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Why Bersih must march again
BY: DATO’ R. RAJENDRAN
Many Malaysians have fond memories of Bersih. The people power movement changed the landscape of the nation from its first appearance until about a decade ago. Now Bersih seems to have gone into dysfunctional hibernation but there are compelling reasons why Bersih must march again.
When they were fully functional, Bersih organized protests and stirred people to march to Parliament or Istana Negara with petitions and memorandums to authority figures to listen to their grievances and complaints.
Never has it been a more opportune time than now for Bersih to be revived and rejuvenated to organize rallies and demonstrations to highlight the many sufferings of the rakyat by the present ‘back door’ government of Malaysia.
Bersih was initially formed to be a pressure group to act as a check-and-balance or watchdog on the government in holding free and fair polls. That was the basic premise on which it functioned but later they developed sweeping powers from the rakyat to watch over the well being of the nation.
This is a role that Bersih played very well and this is the time when there are double standards practiced by ministers, abuses of power and wrongdoing and corruption that the organization has to be resurfaced to intervene and set right.
The government of the day was not elected in a free and fair poll or general election but grabbed power by way of sleight and cunning and are not endorsed by the majority of Malaysians to hold power.
Since the emergence of the present government, they have been a thorn in the flesh of the rakyat and the people have been undergoing great suffering hardship and pain owing to the political decisions made by this government.
Bersih must gather the people to march again to counter this oppression. Government leaders blatantly violate SOPs while imposing hard, harsh penalties on those who run foul of the law and no serious punitive action is taken against these leaders for their transgressions.
Government leaders can travel in style while confining Malaysians to their homes and stifling the economy during this Covid-19 pandemic much to the anger and resentment of people. There are double standards and abuses going on.
Only an organization like Bersih can reset Malaysia by going to the ground (while complying to all the SOPs) to raise support and unite the people together to form a powerful voice of strength to counter the evil and wrong that this government is practicing.
There are a growing number of complaints and grievances against the present government such as their confusing habit of changing decisions at the last minute leaving people in the lurch and unable to plan their lives.
But Malaysians feel worse is yet to come as international watchers voice concern over the rampant and widespread corruption, the fact that Malaysia’s pandemic recovery rate is the worst and an economy that is grinding to a standstill.
Why Bersih needs to march again is now perfectly understandable as the oppression weighs heavy on Malaysians until there is a rise in mental health issues among the people such as depression and suicide.
Unemployment is at its peak and poverty is rising while government leaders live well on inflated salaries and only appear to serve themselves, their families and their cronies while the rakyat languish and suffer in misery.
There are other instances of things that are not right in this country and Bersih needs to seriously take a look at these issues to alleviate the acute pain and suffering of the people, the lack of social justice, the inequitable distribution of wealth and business and educational opportunities for the majority of the people.
Rise Bersih rise and hear the cry of the people and save Malaysia from a bleak future of gloom and doom by setting things right once more like you have done in the past. Let us all Malaysians raise and revive Bersih from its slumber to lead us through the darkness once more.
-THE MALAYSIA VOICE
** The views expressed on this opinion is of the writer and not the publisher