MUST READ / Politics in general / Umno & Barisan Nasional

Silencing the oil royalty pandemonium

Finally, Umno senses that it is a waste of energy and time to keep harping on the issue through the media. This is somewhat similar to the whole Terengganu Menteri Besar fiasco that happened nearly 2 years ago when the appointment of the incumbent Menteri Besar, Datuk Seri Idris Jusoh was  turned down by the Yang Di Pertuan Agong who is also the Sultan of Terengganu.

What happened next was a very public spat between the Prime Minister and the Yang Dipertuan Agong in the mainstream media.

An issue that should have been discussed in private and in a respectful manner was being exhibited in front of the public in the most horrendous of circumstances.

It took nearly 2 weeks for the Prime Minister to come to his senses and to actually go and meet the Agong. Finally he had to apologise to him and reverse his decision regarding Idris Jusoh.

In the end, the Sultan’s choice, Datuk Ahmad Said, became the Menteri Besar replacing his dejected predecessor.

But what did Umno learn from this lesson?

Absolutely nothing.

Its political leaders, suffering from a ‘syok sendiri’ attitude couldn’t help but ignite an issue that most of them are not familiar with in the first place.

Like I stated in previous article, “does it kill you to talk at the same table about this matter?”.

Datuk Seri Hishamuddin Hussein was correct in saying:

“If the members do not fully understand the issue, they can use existing channels to seek explanations. Making sensational statements that can destroy the party’s image is, even in the past, something that we do not allow,”

Hence a gag order for Umno politicians is imposed so that any redress should be done privately and not through the media. The personal agenda of promoting oneself in public over issue they cannot contribute must stop.

Bear in mind, the gag order is to stop Umno politicians from making statements about the  oil royalty issue in the media. It is not about stopping them to discuss the issue altogether. They may discuss it, but within the existing channels.

The damage control is to be done so that views from the grassroots can be obtained without the unnecessary pandemonium surrounding it.

Hopefully at the same time, Umno leadership can find the time within their busy schedules to arrange for meetings with the MP of Gua Musang, Tengu Razaleigh Hamzah (“Ku Li”) and discuss this in a healthy manner.

This gag order afterall, is also to protect Ku Li from being lambasted over the newspapers and the internet by Umno leaders and members. Now this is the most beneficial thing Umno is doing with this gag order. And Ku Li should see this as a good thing.

Unfortunately, some had took the advantage to use this specific instructions and spun it for their own political mileage. Even outsiders are poking their nose where it doesn’t belong.

Even Ku Li, the central figure of this issue made a misdirection in his latest statement regarding the gag order.

He said:

I think Umno should apply this gag order properly and, from today onwards, also stop altogether talking about Allaryaham Tun Razak (Hussein). Umno Baru would consider him a traitor…

We should also put a gag order on speaking about the late Hussein Onn. He, at least, was a man of  principle, and an absolute enemy of corruption and the abuse of power. He was such a threat to Umno Baru that he, like the late Tunku Abdul Rahman, was shut out from it, and died outside the party.

What does Tun Razak and Tun Hussein Onn got to do with the gag order on the current oil royalty issue? The gag order has got nothing to do with them both. We can speak about them whenever we want.

We understand he made those statements as a form of sarcasm. But it does not augur well for him as well. To re-use the term Umno Baru instead of Umno is an intended malice on his part. How could he be malicious towards this political party as it is the same political party he joined back in 1996? After feeling frustrated with his opposition partners of DAP and PAS back then, he and another 600,000 Semangat 46 members returned to Umno. Did Ku Li speak anything about Kelantan’s oil royalty right after he joined?

It is hoped that with this gag order, politicians will not inflame this issue further. With all due respect to Ku Li, he should know that Umno is trying to protect his reputation from being maligned by young and brash Umno politicians who don’t know any better.

It is not about curtailing debates or discussions as the channels to do that still exist.

It is about respecting the political party you are representing as a politician. If it had derailed itself from whatever purpose it should be doing, discussions should be made with the leadership in the most respectful manner.

Now, how should Umno and BN use this issue to their advantage?

Based on a comment by this blog’s commenter, the Federal Government and Petronas can amend the contract made long ago to whatever arrangement they feel more suited to the present situation.

What is the basis for the 5% royalty made in 1975? Can it be reduced to 2%?

And since all the oil drilled is within the Federal Government’s territory (more than 3 nautical miles from the state) can the agreement be changed so that no states should be given royalty but instead, a more just amount should be apportioned to all states so that the less developed state such as Perlis and Kelantan can be given it’s fair share of the oil revenue.

The point is, contracts can be amended between two agreeing parties.

I stated in the previous article, “Ku Li command some respect from the people, especially lately when all the opposition portals such as Malaysian Insider, MalaysiaKini and Malaysia Today had been singing praises for him in order to manufacture the perception that he is the voice of conscience within Barisan Nasional.”

