LIGHTNING does strike twice. That’s how Datuk Seri Mukhriz Mahathir found out in the just concluded political saga in Kedah.
He has failed to complete the full term as mentri besar again.
This time, the tenure was even shorter, compared to the first where he served for almost three years from 2013 to 2016.
And both times, yours truly was there to witness his downfall. Everything seemed so familiar.
Together with other newsmen, we camped out at Wisma Darul Aman and checked on elected representatives who went in and out of the place, hoping they could divulge some details on the fast changing political development.
Muslim pressmen also adhered to their religious obligation to fast during Ramadan while giving the latest updates to their readers.
All these were done under intense pressure that lasted for days.
Getting information was difficult as many elected representatives remained tight-lipped over the issue.
Earlier last week, when PKR assemblymen Azman Nasrudin (Lunas) and Dr Robert Ling Kui Ee (Sidam) quit the party and threw their support behind the Perikatan Nasional government, I knew it was the end for Mukhriz.
I told my family that I might be away from home for a few days or even weeks, depending on the outcome of the political development.
But thankfully, the episode didn’t last long.
For newly appointed Mentri Besar Muhammad Sanusi Md Nor, he has a tough job ahead, especially when the state’s economy has taken some beating in view of the Covid-19 outbreak.
Pensioner Idris Mat, 55, told me that Kedahans have seen enough of unproductive politicking.
While congratulating Sanusi on his appointment, Idris hoped that after the Hari Raya Aidilfitri celebration, the new Perikatan government would get down to serious work.
“The people need food on the table, not political rhetoric.
“Whoever becomes the government of the day, please prove your worth, ” said the old friend of mine soon after the swearing-in of the new mentri besar.
Environmentalist Mohd Sobri Ramlee, from Sik, is calling for the new leadership to keep a close watch on illegal logging activities in the state.
As pointed out by former Water, Land and Natural Resources Minister Dr Xavier Jayakumar in 2018, the Ulu Muda forest reserve in Kedah was experiencing deforestation at a rapid rate.
Sobri said there must be a sustainable way to ensure the environment is protected, and that the new government must have the political will to safeguard Mother Nature.
“There should also be a focus on agro-tourism in Kedah as well. It will be a win-win situation for both its people and the environment, ” said Sobri.
In a few days’ time, Muslims around the world will celebrate Hari Raya Aidilfitri to mark the end of a month of fasting.
Let’s not forget that we are still not out of danger from the Covid-19 disease.
Maintaining social distancing and personal hygiene are keys in our fight against the deadly virus.
For our loved ones who are no longer with us, let us pray for their souls and also for our comfort.
To you I say, Selamat Hari Raya Aidilfitri, maaf zahir dan batin.
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