Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Pak Lah is a 'disappointment' says Ahmad Mustapha


The blogger with Ahmad Mustapha Hassan, then General Manager of Bernama. Pix recorded in 1980.



Former General Manager of Malaysia National News Agency (Bernama), Ahmad Mustapha Hassan strongly expressed his disappointment with the failed leadership of Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad (Badawi) or Pak Lah.

Ahmad Mustapha said Pak Lah had failed in his 'mending mission'. Malaysia's leading on-line news portal, malaysiakini.com, quoted Ahmad Mustapha as saying that in his book The Unmaking of Malaysia, to be launched today by former deputy prime minister Tun Musa Hitam.

Ahmad Mustapha, 71, had served as press secretary to two former prime ministers, Tun Abdul Razak and Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad (then deputy prime minister). He told malaysiakini.com that Pak Lah had to embark on a mending mission as he inherited a country with a lopsided social and economic structure. Abdullah had reverted back to Tun Razak's aim of tackling rural poverty.

"He opted to go back to Razak's original version of eradicating poverty first." Ahmad Mustapha is Mahathir's nephew.

On Pak Lah's 'mending' mission, Ahmad Mustapha said "he started off well, with catchphrases like 'work with me' but no action had been taken. Okay, we sent someone to space but what is there?

"I also thought he would spend more time in the country, particularly in rural areas. But no, he spends more time overseas," he added.

On Dr Mahathir, Ahmad Mustapha said the former prime minister was an "aloof" person and a "man in a hurry." Mahathir had disregarded rules and regulations and broke away from the pattern set by his predecessors.


10 comments:

Rocky's Bru said...

Ahmad Mustapha may have been critical of, sometimes unkind to, Mahathir in his book (I'm about halfway through but the drift about the book is clear). But the words he used to deride Mahathir could also be taken as awe. For example, Ahmad Mustapha said Mahathir did not follow rules and procedures set by his predecessors and hinted that this was bad. The way I see it, though, this describes a man who breaks away from convention to take the country and his people to another level. Blah blah blah.

But the book is a must-read. It's written in the most frank way and exposes both the bias and weaknesses, warts and all, of not just the subjects but also the author.

Kudos Ahmad Mustapha.

And Tuan Syed, muda dan hensem both of you in the pic.

Syed Imran said...

Tq Bro,

Agreed, the book is a must read.
Knowing Ahmad Mustapha and his cousin Samad Mahadi (former deputy EIC of Utusan Melayu Group), they would say boldly what they think.

One may not agree with what Ahmad Mustapha wrote, but, as Tun Musa Hitam said during the launch today that he may not agree with some of the things the author wrote but he (Ahmad Mustapha) expressed his views (based on his experiences).

Yes, muda... that was 27 years ago.

);-( Samurai said...

Pak Tuan,

Have read the book. Am wondering, tidak adakah sesuatu yang baik langsung semasa Ahmad Mustapha bersama Dr M? Mungkin ada baiknya Dr M bersikap "aloof" dengan pegawai-pegawainya. Jika tidak harus yang akan merasa diri terlalu besar dan penting dan mencanang serata pelusuk yang dialah yang bertanggungjawab menasihati PM tentang itu dan ini. Tapi sekarang kita tahu yang Dr M is his own man and he makes his own decisions. I suppose a leader has to be that - a leader. One who makes his own decision. Seperti kata Rocky "the book is a must read...exposes the bias and weaknesses...not just the subjects but also the author"

Syed Imran said...

Thank you. Agreed. It is a clear proof that Tun did not favour his relatives bearing in mind the author is his nephew. Nepotism was not the order of the day during Tun's premiership.

I do respect Ahmad Mustapha for his honest and bold stand. That could be the reason why he is not decorated with datukship or what have you by the various state governments and the federal government. Look at those serving the present leadership, nearly all of them were decorated with datukships although we can hardly count their contributions to society or the nation.

Anonymous said...

Pak Tuan,

Yang saya ketahui ada beberapa perkara berlaka antara beliau dengan Pak Tun sehingga menyebabkan "Pak Choq" terkilan, kadangkala amat sangat.

