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Malaysians increasingly worried BN will stage a coup

Mariam Mokhtar, Malaysia Chronicle

Muhyiddin Yassin, the Deputy Prime minister, was quick to blame PAS for attempting to discredit the government because PAS claimed there was a BN plan to seize power if the PR opposition were to win the 13th general election.

Muhyiddin said, “This is malicious and prejudicial aimed at scaring the people.”

PAS leaders are only interpreting the signs presented by BN.

Last October, at the opening of the Umno 61st annual assembly. Najib’s opening remarks were: “Even if our bodies are crushed and our lives lost, brothers and sisters, whatever happens, we must defend Putrajaya.”

The violent rhetoric sent shock waves throughout the business community. Visions of ‘crushed bodies’ and ‘lost lives’ to retain control of the federal government, do not paint a picture of economic prosperity nor inspire investor confidence

Najib ‘s poor choice of words presented more doom and gloom when he suggested that ethnic cleansing could take place in Malaysia if Malay supremacy was questioned.

At the BN convention which recently ended, Najib enthralled the delegates with phrases in several languages.

In Tamil, Najib said “Yipadai thorkin, yeapadai vehlum” ….If this team cannot win the battle, no other team can.

As before, it was Najib who set the tone for conflict.

Najib kept repeating how BN had to defend Putrajaya ‘in the people’s interest and not for egoistic reasons’.

He said the Federal Government had to be protected from the greedy and power crazy, saying BN had developed the country with “blood, sweat and tears”.

He also said, “Do not take any risk that will we will regret later”, which many took to mean as a warning.

These dark references worried PAS vice-president, Mahfuz Omar.

Mahfuz said, “The PM said last Saturday that if BN cannot win, no one else can or should win. This is a dangerous remark here... what will happen [if] BN loses the next election?”

“Does this mean that there will be a coup d’├ętat? A threat has been made by the PM, as part of preparations into the elections, it is as if Najib himself is not so confident of his party’s chances in winning.”

Veiled threats

Shah Alam MP, Khalid Samad, had also demanded an explanation from Najib. Khalid claimed they presented a veiled threat.

“Najib needs to make a clear explanation, so that all of us can understand. We want a direct response, if he doesn’t give a response, it shows that he is not willing to let go of power,” said Khalid.

Delegates to the BN convention will recall Najib’s diagnosis of how BN ‘suffered’ after the 2008 general election. He said that BN was damaged by “political diseases” – delusion, amnesia, inertia and arrogance – common in parties which clung onto power. He even singled out the 'arrogance' of BN's leaders.

Then, in a separate development, Raja Petra Kamaruddin accused Najib’s government of buying small arms such as pistols, sub-machine guns and stun-grenades from underground sources in the overseas black markets, and of sending the Youth wing of Umno for paramilitary training.

Within hours of the revelations appearing on RPK’s blog Malaysia Today, the site was compromised and shut-down.

Whether or not Najib has satisfactorily responded to RPK’s allegations also remains to be seen.

The charges made by the opposition MPs and the controversial RPK cannot be swept aside. Nor should they be condemned like when Muhyiddin claimed PAS leaders were being malicious and scare-mongering.

These concerns are valid.

It is the arrogance of both Najib and Muhyiddin which are shocking. Their refusal to acknowledge the rakyat’s concerns is deplorable.

When Mahfuz asked Najib about the threat of a “coup d’├ętat”, BN went on the defensive and Najib said the opposition could not work together as a team due to “differing ideologies”.

BN’s refusal to explain does not inspire confidence. Najib sidestepped the question and failed to cooperate. The rakyat does not feel reassured.

Maybe, the Prime Minister would like to reflect on that.

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