Do we really want to vote these people? (addendum)

I have unfairly excluded a couple of names in my previous post which I deem unacceptable. From the comments received, it is a known fact that there are many people who we feel will not do a good job representing us in the government but as a disclaimer, the names mentioned in this article and the previous one are the critical ones. Remember, some people vote for the party, not the individuals. Huge chunk of voters, especially the fence sitters will look at all the candidates representing a party, and not just the candidate representing their constituency.

1) Nazri Aziz

In 2004, Nazri Aziz announced that he will retire in 5 years time at the age of 54. He is now 59. That is already 5 years overdue. If he is still lobbying to be a candidate in this upcoming general elections, he will be another one of those hypocritical politician which only deserve our contempt.

Nazri firm on quitting politics

KUALA LUMPUR: If things go according to Datuk Seri Mohamed Nazri Abdul Aziz’s plans four years from now, he will be on board the legendary Orient Express train, somewhere between France and Siberia.

The trip is on the top of the list of things that the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department wants to do after his targeted retirement age of 54.

“I can’t imagine myself a minister till I am very old,” he said when interviewed on Thursday, reaffirming his wish to serve his last term in the government and Umno after being active in politics for 26 years.

Asked when he started feeling that he wanted to quit, Nazri, who turned 50 on May 12, said: “It’s something about turning 50. If I retire when my term ends, I will be 54 and that is just nice. There is life after politics.”

Nazri, who used to practise law between 1978 and 1995, said his decision was not because he felt sidelined by the leadership.

“It is more because I have been in politics for too long and missed out on things I enjoyed doing and spending time with family,” he said.

“But foremostly, I want to pave the way for younger leaders. For it (Umno) to be strong there must be rejuvenation and there comes a time when you yourself have to ensure this happens.

“There are many people who have held their posts for a long time and I am one of them who are dispensable,” he added.

Nazri, however, stressed that he was speaking on his role and not about other leaders. He said his decision to give way to other capable people was in line with the reforms that Abdullah was implementing.

The minister started his political career as an Umno executive council member, soon after his return from Britain in 1978 where he had read law at Lincoln’s Inn.

He was appointed to the Dewan Negara in 1991 and served as a senator until 1995. After winning his Parliament seat, he was made Deputy Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (1995-1999).

In 1999, he was appointed Deputy Finance Minister II and later promoted to Entrepreneur Development Minister, a post he kept until the last general election in March.

After the election, he was given his present post as minister in charge of parliament affairs.

“When my term expires in 2009, I would have served in the Cabinet for 18 years. When the time comes and my service is no longer needed, I will go,” he said.

Asked if he would continue if the leadership wanted him to, he said: “It is my wish that this be my last term. But when you want to quit you must bear in mind there are others who can make decisions for you.”

Nazri also said he had asked to serve as the minister in charge of parliament affairs after the 1999 general election but was not given the job.

“Pak Lah (Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi) has actually given me what I wanted to do,” he said.

“The Prime Minister’s Department is a super ministry and there is no reason for any of the Ministers in the Prime Minister’s Department to feel sidelined for getting the job.”

The father of three grown-up children said he had not spoken to his family about his decision to make this his last term “because they and supporters want me to stay in politics.”

He said he wanted to retire at an age when he still felt “energetic and strong to do the things I always wanted to do.”

PM Najib should have sent Nazri Aziz away within 6 months after he assumed the premiership. But that didn’t happen. If Najib had done it then, Nazri would have found himself in Siberia by now. So for this election, we bid him farewell.

2) Nor Mohamed Yakcop

What can we say about this former Finance Minister II during Pak Lah’s reign? The current minister in charge of the Economic Planning Unit was aligned with Pak Lah and deemed as his most trusted ally in the free-wheeling of our country’s financial plunder. This much maligned politician was very much in charge of the nation’s coffers from 2004 to 2008 which gave us a few disturbing headlines back then. Can we still remember:

a) Spent half a billion ringgit on Monsoon Cup and Crystal Mosque.

b) Bought/lease a private airbus costing millions.

c) The group of advisers termed as 4th Floor boys running around creating mischief with Nor Mohamed Yakcop as the executor of those mischievous plans.

d) More than a billion ringgit was paid to compensate the cancellation of the Scenic Bridge; more than the cost of actually building it.

e) Millions of ringgit were spent to buy a yacht in Turkey.

f) Didn’t bat an eyelid when he sold MV Agusta for only €1.

g) Wang Ehsan totalling RM7 billion ringgit went to Terengganu. But had Terengganu really benefitted from it?

What added-value can we gain from Nor Mohamed Yakcop this time around? Do we really need to award him with another round of ministerial post with all those ugly track records? It is time to retire peacefully.

#anwar-ibrahim, #lim-guan-eng