OPPOSITION Members of Parliament are taking full advantage of the Health Ministry’s results of the current risk assessment which led to the postponement of the special parliamentary sitting on Monday (Aug 2). They turned up at Parliament despite the postponement, despite the surges in Covid-19 cases in a show of trying to put more pressure on the current government-of-the-day.
These lawmakers don’t care about the high risk of Covid-19 transmission, the deadly variants like the Delta variant, which are spreading within the community, causing the worsening of the daily cases recorded nationwide. The high number of deaths and infected cases which had breached the one million mark so far doesn’t seem to be of concern to them at all.
They simply ignored the two-week postponement and flock to Parliament because of their political interests and greed to grab power from the government-of-the-day, Perikatan Nasional, just couldn’t wait any longer - it must be achieved at all cost.
Long bitter enemies, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim seemed comfortable together, standing side-by-side while addressing the media before the march near Merdeka Square. Lest we forget, these two have continuously displayed a convoluted political relationship and enmity since the sacking of Anwar as deputy prime minister during Dr Mahathir’s Barisan Nasional regime, in 1998 over allegations of sodomy. The best of enemies seemed happy together, putting up a show of solidarity, although, in reality, they would try to outdo each other.
The Dewan Rakyat has been ordered shut for two weeks since July 29 after infected cases were detected among attendees last week. Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah’s statement that the risk assessment on the resurgence of infections in Parliament would be re-evaluated from time to time does not seem callous and insignificant, but their political goals are.
The fact that 11 suspected Covid-19 cases, five symptomatic, were detected during four out of the five-day special sitting period after the first index case emerged on July 29, is nothing compared to their vested interests to grab power from Perikatan. To the Opposition, this is what really matters. They just couldn’t sit still because they believe the government is using everything in its arsenal to keep Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin in power.
They are having a field day, demonstrating irresponsible, unpatriotic display. They surely know very well that they are creating prolonged uncertainties amid these bad, trying pandemic-induced times, but do they care?
I believe many of us by now, may harbour the same thought - that the calls for Parliament to reconvene should not have been made in the first place. Look at the situation now, the uncertainties surrounding us, the spike in cases from Parliament sitting, and so on. Who actually is responsible for all these? Will they take responsibility for what they have done and decided upon?
When Lim Guan Eng took on the microphone after Dr Mahathir and Anwar, he said “we are fighting to speak for the people, we want to go to Parliament to discuss the problems of the rakyat.”
I wonder whether he was telling the truth. The actions of Opposition MPs in Parliament during the four days in the special sitting leaves much to be desired. The August House was turned into a “zoo” with shouting matches and name-dropping became the order of the day. The altercations, with Opposition MPs, in a show of defiance and antagonism, only prove that they are not interested to discuss the people’s plight and well-being. Rather, the jostling and all are attempts to “overthrow” the serving PM and the government through whatever means they deem fit. They will bend science to achieve their political goals.
The PN government has done what it could and is still doing its best for the people and the country to emerge better and stronger from these crises. If indeed, people’s agenda is what really matters, the Opposition and various other parties, must set aside their differences right away, and focus on efforts to realize all plans and programmes, including the National Recovery Plan, for us to achieve herd immunity before year-end.
Among countries with more than one million people infected so far, Reuters reported that Malaysia is currently vaccinating faster than any other, administering a daily average of 1,446 doses per 100,000 people in the past seven days. What an outstanding feat but we must do more. And that calls for genuine effort and cooperation from all quarters, including the Opposition.
Stop stirring up anger and restlessness among the people. We have nothing to lose but everything to gain if we are together, for the sake of continued peace, harmony and stability.
Hamzah Zakaria,Ampang, Selangor