Perhaps the most disturbing thing about the 1MDB/East Coast Railway/SRC and related scandals is not so much that the Prime Minister is the leading criminal in all these criminal activities but that he is a Malay and is receiving continuing support from the exclusively Malay political party he presides over, UMNO.
This has far greater implications for the country’s future than the inevitable disappearance into life imprisonment of Najib Razak. It is one thing for an individual to sully his personal reputation and commit mega crime. That the law can and should deal with. But the growing perception that his ethnicity is the reason why he is still a free man sullies the communal reputation of the Malay community.
Not just the reputation but also the so far acknowledged right of the Malays, as the majority community, to control the levers of power in Malaysia. With privilege also comes responsibility and duty. Majority rule must be both fair and seen to be fair and where blemishes are detected the majority must deal with them or fracture the compact with the rest of the electorate.
It is time for the Malay community as a whole, and its politicians in particular, to recognise the harm that this mega crook has done, and intends to continue to do, to their community and its long term interests. Do they think that foreign interference and, later, control, will stop at a railway line? China is on the move and Malaysia is in the way. They will buy you if they can as it is cheaper than other methods. But they will have you one way or the other if you let them.
Time for some careful thought and some radical cleaning before it becomes too late for either.
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