KUALA LUMPUR: Former finance minister Tun Daim Zainuddin said Barisan Nasional chief Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak employed the wrong strategy, which caused the losses for the party in the just-concluded general election.
Another major reason for the Barisan’s poor showing was the in-fighting in the party, Daim said in an interview with the China Press, which was carried in the blog of veteran journalist Datuk Abdul Kadir Jasin.
The interview has since been reproduced in several news portals.
Daim, a former Umno supreme council member, said Najib banked on his personal popularity to help the Barisan regain the two-thirds parliamentary majority it lost in 2008.
“This is a parliamentary election, not a presidential election.
“The PM’s advisers should be sacked. If you associate a vote for Barisan as a vote for him, then Barisan’s poorer results reflect on him too,” said Daim, adding the party was trying to fight PKR adviser Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim with even bigger crowds.
“It’s a serious business electing a government, so let’s leave this clown’s strategy alone and not play to his game,” added Daim, who also blamed the Barisan’s failure to the misallocation of resources in efforts to capture the urban and Chinese-majority seats.
“The Chinese majority areas were a goner and Barisan should not have wasted time and money on those seats but concentrated on areas they had lost by slim majorities in 2008 and strengthen the seats won in 2008.
“Too much time and money were also wasted on urban areas where the results were almost certain,” said Daim, commenting on the heavy spending on free dinners and star-studded concerts by a so-called 1Malaysia Penang Welfare Club in the weeks before polling day.
Daim said that Barisan should have focused issues close to the people’s hearts, such as corruption, good governance, security, education, inflation, urban poor and young graduates.
He attributed Barisan’s poor showing in Selangor to infighting and sabotage, saying that this was caused by the coalition picking the wrong candidates for the polls.
Barisan won 12 of the 56 state seats in Selangor, fewer than its 2008 win of 20 seats, but kept its haul of five out of 22 federal seats there.
Did you find this article insightful?