Panelist For ‘Should Malaysia Wait Until November For Transition?’ Forum

I was one of the panelist for the ‘Should Malaysia Wait Until November For Transition?’ forum moderated by Jenny Hiew, with other panelists including YB Chang Lih Kang, YB William Leong, Prof Dr Tajuddin Rasdi and YB Wong Chen.

NIK NAZMI – REALITY AND COMPROMISES OF MALAYSIAN RACE-BASED POLITICS

'Malaysia made history when we had the peaceful transition the first time we changed governments in May 2018. Let's make history again to heal the two decade rift by a transition from Dr Mahathir Mohamad to Anwar Ibrahim in May 2020.' Full video of my speech at Should Malaysia wait until November for Transition. Video credit to TalkedaboutTV Youtube channel.

Posted by Nik Nazmi on Tuesday, 14 January 2020

Live Forum:Should Malaysia wait until November for Transition?

Posted by William Leong 梁自坚 on Monday, 13 January 2020

The Appointment Of The 21st Chief Of Defence Forces

I would like to congratulate General Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Haji Affendi Buang on his appointment as the 21st Chief of the Defence Forces of the Malaysian Armed Forces.

The new appointment is undoubtedly historic given that he is the first son of Sarawak to hold this post and only the second Chief of Air Force to do so.

I would also like to thank the outgoing CDF, General Tan Sri Dato’ Seri Panglima Haji Zulkifli Zainal Abidin for his 41 years of service to the nation.

I am confident that the MAF will continue to go from strength to strength under its new leadership.

NIK NAZMI NIK AHMAD
Chair, Special Select Committee on Defence and Home Affairs
Setiawangsa Member of Parliament

Responding To Merdeka Center Polls On Anwar Ibrahim’s Popularity

I read the news that Merdeka Center claims that Anwar Ibrahim’s support among the Malay community is low.

Indeed, polling is an unexact science. I used to trust Merdeka Center – in fact I appointed them to survey Seri Setia and an early survey in Setiawangsa previously.

But this industry needs credibility and independence. The credibility of Merdeka Center was compromised during GE14 as they played a role to advocate the idea that BN can only be defeated through a PH-PAS collaboration. In fact, one of the reasons BN lost was the existence of three-cornered fights.

As late as January 2018, Merdeka Center was still insisting that BN would obtain a two-thirds majority due to three-cornered fights!

In March 2018, INVOKE predicted PH would obtain more seats in Peninsular Malaysia compared to BN.

INVOKE was widely ridiculed. But INVOKE’s prediction was the most accurate of all.

I recorded this in my book ‘9 May 2018: Notes from the Frontline’.

The full book is available here: https://www.gerakbudaya.com/9-may-2018-notes-from-the-frontline.

‘On 7 May 2018, INVOKE released its final survey, that boldly predicted a Pakatan Harapan victory. Pakatan Harapan would win 111 Parliamentary seats in Peninsular Malaysia while Barisan Nasional would win 54 seats.

Pakatan Harapan was ahead in support among Malay voters in Penang, Selangor and Kuala Lumpur, but Barisan Nasional had a slim lead in the other states. In the 2013 election, Barisan Nasional had enjoyed a 30-per cent differential over Pakatan Rakyat among Malay voters; this time no state recorded more than a 20-per cent lead for Barisan Nasional.

As Pakatan Harapan enjoyed strong support from the non-Malays, this would enable the coalition to do well in mixed-seats across the Peninsula.

The only glaring misses for INVOKE were Kelantan and Terengganu. It had predicted that the two states would be won by Barisan Nasional but instead were won by PAS.

Rafizi explained after the election:

“Even in the case of Kelantan and Terengganu, it was obvious that fence-sitters resorted to tactical voting in the last week of campaigning; throwing their support behind PAS (instead of Pakatan Harapan) because realistically speaking only PAS was strong enough (as the second party in Kelantan and Terengganu) to defeat Barisan Nasional in those states.

Likewise, the voters knew enough about which party was the strongest to defeat Barisan Nasional in a three-cornered fight elsewhere, that there was a widespread tactical voting (especially among the Malays) throughout the country.”

INVOKE’s optimistic surveys contrasted with other agencies. Barisan Nasional’s private polling was on the other end of the spectrum, having placed them within a few seats of regaining the two-thirds majority in Parliament that had been lost since 2008. This explains the disbelief and paralysis that characterised the response to their election defeat. University academicians prominent in the mainstream media predicted an easy win for Najib Razak and Barisan Nasional.

In January 2018, Merdeka Center announced that Barisan Nasional would win the general election and re-gain the two-thirds majority in Parliament due to three-cornered fights, the redelineation of boundaries and the fractious nature of the Opposition.

‘The opposition’s prospects range from slim to zero as PAS leaders appear keen to prevent a PH victory. PAS seems ready to assist UMNO on the grounds of preserving Malay political hegemony.’

The polling outfit maintained their prediction in April. In their final poll presented on the eve of the election, they recorded the decline in Malay support for Barisan Nasional but concluded it was insufficient for Pakatan Harapan to win Federal power as the lead among Malay voters was still substantial for the ruling coalition.

They forecasted 100 safe seats for Barisan Nasional, 83 for Pakatan Harapan, two for PAS and 37 seats where the margin of error was within three per cent. This included my Setiawangsa Parliamentary seat.’

The Government Should Look Into The Living Wage Recommended By Bank Negara

Yesterday I explained why the concerns of the employers who are not satisfied by the new RM1,200 minimum wage in the cities are baseless.

But the government should also consider the living wage that was proposed by Bank Negara in line with developed economies across the world.

I have raised this in Parliament before. The fact is that the minimum wage and living wage are different.

The minimum wage, which is the statutory minimum, of RM1,200 is far lower than the living wage. The living wage is not mandatory in nature, but can be introduced through incentives and encouragements.

According to the 2017 Bank Negara Annual Report, the living wage for an individual in Kuala Lumpur was RM2,700, while a household with two children would require RM 6,500.

The living wage goes beyond securing necessities such as food and shelter, but also affords social participation and financial security.

In 2016, nearly 50% of working adults in Kuala Lumpur earned less than RM2,500 per month, and up to 27% of households earned below the estimated living wage.

IDEAS Malaysia a think-tank known for its free market ideas that are frequently referred by major corporations, have also proposed a living wage policy through tax credits.

If IDEAS itself has proposed this, it is clear that the concept that Malaysians need higher wages should no longer be controversial, but accepted in order to drive our economy forward.

The government should look at the relevant sectors as well as incentives in order to introduce a living wage in stages through consultation with government agencies, employers and employees.

NIK NAZMI NIK AHMAD
KEADILAN Chief Organising Secretary
KEADILAN Central Leadership Council Member
Setiawangsa Member of Parliament