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We want Prime Minister to Scrutinize Election Candidate List Personally – Selangor MIC Youth Chief

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Kota Raja, Klang (June,2) Selangor MIC Youth Chief  Shanker Raj Ayanger yesterday requested Prime Minister to Scrutinize Election Candidate List Personally. He also said when a political party plans for an election, the selection of its candidates is naturally an important process. As Datuk Seri Najib Razak prepares Barisan Nasional (BN) for GE13, he has made the selection of winnable candidates a key element of re-energising the governing coalition. Even though all the component party president have submitted the preferred list by their party, He said Prime Minister must personally check or appoint an independent body to check on the submitted candidates.

I would say that this terminology came about following the political tsunami of 2008 when many apparently strong candidates fielded by the Barisan Nasional, lost in Peninsular Malaysia. As a result, the BN lost five states as well as the Federal Territory of Kuala Lumpur, apart from its two-thirds majority in Parliament. And many of those who lost were beaten by unknowns fielded by the Pakatan Rakyat coalition which was reported to have problems even in getting the numbers.

Prime Minister Spoke on this in detail during his radio interview to the 988 FM station this year March, where he said he would listen to the people when choosing candidates. For example, Najib said, if the people in a constituency felt their elected representative was not doing his or her job well and they did not want this person anymore, he would choose someone else as a candidate for GE13. “It is only right as a leader. I should listen to the people. So, therefore, I will make a decision that his or her time is up and should not stand as a candidate anymore,” he said.

Prime Minister also said there would be no room for favoritism, even if this meant leaving out his own friends if they failed to perform. After all, he said, the people came first and at the end of the day he was responsible for fulfilling the people’s interests. He has already allowed some old hands to step down in favour of candidates who represent a younger generation.

At the same time Prime Minister is trying his best to correct the unfavourable public perception of the ruling party and so far, he has done well by engaging directly with young voters through his social media network. He has also gone down to the ground in his walkabouts to be with the people. He also has resolved many major issues and has left the the grassroots party leaders to deal with the other remaining problems. But still there are hurdles in his path.

Shanker also added PM’s biggest headache is getting rid of non-winnable incumbents who will not want to bow out on their own unless told to do so. The other headache for the Prime Minister is that new fresh faces being declared winnable candidates would most likely cause retaliations from incumbents who may ensure the winnable candidates don’t win by sabotaging them, and incumbents normally have good stacks of money to do that.

The Selangor MIC Youth Chief said Winnable candidates can be defined by political parties for ad hoc purposes of winning the elections. To the people, the wholesome winnable candidate is not just about the elections. Barisan Nasional party leaders have been cautioned against nominating party members they favour for the coming election at the expense of more winnable candidates who are not in their good books. Some of them follow Prime Minister and Party President all over the country because they want to “show their face”. They are hoping that PM or the party president would spot them and be noticed.

Shanker also mention what the so-called winnable candidates do after the elections also matters. Legally, the winnable candidate will be with the people and their respective constituency for the full term of 1,825 days. In five years, leaders at any level can do much good or much damage. What political parties set as winnable candidates may really not be winnable enough. There are other criteria and checklists. The leader must not be manipulative but must genuinely respect the people. The nominated person must not be uncompromisingly self-righteous with unresolved issues of relationship with others and with self. The leader must not have the inclination to be corrupt but must be an example of integrity.