Thus, extrapolating from the sentence above, we know that Ku Li has a lot of support from the supporters of the opposition. These are also voters in the next general election.

Imagine if BN leadership gives Ku Li some sense of purpose within the government. For now, a person who doesn’t feel a sense of belonging to the party, will definitely not contribute anything to achieve any of its goals. And what is BN’s goal in the next few years? To win the general election so that they can continue serving the people.

BN should take advantage of Ku Li’s new found supporters. Why should Umno and BN let Ku Li be stolen by the marauding Pakatan Rakyat and lose more votes?

Are you getting your strategy right by further alienating Ku Li from BN?

I am too tired to suggest what form of role that Ku Li can undertake. I have said it countless times.

But since Dato’ Sri Najib’s administration does not even want to seek help from Tun Mahathir about the economy (Mahathir can go around the world to help attract FDIs for instance), we shouldn’t hold our breath about Ku Li either.

Egos have destroyed civilisations, it can easily destroy politicians.

12 thoughts on “Silencing the oil royalty pandemonium

  1. Salam JMD,

    I like ur opening.. baaaiiik punya warning. Yes, they never learn. In the Tganu case, the losing party still bodoh sombong.. no surprise there since Umno warlords still behaving the same – BODOH SOMBONG !

    Mereka hidup diawangan…. tapak kaki tak merasa kerasnya batu dan tajamnya duri. Turunlah sekali sekala ke bumi. Biar kasar sikit kulit tu… ni macam pipi, tembam dan gebu je. Kalau jumpa, first thing i do, i nak cubit2 pipi ‘mereka’, bila secret service tak nampak !

    Maybe …… Petronas no money oredi ?

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  2. PMNaji and UMNO/BN should follow Sun Tzu.

    Open conflict should be a last resort. Especially if your arguments are weak or dubious, you don’t know if you can win for sure or what the repercussions of a hollow victory might be!

    Diplomatic language, adroit strategy and negotiations behind closed doors and publicly demonstrated statesmanship might produce more acceptable and lasting results.

    By unconsciously allowing Tengku Razaleigh to be portrayed as an underdog and champion of the downtrodden Kelantanes, UMNO/BN will lose much PR points and VOTES big time come GE 2013!!

    dpp
    We are all of 1 race, the Human Race

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  3. I like your last sentence. Ego has not only destroyed civilisations and politicians…
    Reminded me about the most powerful and obedient angel thrown to hell cause of his ego.
    just want to add that other than ego, mere stupidity can also have a detrimental effect.
    mmmm.. the legacy Pak Lah left. wow. one man can REALLY made a difference, a BIG difference.

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  4. JMD,

    You are one of the most polite and diplomatic persons I read in blogosphere. And a well argued article with penetrating points, too, this one. I wish Pak Seikh Anwar reads it. And others as well.

    Indeed, egos have destroyed civilisations and it can easily destroy politicians. Why politicians have been so gullible and pursue glory seeking and self defeating short-term objectives has often baffled me.

    Not only DS Najib not align himself with the views put out by Elder Statesman Tun Dr Mahathir about the economy and politics, he even kept the loud-mouthed and TDM-bashing Nazri in his cabinet. Perhaps he had felt responsible being a part of “the flip-flopping and auto-piloting” past administration that TDM whacked until his Chief withdrew from the post. But then he was the beneficiary of that Pak Lah bashing. Perhaps he lacks confidence in himself and keeps Nazri as a bouncer as and when TDM comes out with stinging criticisms against him. Now TDM has given his support to Perkasa which is fighting for the protection and the promotion of Malay rights and privileges that DS Najib has been perceived as not doing because of his heavy leaning on non-Malays on such issues as liberalisation and Chinese schools.

    I support the idea of family discussions and expression of harsh views thru the proper channels within UMNO. The party Sec Gen should be organising such “regular consultations” but one hardly reads about him doing anything concrete. Again, perhaps his services are not tapped or he is unclear and uncertain of DS Najib’s policy lines and, of course, the safest thing to do is not to do.

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  5. I think you are wasting your time trying to protect the administration.
    In management terms, this govenrment is not only top heavy, but very bereaucratic from bottom up.

    When the British proposed, malayan Union, the whole idea is to streamline the govenrment, forgetting the monarchy and the feudalistic nature of the malays at that time.
    So we are stuck with small state bereaucracies before formulatng any federal govenrment initiatives.

    Ideally, there should be one PM and two DPMs, one for peninsular and another for sabah and sarawak. The areas around penang and seberang prai, klang valley and johore baru should be administerd defferently as they are urban based and rely heavily industires, and should therefore, be administered by someone, who are not rural biased.

    And the education system/curriculum should be for the parents, teachers, school adminsitrators and pupils to decide and not by some bereaucrat from the education department.

