A free-for-all crossovers on both sides of the divide is looming in Malaysian politics

FIVE Bersatu MPs have crossed over to support the Madani government leadership of Prime Minister (PM) Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

I am sure that Anwar had discarded his lofty and mighty principles to accept these “frogs” from Bersatu, the component party of Perikatan Nasional (PN). These MPs crossed over to support the government ostensibly on the grounds that they were denied development or constituency funds while they were in opposition. 

Of course, it does not take rocket science to fathom that that the crossovers could be expedited by promise of lucrative posts and not to mention of attractive financial inducements much more than the meagre development funds.

Anwar must relish the thought that he had the support of 152 MPs in Parliament, ensuring his relevance and the government’s political longevity. 

Anwar’s silence on the crossovers makes a mockery of the much-fought-for anti-hopping law.

If not for this law, there doubts that Anwar would have formed the unity government in the first place. Yet politicians like Anwar never learn their lessons.

 If the crossovers benefit his government, they are welcomed. But not the other way around.

Moreover, the crossovers of the five MPs from Bersatu but not their resignations might not be the final episode. There are further talks that more Bersatu MPs might join the five soon. Apparently, behind-the-scenes negotiations are in progress.

Simultaneously, it is also rumoured that about 15 MPs from PKR and UMNO might be crossing over to the side of the PN.

This might not be just rumours considering that Bersatu MPs switch of loyalty to the government had provided a way of the present straight jacket of the anti-hopping law.

It might be a matter of time before other MPs on both sides of the political divide think of switching political camps. It is utter disgrace on the part of the unity government to welcome the “frogs” from Bersatu.

A reliable source is of the opinion that it is too early to have a final say on the recent crossovers. Some of them who switched camps might be Trojan horses—to destabilise the government from within.

Superficially, Anwar might relish the thought that he has a safe majority in the government.

But then government stability is not just dependent on the numbers but also on a gamut of issues.

 Anwar might be a PM for one year, some say, it is too early to judge him, give him some time.

 However, his detractors say that if Anwar cannot do it in one year, what hope is there for the future?

As it is the economy is not in good shape, the public sector has become sluggish, the Malays have lost hope in the government and the non-Malays are beginning to realise that Anwar might not be the PM that they hoped for. 

The crossovers have come at a time when there is problem of legitimacy with the government. There is incongruence between what Anwar says to the outside world and to Malaysians. Malaysians are disappointed.

Political crossovers is the last thing that Anwar needs to strength the legitimacy of his government. – Dec 2, 2023



Former DAP stalwart and Penang chief minister II Prof Ramasamy Palanisamy is chairman of the Urimai Interim Council.

The views expressed are solely of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Focus Malaysia.

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