a different set of rules
by: Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah
I don’t know En. Rohaizat. He may be a fine upstanding citizen. However, his public record of dishonesty would long ago have disqualified him from being a candidate for public office in any normal political party.
Is Umno so short of people that we have to find a lawyer disbarred for financial dishonesty to stand? Has financial misconduct become so common among us that we no longer see it as a factor in a candidate’s suitability? The party leaders who select and screen candidates must have known of this impediment but considered financial misconduct a trivial matter.
Honesty is a minimal condition for public office. Whatever the other virtues of the candidate, he should not be considered if he fails this test. The candidates we field for election must have a clean record because we are asking the public to place their confidence in him as their leader, and democratic government breaks down without public confidence. We are also saying this candidate represents us. I’m sad to have to say such obvious things.
By fielding a disbarred lawyer, today’s Umno is projecting the image that it lives by a different moral code from the rest of Malaysia. One set of rules for Umno, and another for everyone else. Either that, or this is the best we can do.