Tahrir Square during the 2011 Egyptian Revolution | Source: http://rameshsrinivasan.org

There are lesson to be learned from history. Pepper gives a warning about being too busy working without taking time to ensure that the work is on track to meet its goal.

Dear Paprika,

I have always known I would get praise as well as criticism for my articles published on LoyarBurok. I do not like answering the critics directly, but instead hope that they will write a proper article to refute my writings. Then, I will be able to see my critics’ thoughts in their entirety.

My last letter to you about BERSIH 4 has attracted some criticism. Uncle Ren Ching and Uncle Shanmuga (LB: Uncle Shanmuga is one of Lord Bobo’s most loyal minions, and we hope he will take Pepper’s advice and write a proper article so we can all read his views) have pointed out some things I seem to have misunderstood. For example, the call for PM Najib’s resignation is due to his alleged use of funds from 1MDB to run his elections machinery during GE13, which is against the law. Thus BERSIH, in the interest of free and fair elections, is calling for him to step down.

However, when I tried to check the validity of that claim, I could not find any concrete proof of the allegation. Investigations are ongoing as I write this to you. Sure, 1MDB stinks of corruption, misuse of public money, and political shenanigans, but do we really want to go with just “I think”, “could have” and “maybe”?

To understand further why I have my doubts about BERSIH 4, I am going to tell you the story of the Arab Spring that happened in Egypt a few years ago.

Tahrir Square during the 2011 Egyptian Revolution | Source: http://rameshsrinivasan.org

In 2011, 300,000 protesters occupied Tahrir Square in Cairo demanding their prime minister, Hosni Mubarak, to step down. This tyrant and his family stole millions, if not billions, from the Egyptian people. They lived in luxury while the average Egyptian struggled to make ends meet.

The opposition parties in Egypt helped by supporting the protest, mobilising their party members to stand with the people. The Egyptians stood their ground despite being beaten by gangs supportive of the ruling government, dragged off by the police, intimidated by the military and much more.

In less than a month of protesting, Mubarak stepped down! At the next general elections, the Egyptian people voted in the opposition. Mohamed Morsi was the first democratically elected Egyptian president.

That’s a happy ending to the story, right? Nope.

Morsi was a lousy prime minister too. He introduced new laws that further encroached on the freedom and rights of the Egyptians! All the promises he made during his elections campaign were put aside while his party’s ideals were pushed forward.

So the people had to take to Tahrir Square again in 2013, just two years after ousting Mubarak.

Sigh. Will this fate befall us in Malaysia too?

Let’s say, BERSIH 4 achieves its aim and PM Najib Razak does resign, what then? DPM Zahid Hamidi would be the new prime minister of Malaysia. This is the person who told everyone who was unhappy with the GE13 results to migrate. He calls the banned Tiga Line gangsters his friends. As Home Minister, he worked to censor the internet including YouTube.

Do the rakyat want him as the new prime minister?

Let’s say, fresh elections are called after PM Najib steps down. Who will become the next PM? Anwar Ibrahim is in jail, remember? He cannot run for public office for another five years.

Would the rakyat accept Hadi Awang (PAS president) or Lim Guan Eng (Sec. Gen. Of DAP) or Wan Azizah (PKR president) as the new prime minister of Malaysia?

You and I know, it is virtually impossible for a Chinese or a woman to come the prime minister. So that leaves Hadi Awang.

Wait, isn’t Hadi Awang the man whom everyone was raging about because he pushed for hudud laws in Kelantan? Didn’t everyone complain about him not playing ball with DAP? Isn’t he the man who was hated because he supported Khalid Ibrahim when DAP and PKR wanted him out?

Source: irenicon.files.wordpress.com

Would the rakyat accept Azmin Ali as prime minister? He “snuck in” as menteri besar of Selangor while PKR and DAP tried to install Wan Azizah as the first female menteri besar. As far as I can see, Azmin is having a tough time filling in the big shoes left behind by Khalid Ibrahim. How would he fare as PM?

What about Razaleigh Hamzah (Ku Li)? The rakyat have talked about him being PM but do you think UMNO would let this man who holds no special position within his party to be prime minister? In any case, he has not indicated his desire to be PM in recent times.

It is quite a conundrum, isn’t it?

