Was the opposition to BN-Umno rule, which led to the change in government in 2018, about corruption, ethnic baiting and deteriorating socio-economic conditions, and a loss of confidence in Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s administration? Well, those are, in any case, the main points raised by analysts who have been studying the surprising turn of events since the general election.
At a superficial and immediate level, they are largely correct. But the long-term cultural dilemma that Malaysia faces runs deeper than that. As thinking over reforms now takes hold in all segments of Malaysian society, accompanied by the expected cynicism, the suspicion grows that the country’s weakness is really a politico-cultural one.
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