On 11th May 2008, UMNO as a political entity celebrated 62 years of history. Some would argue that this is not the case, citing that the original UMNO was disbanded in the late 80’s and if we put that into consideration, then UMNO should only celebrate its 20 year anniversary this year.
Regardless of all these arguments, the spirit and entity which is UMNO has been a political juggernaut in the Malaysian political scene since before Merdeka.
I have read and seen many research and articles on how UMNO did or did not contribute towards the struggle to Merdeka. Some go as far as to argue that UMNO+MCA+MIC were tools of the british to still maintain their grip on power in the Malay lands.
I have seen many arguments on how UMNO has been a positive or negative force for the country. My conclusion is this, without UMNO the Bumiputra and Malays will not be where we are today.
Despite all its flaws, the spirit in which UMNO was concieved and the struggle it embodies in my view is as relevant and true today as it was when the first few enlightened Malays decided to get together and do something about the plight of their people.
Political ideals are always in its truest form, good and seek to encompass and benefit all levels of society and the ideals in UMNO would have not survived this long if it was not for the benefit of all. However at this present point in time, i believe that the problem in UMNO stems from some of the people that carry its name and who we chose on our behalf to represent the organisation and not the organisation itself.
We, UMNO members as stakeholders have a responsibility socially and historically to set this right.
Everyone i think has commented to exhaustion on lately in its glorious history, there seems to be a purge in UMNO every 10 year or so. Purging, bloodletting or berbekam is good for the body, as testified by many an ancient civilisation ( the Romans, Greeks, Indians, Chinese, Arabs and Malays all do it) and its even a Sunnah ( an act favoured by the Prophet Muhammad pbuh) as it is said to clean the body of bad blood.
Come December, I sincerely believe that UMNO members will exercise their right to bloodlet some of the leadership to get rid of “bad blood” within our party.
Recently, i lament the fact that everything UMNO is seen as “dirty” and comes with all types of connotations and stereotypical remarks ( ah…you must be after contracts/favours etc) .
At the moment Malay and celebrating Malay culture is seen as offensive to others ( wearing a songkok in the Dewan Negeri is deemed to “Malay” by some DAP and they boycotted it until one of them was made Selangor speaker and wearing a keris is deemed as offensive and threatening – i wonder would they object to this at a wedding or silat festival?!!).
Now, i think its more acceptable if you are a minority and in opposition as you would be seen as oppressed and a fighter – an idea that the PR is trying to project, perhaps too much a romanticised ideal of what reality is in Malaysia!
I lament at the fact that Bumiputra and Muslims rights are eroding everyday and Bumiputra Muslim leaders especially from the opposition (where has the voice in PAS GONE!) are sitting on the sidelines for fear of going out of favour and perhaps loosing POWER!
In a world where the current reality of being a Malay Muslim means that you are a “terror” suspect everytime you travel internationally, Malaysia is the bastion of safety that we all should appreciate and defend. In essence, unity will bring us strength regardless of what the world throws at us!
Lets return to the good old days when being an UMNO member filled you with pride and being a Malay and more importantly a Muslim is something that you shouldn’t be ashamed of.
In the mean time, Al-fatihah to the leaders and warriors in UMNO whom have passed away; and may their struggle,dedication and contribution to the party be rewarded in the hereafter by Allah S.W.T.
May we move forward stronger, better and with the truest intentions in our heart.
Selamat Ulang Tahun ke- 62, Parti Kebangsaan Melayu Bersatu!