I refer to Deputy Minister Ahmad Maslan’s statement on 12.3.12 that Datin Seri Dr.Wan Azizah Wan Ismail should have quit as Keadilan president when her husband Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim was convicted in 1999. This statement exposes UMNO’s complete dishonesty and hypocrisy. It is well known that Anwar Ibrahim was convicted as a result of an Umno-led criminal plot involving then prime minister Dr Mahathir, the police, Attorney General and a compliant judiciary. Anwar’s convictions were greeted with shock and disbelief by Malaysians, and worldwide condemnation. Despite this Umno leaders like Ahmad Maslan continue to pretend that the convictions were properly and fairly obtained. Why should Wan Azizah quit her post when she and her family were the victims of Umno’s lawlessness and Machiavellian style of politics? On the contrary, she had a duty as a political leader to stay at her post and continue to fight for reform, justice and freedom. This she did with courage and dignity, against immense odds. It is simply absurd to compare Wan Azizah’s position with Shahrizat and her family,who are guilty of misappropriating and misusing RM250 millions in public funds.
It was increasing pressure from the political opposition that forced Shahrizat to announce that she is giving up her ministerial position next month. It was not a voluntary act. It is thus plainly deceitful for Ahmad Maslan, Muhyiddin and other UMNO leaders to now claim that Shahrizat has ‘sacrificed’ herself and that she acted magnanimously. In fact, Umno and BN leaders have no tradition of taking responsibility for their misdeeds by resigning their positions. Protected by extensive police powers, a controlled media and a timid judiciary, BN leaders have never seen the need to adhere to principles of public accountability and good governance. Ahmad Maslan’s statement is thus a fine example of UMNO’s essential and deep-rooted duplicity.