30 July 2015
As Prime Minister Najib Razak strikes back at his critics over the 1MDB scandal, questions arise as to where Malaysian politics will go from here, even as the ruling and opposition coalitions reel in their respective crises.
Malaysian politics is at an inflection point. Indeed, it is no exaggeration to say it is in a mega-crisis. Prime Minister Najib Razak has just countered his critics over the massive 1MDB scandal by sacking his vocal deputy prime minister and the Attorney-General who led a high-level probe. This latest twist has left the country bracing for a backlash of uncertainty. Yet it is not just the ruling UMNO-led Barisan Nasional (BN) government that is in trouble; the opposition coalition is also grappling with its own survival.
It is significant that both sides of the political divide are reeling from unprecedented pressure in disarray – simultaneously. What will come out of this? But it is the crisis in BN that is more critical, given the repercussions reverberating throughout the system due to UMNO’s defining role as the ruling coalition’s anchor party. The latest crisis in UMNO is equally without precedent.
… Yang Razali Kassim is Senior Fellow with the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS), Nanyang Technological University, Singapore. An earlier version appeared in The Straits Times.
RSIS / Online
Last updated on 03/08/2015