Kota Kinabalu: Umno members of all ranks and levels have been urged to look into the factors which caused them to lose many seats to the opposition in the peninsula in the 12th General Elections. The call came from Assistant Finance Minister Datuk Tawfiq Abu Bakar Titingan, who said if observed carefully the great losses were mainly caused by the negative perception among the people on the party itself.
"Although not that extensive, tetapi disebabkan nila setitik maka rosak lah susu sebelangga (one rotten apple spoilt the whole basket)," he said, adding he had raised this when representing the State Umno Liaison Committee in responding to the motion of support to their President's policy speech at the just concluded Umno General Assembly.
He said this had to do with, among others, the power struggles at various leadership levels as well as too much internal politics to the extent that "we became too relaxed and took lightly our responsibilities as elected representatives. "This made the people feel like we are no longer concerned about them, while we were too happy with the positions and privileges as Umno leaders until others looked at us as if we have forgotten that we are here to serve them," he said. Now it has become the great task of every Umno and BN member of all ranks and levels to fix this and change back the people's perception, he said. "We need to look at it as a party and government that is alert and attentive to the people's needs. Every policy we formulate, we must find out whether if it is being implemented it will benefit the people or not.
"Sometimes we implement a policy which we made just from our own perspective to fulfil our own needs we never think about how the people feel and react on those policies," he said.
Citing an example he said when "we cut down the fuel subsidy too drastically, it was exploited by the opposition because the situation then did not help the people live comfortably." "This shows we were not attentive to people in rural areas and those who are using that particular facility, that's why I propose that we look at the policies we are making, although we know it is for our country's best interest.
At the same time we must be aware that the bottom line of playing politics is to win the heart of the people. Tawfiq said the success achieved by State Umno leaders in the party's election including the history made with the Vice President and Puteri Umno Chief posts now held by Sabah leaders as a great recognition to Umno Sabah which is considered as still very young.
On the disciplinary action on State Umno Youth Chief Datuk Japlin Akim, Tawfiq believed he (Japlin) would remain a strong party member and that what had happened will not lead to any split among the Youth movement in the State. Earlier in his speech Tawfiq hoped that apart from Mara there will be more institutions of higher learning being set up either by the government or privately in the State to give Sabahan students more education opportunities.
Loud and clear ....JomoSama agree with 100%.
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