Home Opinion So much for national unity

So much for national unity

First we had a “backdoor government”, then we had the “MoU government”. Now the stage is set for a “reluctant government”, if the developments following GE15 have been any indication.

So much for national unity, huh?

As much as these blocs spewed rhetoric about the need for cooperation, now that it’s time to put their money where their mouths are, it appears they’ve all left their wallets at home.

The election’s biggest winners – Pakatan Harapan and Perikatan Nasional – don’t seem interested in working with each other (not surprising given their histories), and Barisan Nasional largely seem unwilling to work with either (Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, perhaps desperate to save his job, being the main exception).

While we’ll likely never know exactly what the Yang di-Pertuan Agong told the warring PH, PN and BN factions during their various audiences, it’s not hard to guess what he’ll tell the BN MPs today: put aside your egos and pick somebody for the good of the country.

None of the possible permutations will make everyone happy. BN, which looked poised to play kingmakers, forced PN chairman Muhyiddin Yassin to relinquish the premiership a year ago and has spent over a decade backing their “No Anwar, No DAP” mantra. Now, it could have to pick which scorned ex to run the government for the next five years (if the imperfect marriage even lasts that long).

Or, PH will have to forget that PN’s Bersatu was the architect of its downfall in 2020 and agree to a reunion.

Either way, it’ll make for some interesting Cabinet meetings. One can only imagine the shouting matches one might hear from the corridors of Putrajaya if these sworn enemies are forced to work together.

Politics, already a nasty game, could be set to get even nastier. And, as voters, we should be taking notice.

The country is being held hostage by politicians too stubborn to compromise. While core principles and beliefs should be protected, that shouldn’t come at the expense of the millions waiting for their leaders to stop squabbling.

Since the fall of PH, “unity” has been every politician’s favourite word, closely followed by “stability”. Now, given the chance to finally deliver on both, PH, PN and BN have decided to pick neither. They’d rather leave Putrajaya empty than let anybody else get their way.

Remember this the next time one of them talks about unity or togetherness. Because, as essential as they are, it appears none of our leaders are committed to achieving them.

If they were, the King wouldn’t have had such a busy week. He’s like a father trying to break up his kids fighting in the backseat, except he can’t threaten to turn the car around and go home.

If only we could turn back the clock to Saturday morning. Then, maybe, we could all make some different – if difficult – decisions.


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