Where is democracy if we don’t follow the rules?

Malaysia is a democracy where the people should decide on the government. (Reuters pic)

By TK Chua

Looking at the events unfolding each day in the run-up to the general election, I wonder what kind of country Malaysians will end up with.

Democracy is about seeking power through rules. If we don’t follow the rules, there is no democracy. It is only the law of the jungle and raw power.

Already, supporters of different political parties are engaging in altercations and fights. But can we blame them for this?

The rules must be fairly and judiciously applied, otherwise it is better not to have them.

Unfairness and injustice are painful things. When people see the gross defilement of fairness and justice, they get agitated. When people see the gross violation of rules, they lose hope. They can’t see how rules will continue to protect them if they behave.

We Malaysians must maintain that we are a progressive democracy even if bankrupt politicians or their political parties choose to tell us otherwise. We are not a guided democracy, a dictatorship or a theocracy. The people will decide on the government, period – no ifs and buts.

We have every right to feel outraged. In the past, violation of rules was usually done covertly. Now, it is done openly without shame or having to face the consequences. Just look at the money being thrown around or promised. Just look at the arbitrariness with which decisions were made.

It is a big slap to all of us. Seriously, if we fail to stop the rot now, it will be even more difficult next time.

There must be consequences for those who choose to violate the rules and rob us of our democratic rights. They cannot be allowed to get away with it.

I guess anyone with some intelligence would know who the abusive ones are, who have perpetrated injustice, and who have tried to corrupt the people. All of us must feel outraged enough to completely obliterate them.

TK Chua is an FMT reader.

The views expressed are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of FMT.