Three Reasons Why Pakatan Harapan Lost Its Bet
(Column by Tay Tian Yan, Deputy Executive Editor, Sin Chew p18)
After 40 months out of power, UMNO finally regained its base, and with what joy.
Oh, by the way, don’t forget to thank Pakatan Harapan for making it happen. The greatest credit should go to PH for UMNO reaping its biggest gain. Don’t you think so? Pakatan Harapan had ‘invested’ 88 seats, while UMNO only put forth 14 seats. In terms of investment, Pakatan Harapan provided 80% of the total capital, while UMNO only put in 20% of the stake.
UMNO not only won the position of Prime Minister and the government but also resolved its internal/external conflicts. The return on investment must be counted as more than 100%.
As the largest investor, Pakatan Harapan came out with nothing yet, their actions could have lasting effects in the future. Pakatan Harapan’s wishful thinking made it fall into a gamble in which it had no chance of winning.
How the Bet Was Lost.
- Pakatan Harapan’s hatred for Muhyiddin clouded their judgment
For Pakatan Harapan’s loss of power due to the Sheraton move had been too painful to forget. Although Mahathir was the initiator of the move, Pakatan Harapan chose to focus their grudge on Muhyiddin – looking for opportunities to avenge their pain caused by Muhyiddin.
There is nothing wrong with revenge, but you will end up hurting yourself by being reckless when you are guided by hatred.
Pakatan Harapan would not have fallen into helping UMNO and lose everything if Pakatan Harapan had not transcended its thirst for vengeance, accept the political reality post Sheraton move, and plan its positioning and direction rationally.
- Pakatan Harapan’s addiction to Anwar becoming the prime minister
Most know Anwar Ibrahim does not have the number but some fanatics still believe Anwar can create miracles. Anwar is not wrong. He is thoroughly a political animal (not in a derogatory way). His motivation to become prime minister is already part of his natural instinct, like an animal that would not give up the search for food just to survive.
The strange thing is that they were unwilling to open their eyes to see the “No Anwar, No DAP” resolution by UMNO, nor try to understand the resoluteness of the Malay society on that matter.
As a result, Anwar and Pakatan Harapan walked into the trap set up by UMNO. Some even believed in the possibility of a “coalition government” and a “war cabinet”.
- Thirst for Power, instead of Reforms
It is an adage question often asked. Are political parties and politicians here to gain power or to reform? In the face of the people and elections, they certainly will say it is all for reform. However, when it comes to their own interest, the pursuit is often power.
When Muhyiddin proposed the 7 point cross-party political reforms, he was prepared to draft an anti-party hopping law, restrict the prime minister’s two-term tenure, and give equal allocations to constituencies and so forth……. It was a rare opportunity.
Rational voters don’t care who is the government of the day is, they only care about policies that impacts them. These 7-points reforms are aligned with the objectives set out by our very own civil society! Yet Pakatan Harapan chose to turn down this chance.
Why? Because their intention was power, overshadowing their push for actual reforms. This is one lesson PH must heed to set itself back on the right path again.