Malaysiakini : 2. Syed Saddiq is facing serious charges in court
In July last year, Syed Saddiq was charged
in court for misappropriating RM1.12 million from his previous party
Bersatu. These are serious charges and if found guilty, he could face a
prison term of 10 years, whipping and fines.
A star witness in the trial admitted
that it was wrong to have withdrawn money from Bersatu Youth wing
Armada's bank accounts and transferred it to Syed Saddiq without
approval from the party's supreme leadership, indicating a strong case
Muda is essentially a one-person party. Many people
would be hard put to name other Muda leaders. Therefore, for Harapan to
ally with such a party, and worse give them 15 seats to contest, would
be sheer, utter folly.
3. Syed Saddiq previously had some RM250,000 in cash in his house.
In July 2020, the MACC grilled
Syed Saddiq for 11 hours over a report he made a few months earlier in
March of that year about the sum of around RM250,000 that he claimed was
stolen from his home.
He said most of the missing money was to fund renovations at his
house in Petaling Jaya. Of the missing sum, RM90,000 belonged to him
whereas RM50,000 belonged to his mother and RM70,000 to his father, he
But still, there were concerns as to why someone like him
would keep that amount of cash in his house when banking facilities are
so easily available.
4. Syed Saddiq is very close to Mahathir.
In 2019, Syed Saddiq openly praised
Mahathir using superlatives freely. Sample: “He is a workaholic who
never stops working. He listens to everyone's views, regardless of how
young you are. He loves unconventional ideas. He has the moral courage
to do things which no one else would. He always puts Malaysia first even
if it means sacrificing himself. That's Tun (Mahathir's honorific
Surely, someone who is so enamoured of Mahathir and whose
first full-time job (minister of youth and sports) was given to him by
Mahathir over many more senior well-deserving candidates, would indicate
that he still will have some loyalty to the man! Which brings us to the
5. Syed Saddiq may even be Mahathir’s plant in Harapan
is not as far-fetched as it seems. Mahathir’s entire premise in the
past politically is that the Malays must rule, no compromise, no power
sharing. Harapan’s sharing of power principle does not sit well with
this, which is why he chose to come into Harapan in the first place. The
ultimate aim was Malay supremacy as reflected in everything he said and
did after coming to power with a mere 13 MPs.
If Harapan is silly
enough to give Muda 15 or even 10 seats and if there was to be a major
shift away from Umno/BN, these seats could well tip the balance in
favour of Malay supremacy.
Syed Saddiq has been rather slick with
his social media posting, reflecting professional production which costs
money. People speculate on the source of that money.
may all be mere speculation Malaysian-style and Syed Saddiq may well
turn out to be as sincere as many people make him out to be, no doubt
impressed by his rhetoric, style and looks. But why take the risk? Which
brings us to the next and perhaps most important point.
6. Muda brings nothing to the table.
is it that Muda can give Harapan? Nothing. Where is the political
infrastructure to get wins? It’s the existing parties within Harapan -
PKR, DAP and Amanah - who will provide the machinery. Syed Saddiq
himself - and basically that’s all Muda has to offer - is not
sufficiently a brand that is valuable to Harapan.
has everything to gain by riding under Harapan’s sarong and Harapan has
everything to lose, much like Mahathir’s Bersatu then with the old
maverick becoming PM with a mere 13 seats while PKR, DAP and Amanah had
99 after the polls.
Is Harapan so stupid that they can be taken in
twice by the same old tactic? No, common sense (Trojan horse sense?)
will prevail this time.
7. Muda can turn turncoat, as Syed Saddiq did before.
if Mahathir is no longer a factor - and he is fast becoming a
non-entity - one must not discount the possibility of Syed Saddiq taking
Muda out of Harapan and aligning with some other group - there are many
people out there who want to become PM by hook or by crook and are
prepared to pay huge sums for it. And we Malaysians know politicians
especially can be bought, especially when the stakes are large.
8. Muda is too young.
are not talking about youth - we are talking about serious lack of
experience here. You need to have a measure of the problem before you
can even pretend to be able to solve it. If you are a political party,
you can’t be expected to be catapulted into the top ranks without a
proper leadership which is more than Syed Saddiq, a wide and varied
membership who are willing to work for the party and an infrastructure
base to support elections.
Instead, Muda is simply too young for
all of these and depends on its partners to provide such support – it’s
not youth, it is a baby taking its first stumbling steps. Let Muda grow
up first before embracing it into Harapan’s fold. Also, don’t all
Harapan’s component parties have youth wings? Why not ask Muda to
dissolve and join those wings and rise up to contest elections later?
Take their turn in other words.
Why do more experienced and even
seasoned politicians from the more established parties have to give way
to people with lesser experience? Which brings us to the next point.
9. Muda will undermine Harapan solidarity
you welcome Johnnies-come-lately into your party and give them prized
seats, depriving long-standing members of a chance to serve, there is no
way you cannot avoid disappointment and a fall in spirit. That is bound
to undermine solidarity within the Harapan parties.
On top of that some parties, especially the DAP, which are perplexingly inclined to continue to court Muda and make other confounding statements,
sow the seeds of suspicion within the Harapan coalition, raising
questions as to why they support this party and the basis for believing
they can succeed.
There is no need to put Harapan in this
situation. The next time Muda asks Harapan out, coyly say “some other
time” and don’t go out on an exploratory date which would give rise to
unnecessary titillating speculation. Better still, say it publicly -
10. Syed Saddiq and Muda don’t size up
politician’s testimonial is his record. Syed Saddiq, who for all
intents and purposes is Muda, simply does not size up as I explained in
other columns here and here.
multiracial and progressive approach does not fit the facts - he joined
Bersatu - a Malay-only party. He subsequently supported Mahathir’s
racist bumiputera congress held after Mahathir became PM.
later, he along with the likes of Mohd Shafie Apdal, a former Umno
member, talked of forming multiracial parties - the only reason for that
turnaround is probably purely opportunistic as they could not go any
further touting the racial line.
He admitted to being an Islamic
radical in his youth. After he became minister, he had an ambivalent
relationship with controversial Islamic cleric Zakir Naik, even inviting
him to his house for dinner.
that’s our 10 reasons. For its own good, Harapan should collectively
take a strong stance against allying with other parties in elections.
Why? Because you can get played again and none of them, with the
possible exception of PAS, have anything that they can offer in return.
PAS is intent on throwing itself at Umno’s feet instead. Its leadership
and thinking are poles apart from Harapan’s principles, even openly
advocating corruption. So, stick to yourselves, Harapan, and hope for
the best. It may be better than you expect.