So, the election of new UMNO leaders' over. A new President (and PM),new DP (and DPM) new VPs, new Wanita Chief, new Youth Chief, new Puteri Chief. This augurs well for a big change in outlook and party culture. Everyone seems to endorse the big change.But what change? In which direction? The Opposition seems to be somewhat saddened by Paklah's withdrawl for they have never had it so good. Their worst fear is a reversal to Mahathirism - a strong, "ruthless" (sic) but deft hand at the helm. Paklah, they say could not push his own reform through his partyline for he was such a nice guy - not ruthless.
Whilst there's so much talk about change in UMNO especially with regard to the attitude and behavior of the leaders, I haven't yet seen any clear focus on the national problems that need to be addressed. What's being done to halt the economic crisis, reduced productivity and export, increasing unemployment/layoff, increasing debt ratio to GDP and deficit, ensure the effective use of the RM60 b.stimulus package and stop leakages, dispel the negative or destructive charges made by foreign countries on the character of some leaders, stop corruption and misuse of power and previleges, reform the Police as recommmended by the Royal Commission, review the use of English in Maths and Science vis-a-vis the use of Bahasa as an integrative factor in nation-building, regularize/normalize/improve' the relationship between opposition State Govt. and the Federal Govt., revamp the solidarity of the Barisan coalition itself, reestablish respect fot the Sultan, face the reality of a two-party system in Government etc.
When we hold up these issues and relook at the new UMNO leadership line-up together with those in MCA, MIC,etc. do we feel very comfortable? We certainly need to see some party stalwarts and strongmen to be held up against certain issues and problems, to make us feel confident that firm hands will start to work on them. Otherwise the promised changes can just remain a..promise. Let's see what will happen in the next few months. Hopefully there'll be a Cabinet shakeup to show up the
giants appointed to deal with the issues.