Sometimes being too pessimistic can be toxic to the heart and soul of the people. However, seeing how history has a knack of repeating itself, should we take this to our advantage and learn from it?
The 14th General Election (GE14) proved that overthrowing a single longtime running political party is doable with a lot of patience and unity from the citizens.
I mean, Barisan Nasional (BN) was the longest running political coalition and is also the very first government to rule Malaysia since independence after all.
But Pakatan Harapan took over and Malaysians are awaiting on the 7th Prime Minister, Tun Dr Mahatir, and the new government to fulfil the promises made. The 1MDB probe is sailing well but there’s more evil to undo.
It was a similar case for our neighbours, Indonesia, Myanmar and the Philippines but with a twisted ending…
Muhammad Suharto was in office for 31 years when he finally resigned in 1998 due to economic and political unrest throughout the country.
Unfortunately, the current government ruled by President Joko Widodo failed to implement policy initiatives according to the Humans Rights Watch in 2017. And this was after he declared support for human rights.
Due to this, religious minorities are still being suppressed by authorities – continuously being arrested and prosecuted under laws which should not apply to them.
The 2007 Saffron Revolution was named after the saffron-coloured robes adorned by Buddhist monks who actively protested against the government which was run by Tatmadaw, the armed forces of Burma.
Along with students and political activists, the protesters were able to overthrow the militants in 2011, allowing a democratic government to rule.
But things weren’t going well. Ethnic cleansing against the Rohingyas started in late 2016 and has continued up until today. Thousands of Rohingyas were forced to flee the country as refugees into neighbouring ones such as Bangladesh.
Between 1965 and 1986, the late Ferdinand Marcos dictated the country. But just two weeks after winning the 1986 election, two million Filipinos marched in protest against the dictatorship.
The Marcos family ran to the United States and the opposition came to power.
For many years, the country progressed towards democracy but the effort was all in vain when President Rodrigo Duterte went into office in 2016.
In his war against drugs, he has taken 12,000 lives of his own citizens!
He personally urged people to heartlessly murder petty crime committers or anyone suspected of using drugs.
Seeing as how our neighbours have regressed as such, it is scary to think what is to come for our future.
However, one thing which we’ve done differently from these countries is that we took down the long-ruling BN using the proper and most peaceful way; voting them out of office.
Though the biggest ‘chaos’ we’ve had recently would probably be the Bersih 2.0 rally (which riots were instigated by non-supporters of the movement, by the way), Malaysia has had a very peaceful overthrowing of a government.
We should probably take this chance to further reflect on the course which Pakatan Harapan is leading us into. Things are going well but we must make sure we maintain this positive way of doing things.