I may be another IgnorantCow here, but I did not spy any Election Manifesto from the MCA President Datuk Seri ONG KA TING. Or did Desi miss out on one you have spied, dear Readers. Tell me, or better point me to One On-line before midnight today? This is both a rhetorical and non-rhetorical question, depending on your reaction. This columnist has mastered the politician's art of PASSING THE BUCK!
I consulted a veteran ex-journalist-fRiend who covered the MCA beat a lot in his heydays (not the party, because I don’t remember that party having had any heyday!) if he had seen an Election Manifesto from the incumbent MCA President. I had indicated yesterday I would like to cover him and his opponent Datuk Chua Jui Meng as fairly and objectively as possible, perhaps giving a critical “outsider” look at their battle for the highest post in the second largest component within the 14-member Barisan Nasional.
I was told by this mGf that Ong only had issued a joint statement with his deputy Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy, who also faces another opponent Tan Sri Dr Ting Chew Peh, incumbent secretary-general,for the second senior post. Just for the record, note that Ting was aligned with Ong in Team A under former party president Dr Ling Liong Sik, now a Tun. Chan was in Team B, along with Chua, in Team B led by former deputy president Datuk seri Lim Ah Lek. (If Desi makes any mistake in the b….y PREFIXES fronting their names, just give him a break, okay, for updating a post like this is demanding enough trying to remain unbiased and civil, to be further taxed by all these unnecessary appendages. (Sorry if this DIGRESSING, but b…..y hell, this is Desi’s Place!;)
Back to the Manifesto – my first reaction when I learnt that the incumbent president DOES NOT HAVE A MANIFESTO (compared with his opponent CHUA JUI MENG’s, as accessible via chuajuimeng.com …), is it that Ong is just too complacent? Maybe he thinks the 2,500 odd delegates voting tomorrow all know his Vision and Plan for MCA and the Chinese Community by heart already – his vision need not be put in B&W-lah!
I had toured through Chua’s website and yesterday gave an initial verdict that his approach was indeed professional, and I highlighted some relevant extracts from the webpages. I today wished I could have similarly done with some extracts of Ong’s manifesto – there is none, so don’t put the “failing” or omission on Desiderata – I don’t wanna be playing someone’s big brother…
But I spied in today’s THE STAR page 2 the following analysis, as second lead to some "Farmers" story as lead -- the headline follows:
Ong, Chan stress teamwork as way to move forward
ANALYSIS BY WONG CHUN WAI
""**TWO hours before Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting and Datuk Seri Chan Kong Choy filed their nomination papers on Monday to cntest the top two posts in the MCA polls, the two met in a room on the ninth floor of the party headquarters.
Over a simple chap fun (economy rice) lunch, the party president and deputy checked their documents to make sure they were in order as division chief heads gathered outside the room…..**""
DESIDERATA: advises again Esteemed Readers to pay RM1.20 to read for themselves what Wong wrote. But to me as some one reading from the start it is AN ANALYSIS by a senior Editor (Wong is the paper’s Deputy Editor-inChief), the contents are a big letdown. I expected an examination of what b…..y issues or visions the two top guns have for their members as well as the (Chinese) community they both claim to represent (though I did question who gave them that mandate …).
The only relevant point I reproduce here – in reference to preparing his presidential speech to be delivered tomorrow -- was “*Ong is expected to expand on the Rakyat Malaysia concept to remind Malaysians of their multi-racial history and the need to work together to foster a united Malaysian spirit to compete effectively on the global stage.*”
What Wong wrote was mainly on the MCA president and deputy’s country-wide visits over the past two months in the run-up to the party elections, stressing THEY WORK VERY WELL AS A TEAM, hence that headline above. Hey, we all know that, it's all over the papers as the incidents.events happened -- we do read the dailies, you know!
In my most humble opinion, a political analysis should be about Vision, Politics and Issues – National, if not national, maybe Chinese? No, there was no analysis of Ong’s and Chan’s visions versus Chua’s or Ting’s visions as expressed by the challengers’ manifestoes.
Then let a junior journalist write an UPDATE will do; so maybe I retract my advice to DiscerningReaders to invest that RM1.20 (buy me a teh tarik ...) – it’s not worth it, there’s nothing to read about the most important contest in the country’s so-called second ranking party in the ruling coalition government.
Hey, wait a second! WoW, there’s some mention at last of Chua Jui Meng! Maybe The Star feels it’s BETTER LATE THAN NEVER. It kept completely silent yesterday on Chua’s press conference to introduce his manifesto on Wednesay, So The Star gives a new definition of news today by writing thus: “…Chua, who has kept a low profile since being dropped from the Cabinet, launched his campaign for the pary presidency with an American-style manifesto, New Politics, New Vision, New MCA and a website….” And a few more inconsequential lines because it’s history by now.
Remember, double Datuk Wong Chun Wai, yesterday’s news is today’s history. Or should I add, Journalism 101, remember?
PS: I did not see any stand made by Chua or Ong on Press Freedom or Independence. Desi was just too optimistic there would be some hope. Hence, I urge again, who ever leads any government or component party within the government, plaese make a stand for AN INDEPENDENT MEDIA.
Malaysians must fight for a law that legislates against any political party's financial or political interests in any news organisation, direct or indirect, like Huaren's present substantial stakes in The Star and Nanyang Siang Pau. With a truly free press, with no substantial stakes by any party but members of the publiic or strictly corporates not beholden to politicial interest, then only will we see some semblance of balanced, responsible and fair reporting, and commentary, on the news scene, especially pertaining to politics. So dear Malaysia,this is one National Day wish as the 48th Merdeka Birthday is just 12 short days away. What say thee, my EsteemedReaders?