Commentary Politics

Malaysian politicians’ artful deceptions


Zaidi Azmi
Written by Zaidi Azmi

A Youth’s Take – A weekly column by Zaidi Azmi

SOME may not agree but it is highly likely that ardent followers of Malaysian politics have been lied to at some point in their life.

In fact, some politicians have uttered so many lies to the point that some claim they can’t help it. What make you wonder is how on earth they are able to get a goodnight’s sleep.

Although it goes without saying that no one likes being lied to, there’s no indication our politicians will start being 100 per cent honest anytime soon.

That being the case, it may do a lot of good for Malaysians to set aside their innate hatred towards politically-motivated deceits because once you do, you will probably see them as some funny people trying their best to amuse us.

Do that and maybe you may end up appreciating their deftly spun dishonesty because God forbid, some of these fibs are quite impressive.

Below is a list of the ways in which some politicians may have been lying to us:

Deflecting blame

This technique is no doubt an all-time staple with Malaysian politicians. Plus, a head of government from a state up north is said to be notorious for frequently pulling this stunt.

His critics claim that he can get out of anything by shifting blame onto someone or in some cases, something else.

He even blamed the monsoon rain for inundating at least 90 per cent of the state capital, conveniently forgetting the fact that the crippling flood was also due to the rampant hillside development.

Fake truth, real problem

A complicated but rewarding technique in which one makes up a lie and before or once it has been refuted, clouds the discussion about the lie with a seemingly devastating yet unrelated issue.

A case in point was when an opposition politician accused a minister of practising cronyism where the latter allegedly awarded a contract to a company headed by the minister’s brother.

His evidence? The name of their father was spelt the same way.

Not unexpectedly, the claim turned out to be false.

And when many thought that he will apologise to the minister, the politician rambled non-stop about how the haters mocking him on social media were bastardising the Malay language.


The roller-coaster of contradictions

This technique is seldom used because once foiled, the aftershocks can be catastrophic.

Like how a minister had landed in hot soup after he tried to develop a part of a public park in an affluent residential area into towering blocks of high cost apartments which he described as affordable.

This was so despite the fact that he had earlier promised the residents he will never touch the park.

But when they called his bluff, the minister went on and on about how the nine blocks of the 52-storey apartments were necessary to house 200 families squatting in nearby longhouses.

The beautiful lie

No explanation needed as this is just a plain-yet-grandeur in-your-face lie.

A minister has been heavily accused of doing this after assuring the people – on national television no less – that the price of certain goods will go down after the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax.

Boy, was he wrong.

Now that we know the next general elections will be held next year, expect even more outlandish tall tales.



About the author

Zaidi Azmi

Zaidi Azmi

If Zaidi Azmi isn’t busy finding his way in the city, this 26-year-old northern kampung boy can be found struggling to make sense of the Malaysian political scene. Zaidi can be reached at [email protected]