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Abdullah could not choose a worse time to broach his Vision 2057 for the nation to achieve the unimaginable when Malaysians are increasingly concerned that Vision 2020 is not only out of reach, he has also reneged on his 2004 general election promises

Media Statement        
by Lim Kit Siang  

(Parliament, Friday): The Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi could not have chosen a worse time to broach his Vision 2057 for the nation to achieve the unimaginable, when what is imaginable seems beyond the grasp of the Abdullah premiership. 

Abdullah is suffering from a grave denial syndrome if he is not aware that Malaysians are increasingly concerned that under his leadership, Vision 2020 is not only out of reach, he has also reneged on his 2004 general election promises to lead a clean, efficient, incorruptible, transparent, progressive, just and people-oriented administration prepared to hear the truth from the people. 

This is the Vision 2057 that Abdullah painted last night: 

“A hundred years of Merdeka would see this society, this nation achieve the unimaginable. We will have Nobel laureates, truly global corporations, respected and market-leading brands, internationally acclaimed poets and artists, among the largest number of scientific patents in the world and even the best football team in Asia. 

“Our students and professors will dominate Ivy League universities and our own universities will be citadels of excellence for international scholars. 

“We will be pioneers in alternative energy, drawing on our strength in biofuels. Our cities will be the most liveable on the globe, blending cosmopolitan facilities that are rooted in a tolerant and just societal ethos. 

“This is the Malaysia in my dreams for 2057. One hundred years of independence, one hundred years of advancement.”

Abdullah has been badly served by his advisers, who do not seem to realize that the Prime Minister is stretching to the limit  the credulity of Malaysians to paint a visionary picture of Malaysia in 2057 when things in more and more fronts seem to be falling apart, best illustrated by the nation’s failure in the past 44 months to make the transition from “First-World Infrastructure, Third-World Mentality” to “First-World Infrastructure, First-World Mentality” or to prevent backsliding to “Third-World Infrastructure, Fourth-rate Mentality, nine-rate Maintenance”. 

Yesterday, Abdullah let down Malaysians for more reasons than one. 

Firstly, he disappointed Malaysians who had expected him to honour his public announcement two weeks ago that a new government delivery system would be launched and implemented yesterday.  

Addressing Kuala Lumpur City Hall officials during a one-day tour of the Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur on Friday, 1st June, 2007, Abdullah said he had instructed the National Physical Planning Committee attended by all Mentris Besar, Chief Ministers and several Ministers in Putrajaya two days earlier “to ensure that the government machinery is prepared to implement the new government delivery system in 13 days”, i.e. on June 14 yesterday. 

The Prime Minister said: 

"I hope the ministers will follow up on this matter. This is important as we only have 13 days to go. We want them to monitor the state of preparedness to carry out the new government delivery system.

"We want them to call up department heads to make sure that everything is in place for the implementation."

Abdullah said that it was necessary to ensure there were no glitches that could frustrate the people who harboured high hopes following the government’s announcement two months ago that the delivery system would be improved. 

Where is this new public service delivery system which Abdullah promised two weeks ago?

Secondly, Abdullah shocked Malaysians with his response to the United States Government listing of Malaysia among the human trafficking offenders, saying that the government had drafted a Bill on human trafficking that would impose severe penalties on the perpetrators of the crime and that he hoped that the Bill would be passed in the forthcoming meeting of Parliament beginning on Monday.

In actual fact, the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Bill was passed by the Dewan Rakyat on May 9, and among the MPs who took part in the debate were DAP MPs Dr. Tan Seng Giaw (Kepong), M. Kulasegeran (Ipoh Barat), Fong Po Kuan (Batu Gajah) and Teresa Kok (Seputeh). The Bill was passed by the Senate on May 24.

How could the Prime Minister be so misinformed as to make a faux pax as to publicly state that the Bill has yet to be sent to Parliament for passage? 

Although the Prime Minister’s mistake was corrected by the mainstream media in the newspapers today, the error had been carried worldwide by international news wires yesterday and reported by the media in foreign countries.

Thirdly, it was also reported yesterday  that the Prime Minister will be making a nine-day official visit to Russia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Italy starting next Monday.

This is most shocking as Monday is the reconvening of Parliament. Shouldn’t the Prime Minister be setting a better example to the Cabinet Ministers about giving priority attention to their parliamentary duties instead of escaping from their parliamentary responsibilities by going overseas?  Where is all the talk and commitment to have a “First-World Parliament”?

Fourthly, why the complete silence and inaction from Abdullah, who is also the Internal Security Minister, about the horrendous reports of crime and lawlessness in the country, particularly in Johore Baru – creating fear and alarm among Malaysians, visitors and investors that the Police have lost control of the crime situation despite the recent RM8 billion civil service salary revision where the police are given an additional 20% increase?


* Lim Kit Siang, Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman

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