Voters must sift through campaign narcissism, vitriol and venom for a new Malaysia

We are now on the threshold of a momentous occasion that could determine the future of this nation based on the democratic tenets of a government of the people, for the people, and by the people.

Thus, our choice of government should be one that assures us of a secure future for our children and youths, and one that embodies ethical and moral principles. It also needs to be accountable to the electorate, and not to the political party it represents.

This has been the dream of past, and even current generations, but so far, has remained elusive. To even contemplate it is wishful thinking.

This is simply because politicians, have all along, never prioritised the peoples’ welfare. Only their own interests.

It is only during the election campaign that they make all sorts of promises for the benefit of the people, which, speaking from experience, have never materialised. The same antics by the politicians are on full display in the 15th General Election campaign period in Malaysia.

In addition, the campaign trail has exposed the ugly and the narcissistic side of election mania, camouflaged by the sardonic pretence of selfless concern for the wellbeing of others.

Religious bigotry and misogyny have made their ugly appearance through leaders of so-called Islamic parties.

One of the leaders had the audacity to condemn to hell those who did not vote for his party, thus elevating himself to the position of a demi-god.

Not to be outdone was a menteri besar from the same party who questioned the ability of female candidates from an opposing party, implying that they could not function as well as male candidates, because of their gender.

Then, there are the politicians who aspire to be prime minister, promising to lead this nation out of the current economic stagflation, besides providing an ethical, honest, and accountable government.

Except for the new aspirants for the post, the former prime ministers’ track records are nothing to shout about. Some say, even dismal.

However, the new aspirants have pledged a new beginning, sans corruption, religious bigotry and racism, and a renewed respect for the rule of law. Hopefully, this is not another hollow campaign promise.

Another distasteful aspect of this election campaign is the blatant use of racism, especially by Malay political parties. They spew venom on one Chinese dominant multiracial party, which has become the bogeyman of sorts, for all the ills that befall the Malay polity, when in fact, the Malays themselves are to be blamed for their past, present, and even future predicaments.

This is unfortunate because the politically connected Malays are a rent-seeking lot.

The East Malaysian states of Sabah and Sarawak have, during this campaign period, upped their ante on provincialism, while neglecting the welfare of the people.

Most of them in the rural areas are living below the poverty line and do not enjoy basic amenities such as electricity, potable water and safe and reliable communications.

Voters need to sift through the melee and cacophony of expletives, racial torment and religious bigotry emanating from the current GE15 campaign trail, and separate the chaff from the grain, in order to provide a fruitful future harvest for this country.

This is the personal opinion of the writer and does not necessarily represent the views of Twentytwo13.

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