GEORGE TOWN: Pakatan Harapan needs to cultivate a new strategy to counter the combined political narrative of Umno and PAS that the present Federal Government is controlled by the DAP, said a lawmaker.
Klang MP Charles Santiago, who is also a DAP leader, said that Umno and PAS have successfully persuaded their Malay electorate audience that their special rights, Malay institutions and Islam are under siege by the ruling government.
The concept of using race and religion to divide and rule has been practiced in the past and it had worked for Barisan Nasional coalition until the general election on May 9th last year.
“But it is making a comeback now, as some quarters gravitate towards it because they are unhappy with the progress of the present government despite the emergence of more wrong doings by the previous administration.
“We need to counter such perceptions because at the heart of it, is the apathy towards corrupt practices which can ruin any political establishment and any nation over time,“ Santiago told theSun here.
History has proven over decades that corruption will ruin the pillars of good governance and with it, the wealth of any country, said Santiago.
“But for now, Pakatan is struggling to deal with the lies and misguided notions of their rivals – Umno and PAS. There is a feeling of hopelessness among some people unless Pakatan can reclaim the initiative to convince the people that the country is on the right track.”
Santiago claimed that PAS and Umno cyber warriors have hijacked social media and corners of the internet to peddle deceit and it has worked to an extent because the people do not see and feel the changes after PH took over.
Hence, he said the national coalition needs to restore confidence to their process of reforming the system and to find ways to effectively communicate against the onslaught of slander.
“We must also work toward countering the narratives of hatred and of the siege mentality. We must inform people that there would be a period of downturn until the country can recover from decades of abuse to the economy.”
The government should not allow the peddling of slander to creep into the business of governance, Santiago said.
He was commenting on the remark made by political scientist Dr Wong Chin Huat that despite the Felda and Tabung Haji monetary scandals, the Malays feel under-siege and that corruption has become politically irrelevant.