It has been difficult to fathom how things have come to pass at MCA. From a near ideal appearance of potency in leadership (no pun intended) by the combination of the youthful DS Ong Tee Keat and experienced DS Chua Soi Lek as President and Deputy respectively, augemented with characters such as DS Liow Tiong Lai and DS Ng Yen Yen as VPs, it looked to be ready to recover from the devastation of PRU 12. It is hence unfortunate to see things come to pass as they have.
Now DS Ong Tee Keat is being challenged for the Presidency by the man he succeeded, TS Ong Ka Ting, the man who shouldered the responsibility for the massive losses incurred by the MCA at PRU 12. This presents a particular quandry for MCA. Many would agree that what MCA needs now is a leader who can unite the party, something that DS Ong Tee Keat had patently failed to do. It is no wonder then that we find him trailing in the polls despite being the incumbent!
However, few insiders will really agree that TS Ong Ka Ting is the ideal replacement as President. OK, so, there is all this rhetoric about how he is still 'respected' in the party. Nevertheless, many in the party would quietly agree that it was TS Ong and his brother's manuevering of MCA candidates that shares part of the blame, with Pak Lah's weak leadership, for creating a pre-election rift in the MCA leading to the subsequent Chinese electorate's rejection of BN and MCA.
For MCA, this leaves the party with only one other choice to unite the party, the 'Hollier Than Thou' DS Chua Soi Lek! However, this is a man that, having being caught with his pants down, remain unrepentant! OK, so, if he needed care only of the moral sensitivities of his more forgiving core Chinese constituemts, he may be fine, but as a senior BN leader, DS Chua has to be a morally acceptable to all religions and creeds... and he wants to be THE Chinese leader for ALL Malaysians!
And so, MCA is now left to choose as their President, an Election Loser, a Disgraced Poltician and a Boy Scout! Boy Scout? Well, everyone knows that what redeems DS Ong Tee Keat to the Rakyat in general is his apparent steadfast course in resolving the Port Klang Free trade Zone (PKFZ) issue, including bringing all the corrupt involved to book! That the MCA Youth Chief, somewhat implicated in the scandal, is opposed to DS Ong adds further spice to it.
Unfortunately, the Rakyat's sympathy towards DS Ong Tee Keat is not in line with political reality. You see, DS Ong, being a 'Boy Scout', has been rather naive in his years in power. There is an attempt to 'reform' MCA being pursued whilst he's been its president. The effort may have started as something else, but at least at present, the aim is to make MCA a 'true' political party, divorced from special interest groups, such as not just triads, but also business and education...
... hold on, MCA not representing Chinese business and education groups? What the...? So, what's the point of the MCA then!? Hello, putting aside that a political party not tied to 'special interests' is an oxymoron... how is it even conceivable that the MCA would not be working hand-in-hand with Chinese NGOs and 'special interest' groups like in the past? Kicking out any triad influences is OK, but surely cutting off Dong Jiao Song would be political suicide... oh... DS Ong...
In addition to all the mess described above, it seems no one serious about who leads the MCA in the long term is really focussed on the 28 March MCA Presidential elections. This is because, whoever becomes President this time around will only hold the post for 1 year, following which there will be another election, where... jeng, jeng, jeng... the TRUE PRESIDENT of MCA that will lead the charge into PRU 13 will emerge...
So if we don't focus on the next MCA President, should we be focussing on the candidates for Deputy then? One candidate has already declared his rival should really be running for President! Perhaps DS Liow simply being cautious when running for Deputy? Perhaps DS Liow is continuing to take advice from his mentor and some time protector, TS Lim Ah Lek? Perhaps knowing what a mess this election will be, TS Ong Ka Ting was asked to contest to protect DS Liow?
Whatever it is that is really happening behind the scenes, to an outsider, even an informed one, it appears MCA is still lost. Ironically, I believe TS Lim Ah Lek himself should take over the MCA rather than leave it to TS Ong simply to protect his protege of unproven worthiness. If it is only for 1 year, why not? Else, the second irony is, perhaps DS Chua Soi Lek is the best choice after all! Disgraced to some, perhaps, but at least he's neither as divisive nor a puppet President.