Dear Paprika, I want a change just like the supporters of BERSIH 4. I am tired of a corrupt government who bullies its people, mismanages the country and gerrymanders its way into power. However, I am wary of the big picture too. I want to be able to see past the end of my nose. I want to consider all angles lest we jump out of the frying pan and into the fire.

Your loving father,


Pepper is the father of two adorable children named Paprika Lim and Saffron Lim. "Dear Paprika" is a series of letters written for posterity. When Paprika is 20 years old, he will be 61. He prefers to...

15 replies on “Dear Paprika: What Could Happen After BERSIH 4”

  1. Dear Daddy,

    I understand your big picture view and I'm glad you are smart enough to see beyond step 1 of the scenario.

    I think should the current PM step down (which he won't), there will not be a new election. There will be a fight between The ex DPM and the current DPM to replace him.

    The fight will weaken BN further until it implodes and the current opposition will have a better chance during GE 14.

    Should the opposition ever win GE 14, then we may very well see AI being given a pardon and eventually be coming PM.

    During the interim period, Malaysia might even have a female PM!

    Well, one can dream, can't they?

    The only chance of BN staying in power depends largely on East Malaysia.

    Should the current opposition be able to cut a deal with Sarawak, they will have a real chance in GE 14.

    In any case, Bersih 4.0 is important because only by a free and fair election a govt can be changed.

    How the authorities handle Bersih 4.0 will determine how fast the change comes.

    Hope to see you at Bersih 4.0 Daddy.



  2. You cannot fear what's to come before you try to finish the climax chapter of a horror story. You ask for democracy, you should get democracy including all its evils. If you truly like the horror story books and never want to turn the page to see what's next because you think you already know what's next then probably you should author the whole book rather than live the book. Everything comes with risk…the risk of keeping a corrupted representative (I wouldn't call the many fellas in parliament leaders, you see…mere representatives) with another corrupted rep will always be there…or a corrupted rep with a clean but weak leader is also there. If the game is to perpetuate the horror just because we think the next chapter spells worse…then we will always be stuck at chapter 1. Not much of a story to author or to live in, is there.

  3. Different political scenario to compare with Egypt. First off , there exist military in politics and military rule. Morsi hijacked the people's struggle and then turn back on them. He got what he deserved.Military forced their way back in.

  4. Najib or not Najib, BN or PR, the point is, do it in a proper channels. There's vote of confidence in the parliament, there is GE14 in a couple of year.

  5. Najib is outright lying and it is disgrace to have him as Prime Minister of Malaysia and putting such shame to country. As the process take it course to determine the person to lead Malaysia. To Mak, wake up as Najib has lost even an mg of respect and integrity to lead the country. You must be kidding to say there are not one MP that better than Najib. I am truly surprise of your suggestion, as for proposal, it it up to the new leader to present to us. To have someone worse than Najib is near impossible. Surprise of your remarks. We must move forward fast as we are very much behind in many aspects. Thanks

  6. Najib is the prime suspect in 1MDB corruption investigation but yet he is in power. All his actions had shown that there is a massive cover up. He admitted receiving the 2.6b termed as "donation" in his personal account and this clearly shows something is not right. It doesn't matter who becomes the PM next, but we are for sure that it cannot be any worse than this.

  7. Whatever it is, Najib is still the best Malaysia Prime Minister. Looking more after the rakyat and help them wherever possible. Did Tun M ever given anything to the rakyat ==== NOPE!

  8. I agree with Pepper Lim.

    My own discomfort with all this whacking of Najib: where are the proposals to reform what the PM can do?

    If those who are calling for Najib's removal don't support the curtailing of PM's powers with concrete suggestions, would the next fella not have access to the same powers and be tempted with abusing it?

  9. Hi there, my answer to your 'concerns' would be summarized as can you get someone worse than the current sitting Prime Minister. Also do you need to be a genius to see how unethical, high handed and totally absurd approach to avoid the investigation towards 1MDB and also the alleged 2.6 Billions into his personal bank account? Finally, even if all the above is not right, if this person still has 1g of love towards Malaysia, he should just step down as his departure provides us hope and hope is what we are looking for ? Don't change him equal to zero hope, change him stands for a chance ….the choice is obvious


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