions by Government must be transparent.
21. Borrowings by the Government must not exceed amounts fixed by Parliament. Guarantees by Government should regarded as borrowings by Government.
22. These are some of the things the new party will struggle for. It will strive to improve the performance of the Government and give a better life for the people. It will try to regain the respect and honour of this nation in the eyes of the people and the world.
23. UMNO cannot do all these anymore. That is why a new party has to be formed.
24. We aspire to serve the people. We pray the people will help us achieve our aspirations for them.