Pakatan Rakyat is in a mess. Not only is the coallition still reeling from the 9 January court decision in favour of DS Anwar Ibrahim, scuttling their plans to politically 'martyr' Anwar and replace him with a 'new' leader to lead them to glory, but the component parties are themselves facing internal rifts, most recently afflicting PAS in Kedah.
One would think, and many do, with the government roll-out of populist plans hitting high gear and the uncertainties of the world economy potentialy hitting Malaysia hard in the second half of the year that PRU13 is drawing near. With the natural aversion of number 4 adopted form the Chinese, May and June are running neck-and-neck for favourite PRU13 month.
However, this blogger takes a different view. An analysis of Pakatan woes and recent government populism or even globe-trotting economic scenarios should not be the pre-occupation of DS Najib Tun Razak and his various advisors on this matter. For as PRU12 shows us, BN's electoral performance would depend far more on its own electability as opposed to any other externality.
And this problem for BN is, whilst far from intractible, is not nearly nearing resolution due to specific incidents, a tendency to dodge difficult, politically precarious decisions and continued excess in respecting form over substance.
This blogger could easily pluck examples related to the handling of the MAYC issue (still unresolved despite pronouncements to the contrary on RTM at the end of last year) or other youth related issues. However, this is not even the easiest of actions that DS Najib could take to correct public perception over BN's continued credibility to govern... not that I said CREDIBILITY not CAPABILITY which on the balance most would still agree they have.
The question most on the lips of the electorate today, after the 'when are the elections' question, is "When is Shahrizat getting sacked!?" The exclamation mark, red and larger fonts are not for simple text emphasis only, but more often than not, this is also a reflection of the emotion behind the question.
Imagine the scenario, whereby hundreds of millions of ringgit of the rakyat's money was handed over to the husband of a sitting minister to deliver a national program. Not so bad as this has been done before in other countries, with some outcry, that is typically quitenned down when the sitting minister's husband, or wife, ACTUALLY DELIVERS WHAT WAS INTENDED TO BENEFIT THE RAKYAT.
However, in this case, the husband not only FAILS in the delivery, of all things, cows, or at least the meat off cows to the market. The husband blames everyone for his failure but himself, and to compound matters, he is found to have been buying condos with the money instead! And to add, the husband HAS BEEN APPOINTING HIS CHILDREN TO THE COMPANY!
All is still fine with the minister at this point. She could condemn her husband, distance herself from the act, even focus on saving her children, but no... SHE DEFENDS HER HUSBAND'S ACTIONS?! On a national platform, the party's annual convention! Sorry, is this not morally compromising enough and sufficient grounds for Shahrizat to be sacked?! She isn't even an MP, so where is the risk, really, vs. the significant benefit of gaining credibility?
And to add icing to the cake, KJ has been supporting Shahrizat, making people ask the question, why? Is he on the take too? How? As of course KJ's credibility is so low that anything he does is seen with circumspection, typically accompanied with not small measure of derision!
Until DS Najib and his team get big decisions like sacking a minister that is clearly morally compromised in the public eye right, BN is better off putting of PRU13, unless of course he is happy with repeating Pak Lah's feat of gaining a simple majority win. But of course, only a 2/3 majority will satisfy all that BN has regained its credibility with the rakyat, rather than just being grudgingly lived with for its capability.