|Corny Chua rindu kat rakyat ...|
|Tapi rakyat tak semestinya rindu ..|
Lynas is good news for the people that has turned bad, a simple PR (public relations) failure on the part of BN that has allowed PR (Pakatan Rakyat) to score some much-needed points. The proposed rare earth project in Gebeng near Pekan, the hometown of the Prime Minister, is fast establishing itself as one of the hottest election issues come the 13th General Election. What was conceived as a billion-dollar site to spur development in the state of Pahang has now become a potentially very bloody political battleground. It has given Anwar Ibrahim's PR, which has been facing serious credibility issues including his own faux on the security of Israel, a chance to regain lost ground.
As in the case with the National Feedlot Corporation, Lynas has become a problem to Najib Razak because the relevant irrelevant ministers had underestimated the issue and waited too long to act. The Information Minister, for example, was too busy lodging police reports and dragging bloggers in court. The statements made by the Menteri Besar of Pahang have not helped, either. Ads after boring paid ads in the papers that I doubt even the bored aides of these ministers enjoyed reading.
The real anti-Lynas crowd - the environmentalists - has long been elbowed to a corner in yet another event that has been totally hijacked by Anwar Ibrahim. Still, the crowd he could bring in was relatively small because not everyone in Pakatan buys the honesty of the party's cause. Despite the presence of political superstars - to quote activist Juana Jaafar - like Anwar Ibrahim himself and Lim Kit Siang, co-starring Khalid Ibrahim and former Health Minister Chua Jui Meng (winner of the corniest political tweet of the event), many from PR are shying away. I mean, even PR's own nuclear expert, the MP of Hulu Langat Dr Che Rosli Che Mat, has said that the Lynas plant is safe!
Despite his own nuclear expert's conclusion, Anwar said today he will close Lynas if he conquers Putrajaya. Well, we all know what happened to his 16/9 2008 promise, among many other promises he's made.
Najib, on the other hand, can't afford to make empty promises or try to be a populist. He has to assure the voters in Gebeng, and Malaysians in general, that the Lynas project is perfectly safe, just as the PAS nuclear expert says. The Prime Minister has to start pounding the Gebeng pavements to do that. He can no longer leave it to the nincompoops to do a decent job.
In the meantime, I leave you with my earlier question on Twitter today: Have our Opposition changed, really?