Barely a few hours after Pakatan Rakyat unleashed its GE13 manifesto on Monday, a slew of netizens across the social media platforms began to question Pakatan’s proficiency in political, social and economic manoeuvring.
This was not a surprise. After all, Pakatan’s predilection towards populism has recently been the subject of criticism from both sides of the political divide. Questioning and grilling the opposition coalition is no longer exclusive to BN politicians and supporters, it seems. The neutrals and the progressive left too are having a field day with this, as well as NGOs and academicians.
In a nutshell, the Pakatan Rakyat manifesto launched last Monday reeked of the same stench from their previous offerings - populist, lacking details and highly unaffordable. It is not a pledge that can guarantee the well being of the people. Implementing even half of the promises will bankrupt the country, observers said. It is what it is: a tool to gain popularity among voters. A tool to win votes, no matter what the cost will be.
Implementing the manifesto will prove to be Pakatan’s biggest ever hurdle, should they capture Putrajaya. This is highly unlikely. The opposition’s mediocre and poor track record shows that Pakatan is only made up of sweet-talking politicians who would have no idea on how to fulfil their promises. What they carry with them are just hatred and vendetta, with no real plans to bring the country forward. Those not familiar with Pakatan’s history will find the manifesto attractive. For most Malaysians however, it is just another lip service that could never become reality. Pakatan did not describe in detail on how the allocations and promises would be fulfilled. When asked by journalists, de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim could only muster what he normally does: distract the questions and begin to scream leakage, corruption and extravagance. It is his standard script for every question.
Face it; Pakatan is a coalition with no accurate answers. Heck, even this close to GE13, the three parties that make up Pakatan are still squabbling over recurring issues, over seat allocation, and over who will become PM should they, God forbid, win the election this time around. How are we supposed to trust these politicians with the responsibility to take this country forward? Selangor Menteri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim has boasted that a manifesto is NOT a promise; hence they have no binding responsibility to fulfil them. Res ipsa loquitur. I echo the calls made by many others before me: Pakatan should really revisit its GE12 manifesto before coming up with a new one, as it hasn’t fulfilled 80% of its old promises. If they’ve fulfilled their GE12 manifesto, why on Earth would they recycle it in the new manifesto?