22 January, 2011

Does Kita, the People’s Welfare Party, Stand a Chance to Change the Country?

Kita, the People’s Welfare Party, aims “to bring back the politics of goodwill and compromise that started this nation 54 years ago … so that politics and public service can be made honorable once again,” said its president, Zaid Ibrahim.

Neither of the current alternatives would do, he said.

The governing Barisan Nasional coalition “will always be autocratic and authoritarian,” while the opposition led by Anwar Ibrahim “says and does whatever it takes for the sake of winning elections.”

There was grand, idealistic talk of defending the secular nature of the 1957 constitution, ending discrimination, fighting ideas of “superiority and hegemony” (a reference to the Malay supremacists who would consign the country’s Chinese and Indian citizens to permanent second-class status) and ensuring “equal opportunities for all.”

Big words indeed for a new party, however laudable — especially given that Barisan and its predecessor, the Alliance, centered around three parties representing the country’s main races, the Malays, Chinese and Indians, have won every national election since independence.

Many would ask, too, why Zaid needs to start another party....more

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