    After many years, the states and the federal govenrment are still haggling over oil rights. This can only mean one thing. The country is now dependent on mineral rights to perform.
    That means, the policies of the past many decades failed to extract sufficient taxation income, whether at state level or federal. That also means that whatever policies that have been done were not succesful or not implmented in a succesful manner, or were failures.

    Do we still need this party to lead us forward? Unfortunately there does not seems to be any viable alternative either.

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    • If you think JMD is wasting his time, why do you bother coming in and wasting our time having to read your comment?

      What is your purpose in talking about the Malayan Union whose idea of doing up the Malays was vehemently protested against and it got chucked out and gone?

      What “stuck with small state bereaucracies before formulatng any federal govenrment initiatives” are you talking about? You just like to say things for the sake of saying them, don’t you? And here is JMD trying to put out his views to make things better for the country.

      And you simply say there must be 2 DPMs – presumably to cater for your nominees? Why not 3 or 4 DPMs man, one for Penang as well. Then you ramble on about one thing after another saying they are all “failures”.

      Finally you asked, “Do we still need this party to lead us forward?” But you have no answer to the question yourself, saying, “Unfortunately there does not seems to be any viable alternative either.” Come on man, get real, become meaningful. If you are opposing or criticising, jolly well get some verifiable facts or substantiated arguments. After all, from the name you use, you are seeking the truth, aren’t you?

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      • I am only trying to say that the federal govenrment is too large, extending its power into states and undermining state authority, hence increasing bereaucracy as we now have to deal with federals, state federals and state govenrment.

        Better to abolish all state govenrment thus saving one layer of bereaucractic red tape and manpower(as in proposed Malayan Union) or, have smaller federal govenrment and allow all states autonomy in many areas (as what it should be when we acheived independence).

        The syariah legal system is a perfect example. We now have two sets of laws, meaning double the legal expenditure, paying for court cost, judges and all the infra.

        Same with bereaucracy. Fedral govenrment gives money to federal agencies in states, and not directly to states in the case of sabah and penang (and possibly many others). So we have the burden of having to employ thousands of extra people doing the same job but having to do it twice.

        The fact that, as a small oil and gas producer, we should be ashamed that after many years of independence, we are still squabbling over what God has given us, although, we are barely net exporter, as we consume alsmost as much as we produce, except in LNG.
        In Norway, they make it a point not to use any money obtained from oil and gas and the govenrment there, simply survive on taxation garnered from its productive citizens, which benefit from free healthcare and education and very good welfare benefit.
        Their oil and gas money is simply deposited in funds for future norwegians.

        In this country, oil and gas money is used to buy political patronage (a form of bribery) by giving away wasteful contracts and subsidise (like petrol and diesel). If you can afford a car, then you cannot consider yourself to be poor and should be able to pay for the market price of petrol and diesel. This amount is very substantial and benefits only smugglers as many fishermen can survive selling their diesel quotas instead of being a productive fishermen.

        This can only means that our system has failed to produce productive citizens, who are able to support the govenrment in the form of tax payment.

        A very good example was the malaysia cup in football. Nothing beats the malaysia cup in its heyday. The stadiums of Kallang and merdeka were pact with supporters. Unfortunately, FAM has decided that giving footballers a decent earnings is bad for football and presently, its on drips, if not entirely irrelevant. And yet, the powers at FAM is still remains. The same can be said about the country.

        JMD : Thank you Truthseeker/Sputjam. Why lah exposing yourself with the other pseudonym?

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        • Sorry! forgot to change the tags after engaging with Dr Zul’s blog and indonesiammaters which also uses wordpress under sputjam.
          Hope I will be allowed to continue to voice out in this blog.

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  6. What a way to insinuate your disgust towards politicians. My thoughts is this. Just allocate all the oil money gained by Petronas to all states fair and square. Every state should receive 1% of the total oil revenue of the whole country as oil royalty. Baru adil. All in all, 14% pay out by Petronas for all states.

    Instead of the current system of 5% sarawak, 5% sabah, and 5% terengganu.

    Easy.

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  7. Hi,
    Kuli looks older than mahathir eventhough they are the same age. but when they were young in the 70’s, kuli looks so much younger. and why nobody knows anything about his wife or children? is his sons ketua pemuda umno bahagian or something? or are they involve in any business?

    JMD : Dear Suzy, Ku Li is 12 years younger than Tun Mahathir. He is now 73. Kuli married late (mid 90’s). I am not sure whether they have any children. Thank you.

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  8. dear jmd,

    syabas, you are the real one malay whom i well agreed with. very hard to find one now days. carryon with your beautifull hard work. life isnt easy anymore as what UMNO had done to their people – xp the malays for more than 50 yrs. from 1st class now 3rd. in the rat race. maybe in perak, png. & sel. only. KiSIAN…
    what do you say young man?

    akkhan pk

    Like

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