The Najib factor in BN’s defeat.

Najib inadvertantly gave Pakatan Harapan the momentum it needed to win the General Election.

Siapa kata ceramah dan perjumpaan BN tiada sambutan.

For The Rembau Times, it is no longer a question of BN losing this election. The only question is by what margin and whether or not PBB will actually remain with BN or jump ship after the results are released.

Now, we saw BN’s defeat in late 2017 due to conviction. Conviction means something that is obvious to you before there are any signs on the ground. We hope to share the reason for the conviction with the incoming Prime Minister and Cabinet, if given a chance.

But today we want to talk about something different called ‘reason.’

Reason is something that is true after the event has happened.  So it is not a good predictor but it can provide an explanation so that people will learn the lessons of history and not repeat past mistakes.

Of course, the number one reason for BN’s defeat has to be on the shoulder of the Prime Minister, Dato Seri Najib Tun Razak.  One big mistake was that he kept on stressing on personal loyalty to him and was surrounded by people who did not live in “actual reality.

Najib’s inner circle tried to push teachings of subservience and personal loyalty to the PM. This blinded him to actually responding to the needs of the country.

Actually, things became worse because the group surrounding Najib has been with him since Ketua Pemuda UMNO days. They rose up because of Najib and could not actually give him the hard advice Najib required to govern the country. Rafizi could not have put it better when he mentioned that it is voters and not Najib which gave the BN leaders their position of power. (But of course BN leaders look down on voters but they forgot about a saying on Wall Street which is don’t keep on doing the same trick.)

The constant references to his Bugis Warrior heritage a disaster because Najib does not have the characteristics of a warrior. This is because people will tell you you are a warrior, you don’t have to tell them that you are a warrior , especially if  you never dare face your opponents head on.

No ordinary lineage, with warriors blood coursing through his veins, according to Najib.

This was  self evident in the actions of ROS who disbanded Pribumi Bersatu.

ROS DG’s decision to disband PPBM was the biggest factor in this election campaign.

In fact, we think the election turned on the Registrar of Societies (“ROS”) Director General’s decision to disband PPBM. This was the crucial decision that set in motion a wave of support for Pakatan Harapan

This is because, the anticipated reaction never materialized. Najib and his advisers did not “war game” the scenario in sufficient detail.  All the scenarios they thought that was going to be in their favor did not happen.

In fact, the counter reaction was even stronger because all the Opposition candidates decided to contest under the PKR logo.

Campaigning under the PKR logo was the biggest factor entering into the final stretch of the campaign.

This is extremely important from a branding perspective because of the following.

Number 1: Unity in the Opposition:

People of all races stood together in unity throughout the country to throw out BN

If Pakatan Harapan campaigned under Pribumi’s logo it would have been a disaster. Campaigning under a PKR log was risky – but the risk was symmetric with a massive payoff. This means if it did not work out, it was a disaster. If it did work out, the payoff was massive.

Standout campaigner for GE14 is Rafizi Ramli. Perhaps he was extra motivated as the Opposition was now campaigning under the PKR logo, a party which he helped form.

The payoff was because it showed sincerity among all the Opposition parties to contest under the PKR logo. Nobody could have scripted this and putting all the parties under 1 logo creates a massive brand pull.  Actually, in hindsight this is the best decision because :

  1. Preserves the 80% support of the Chinese as they know to vote PKR,
  2. Gives DAP a ‘face saving” way to retire the Rocket to help other allies win Malay support. It would have been very difficult for the DAP to convince the Chinese to vote for a Pribumi logo because some of their voters would see it very negatively and feel that there was no difference between the DAP and the MCA.
  3. Allows Pribumi the best possible excuse why they have to campaign under PKR’s logo. The entire exercise and the arrogant manner in which ROS behaved affected BN’s support and at the same time improved sympathy to Pribumi.
Nazri Aziz had arrogantly mocked Pribumi Bersatu as a mosquito party earlier this month. He has now been very quiet.

Wow – who would have thought Najib could have cared so much to help people opposed to him!

Number 2: Makes the election about Najib

The main focus of the election is Najib. .

With Tun Dr Mahathir campaigning on a PKR flag, it reinforces Tun Dr Mahathir’s key message which is that whilst he may have been political enemies with those in the Opposition at one time, everybody has decided to put aside their differences to take down Najib.  This was a key message that the voters needed to digest at the start of the campaign. And the indication is that the voter’s digested the message and accepted it. That is when the polling by Invoke started to shoot up in early April.

Number 3: Fate.

This election story is better than any Star Wars film.

Its about fate, isn’t it. Imagine this, Tun Dr Mahathir campaigning against UMNO while standing on a PKR logo? Isn’t it fated that Tun Dr Mahathir will win once again in this way and in a Star Wars like ending, bring peace to the universe.

What is so special about strong branding

A strong brand creates this sort of effect in increasing your support. That is why the number’s being tracked by Rafizi keeps on increasing day by day and week by week. This is because Pakatan Harapan has built a super brand entering into the campaign, thanks surprisingly to Najib.  That is why Pakatan Harapan’s support will continue to rise into Wednesday, giving our belief that PH will win 2/3 majority and secure every state in Peninsular Malaysia.


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  1. Sir W,

    Has the Rembau Times prediction taken into account the massive cheating ( voter fraud) that is occurring in postal voting and will occur on 9/5?