ON the Covid-19 front, the news is not good. In fact, it is dismal. It looks like we are not going to see the end of this pandemic anytime soon. As such, we must now brace ourselves and be prepared for the long haul. Let us each ask ourselves, “What can we do to keep ourselves healthy and safe?”
The answer to that question is simple: Follow all SOPs, i.e, wear masks, wash hands frequently, practise physical distancing and avoid crowded places.
These are measures that are within the scope of every citizen and every resident. The costs to ourselves in following these steps are nothing compared with the costs of not following them. In fact, the alternative is unthinkable. So let’s all together resolve to solve this problem.
At a time like this, it is heartening to hear the King appeal to politicians not to plunge the nation into another round of political uncertainty.
Earlier this year, when the nation faced a political crisis with the resignation of the then prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, there was a leadership vacuum and the King acted quickly to come to a solution.
Now the nation is facing another crisis, and the King has shown that he is concerned for the rakyat. He has put the rakyat first and politics on the back-burner. And rightly so.
Similarly, political parties on both sides of the divide must consider the plight of the people first. Jostling for power must take a back seat at this moment in time. There should be a proper time for everything, and there is a proper time for politics in a parliamentary democracy.
Looking at the worsening health crisis, the people’s needs and the economy should take priority and precedence over everything else. At the moment, let us focus our attention and efforts on supporting the Health Ministry in flattening the Covid-19 infection curve. Let Health Ministry staff carry on and tackle the burgeoning pandemic problem without distractions.
The people have certain expectations of their elected representatives. The people should now convince their Members of Parliament to put politicking on hold and expend all energies on getting them out of this crisis by fixing the economy while tackling the pandemic at the same time.
There is no time to lose. And no energy to spare.
Let’s put aside politics for the time being. This is the right time to stand behind King and country to overcome the nation’s crisis. So let’s put our ambitions on hold till we overcome the pandemic.
After all, isn’t politics about finding the best solutions to the people’s problems? So let’s put our differences aside and concentrate on our commonalities.
And right now, the commonality is the need to rid ourselves of Covid-19. For everything else, let’s wait till the next general election.
TAN SRI LEE LAM THYE
Chairman, Alliance For a Safe Community