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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Poll Position: Defining 2012

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A couple of weeks ago, Walski posted a poll asking you folks what event you thought would define 2012. Well, the results are in.

Frankly, at first the poll results surprised Walski a tad. Not a lot, just a little bit. He’d have thought that the 901 verdict would have been selected by more people.

After thinking about it some, he thinks there are a few reasons why most people didn’t select that event as potentially the most defining moment for 2012.
(poll analysis, and more, in the full post)

First off, the poll was released before the verdict announcement and stayed open until after. Walski reckons the results would have been different if the verdict had not been in Anwar’s favor.

Image from Free Malaysia Today, hosting by PhotobucketBut the fact that more people didn’t see 901 as being the most important defining moment for 2012 also indicates that not very many people buy into Najib and BN’s proclamation that 901 vindicates the Malaysian judiciary.

Based on what was presented during the trial, there were areas of doubt raised by the defense. And so the outcome would have been a no-brainer – the were reasonable doubts to the accusation of sodomy. Of course, this is Malaysia, where justice is in the eye of the beholder, and what would normally be a natural outcome may sometimes not be.

Still, it is good to know that our judicial system is still able to make difficult but credible decisions. A guilty verdict would have had all kinds of worm cans opening up.

Slightly more than a third of the poll respondents (36%) felt that General Elections 13 (GE13) will be something that would define the year. Without a doubt, regardless of the result, it would be important. But will GE13 happen this year?

Earlier, the speculation was that GE13 could happen as early as March this year. However, last week, PM Najib indicated that the time is not right for calling the next polls.

And that comes as no surprise, since what most of the poll respondents thought would define 2012 was that more BN-related scandals would be uncovered.

We are, of course, in the thick of the NFC scandal, involving the family of Datuk Seri Shahrizat Abdul Jalil, Minister of Women, Family and Community Development.  First it was condos for cows, and now allegations of funds being used to pay off the minister’s family credit card debts.

In other scandalous news, there have also been allegations that zakat (tithe) money has been misused by the religious authorities under BN control.

So, are there more scandals to come undone and uncovered? We’ll just have to wait it out, and see. No one – except those involved – knows what skeletons lurk in the closets of power, nor do we know when these skeletons will feel like coming out for a whiff of fresh air.

But it’s only January, and it’s early days yet for 2012. Whatever event, or series of events, that define the year, Walski sincerely hopes that it will be something positive, taking us closer to a better Malaysia…