Government needs to be more open to criticism

Dick Lembang Dugun

KUCHING: The government needs to be more open to criticism in the management of the Covid-19 pandemic, opines a political analyst.

Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas) lecturer Dick Lembang Dugun pointed out the inefficiency in managing the pandemic has brought upon economic and social crisis to the people.

“Something needs to be done because the enforcement of movement control order (MCO) is proving to be not effective in flattening the infection curve. This is similar to the declaration of emergency, which prevents the holding of election in the hopes of curbing infection.

“The number of positive cases and deaths continue to increase despite the MCO. Moreover, there is also a worrying increase of suicide cases in the country.

“The current situation does make one wonder where things went wrong and whether the approaches undertaken by the government were inaccurate or wrong,” he said told New Sarawak Tribune on Monday (July 12).

On the recent article ran by an international news portal describing that Malaysia had gone down the path of failed statehood, Dick noted that a failed government would contribute to a failed state in the long run.

“Valentine Cojanu in 2017 published an article titled Analysis of Failed States: Some Problems of Definition and Measurement which listed 13 criteria of a failed government and weak country.

“Looking at the current situation, there are eight to nine characteristics that are applicable in the context of Malaysia. Some of the criteria include the quality of democracy, safety and security, effectiveness of institutions, corruption, and crime as well as economy.

“Malaysia must be wary and there are actions needed to be taken to prevent the country from becoming a failed state. Other countries may view us as heading down the road of becoming a failed state if those criteria are used as a yardstick.”