23 December, 2008

NEP No Longer In Existence ?

Pak Lah's strengths and weaknesses have unexpectedly contributed to the rise of Pakatan Rakyat. He believes that Umno can change and BN is able to win back support. However, he didn't sound convincing. He feels like optimistic.

He believes that BN and UMNO will recover before the next general elections, but as how they will perform in the elections, he said that will have to depend on DPM Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, who will take over as the prime minister soon.

On what makes him think BN and UMNO will recover, Abdullah said, "We have already captured quite many seats now!"

When asked to comment on the trend that many non-Malays are now leaning towards the opposition, he said BN component parties must work together closely and contribute their individual strengths towards BN.

"UMNO, BN, Gerakan, MIC and other component parties must work together. We must share our respective strengths. All component parties must trust BN, or it won't be able to operate at all."

He said MCA and Gerakan Rakyat must work harder to recoup the support of non-Malays

Perhaps, he does not get the needed support from within the party like he does among the public. If he fails to control Umno, he can change nothing; if Umno remains unchanged, nothing can be done.

During an exclusive interview with Sin Chew Daily at his private residence in Kuala Lumpur, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi also emphasized that the New Economic Policy is no longer in existence today.

"The NEP is a policy which is no longer in existence. The objective of this policy has been to eradicate poverty, as you all know."

The way the NEP was implemented had triggered the dissatisfaction among many people, including some Malays, adding that Malaysians needed a more transparent policy and open market.

He said, according to the UN Millennium Development Report, Malaysia is one of the countries that have drastically reduced the poverty rates. Nevertheless, the media have hardly reported on the country's success in reducing poverty.

"If you want to show the country's poverty in order to overthrow the government, or make the people very angry with the government, you can always show this kind of pictures on the TV every day. You can show the pictures of people lacking food supply, but that will be very unfair to the government, for the country's overall poverty rate has dropped!"

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