Antaranya ialah Pak Tun tidak sama sekali setuju Pak Choq kita ni jadi calon BN pada Pilihanraya Kecil Parlimen Padang Terap (tahun pun saya tidak ingat lagi, akan tetapi di sekitar lewat 1980an). Pak Tun "melarang" PB Bernama ini dengan menyatakan, mungkin beginilah... "tunjukkan bahawa anda tidak berminat untuk dipilih sebagai calon parlimen" dalam satu pertemuan empat mata antara mereka.

Keduanya apabila Pak Choq sekali lagi lagi menyerlahkan minatnya untuk bertanding sebagai ketua bahagian umno padang terap di atas tiket ketua cawangan umno seladang rebah. Tukang kempen ialah saad man, ketua biro bernama alor setar yang baru sahaja menyertai bernama dan bernasib baik di tempatkan di alor setar disebabkan pernah menjadi pecacai rejal arbee. Ya, rejal arbee... (yang kononnya garang semasa berada dalam lautan melayu di bernama akan tetapi menikus bila berhadapan dengan cina di thesun.)

Ada orang kata peratusan kemungkinan pak tun membenarkan pak choq ni jadi calon dan ketua bahagian umno ni telah merudum dengan teruk (dan mungkin hilang)apabila beliau terlihat kelibat saad man yang pernah seketika dahulu menjadi seteru politik umno apabila pernah menjadi calon parti "kepala lembu" atau psrm menentang beliau ataupun calon bn yang lain di alor setar. Banyak org kata disebabkan saad man pak choq tidak dapat jadi calon.

Saad yang mirip2 rupa lenin komunis ni hari ini berniaga laksa perlis di lorong yang berhadapan dengan kota raya kl. sebagai wartawan beliau gagal dengan teruknya dan kemasukannya ke dalam bernama adalah di atas kenangan silam beliau dengan rejal. sebagai politukus pun saad gagal dengan teruk.

Mengenai Ahmad Mustapha yang saya gelarkan Pak Choq adalah seorang yang baik dan merupakan pengurus besar bernama yang paling baik pernah bertugas di agensi itu. Memang adik beradik rapat memanggilnya Pak Choq. Kalangan yang rapat mengetahui bahawa Pak Choq adalah satu-satunya anak menakan Pak Tun yang boleh berdebat dan berbincang mata ke mata dengan beliau. Disebut sebagai anak menakan yang paling kritikal terhadap Pak Tun, beliau juga adalah anak menakan yang paling disayangi oleh pak tun.

Yang saya ketahui, Pak CHoq telah 3kali menolak tawaran untuk diberikan darjah dato, termasuklah daripada kerajaan kedah.

Anonymous said...

Hi Syed Imran,
Is the book already available at our bookstores? RM$$??
A book written by his own nephew and it's not all glory of the Old Man. Wow.
Mubin

zorro said...

Tuan Syed, I had as audience-companion two former students, Zariman and Terrence Netto, at the book launch. I have yet to read the book, promised me by Zariman some moons ago.(Zariman, if I dont get it tonight at NPC, you will go to detention class and banned from NPC for a period of 2 days). Not having read the book I hold my comments for the present. However I was interested in what Tun Musa Hitam had to say. Amongst other things he commented about how future MP should be selected. They must fulfill this criterior? "CAN HE BE TRUSTED." To me, in this time we live in, this is spot on. But like all politicians, current and retired, Tun was evasive when I asked him at the unscheduled press conference, what was his take on Nov 10's Yellow Wave. He pointed to an Channel News Asia journalist and said, "ask her". She, heavily pregnant gave a wink that could be interpreted as "he took a stance of measured neutrality." He can't. Not him. Not now. What has he got to lose that he already lost long long time ago. Excuse a 67 year old man's mumblings. Cheers Tuan, I always enjoy your posts.

Syed Imran said...

A humble thank you from one 'old' Xaverian to another.

Sajad Hussein said...

Hai Pak Syed, this is you old buddy from Bernama- Sajad Hussein- your posts are interesting. keep it up man. Inshallah will join you soon as a blogger!!!

Syed Imran said...

Bro Sajad, as the saying goes ... birds of a feather flock together, you are most welcome!