The Malaysian Election will be held on March 8 2008. The parties have started campaigning and posters, flag, billboards and signages have already plastered the city of KL (and I suspect other places as well). All this makes for good drama and news but to me, the best (and perhaps the most compelling) piece of news is 89 years old grandmother Maimun Yusof decision to run as an independent for a parliamentary seat in Terengganu.
This is a poor woman who has spent her life savings on the nomination fee (RM 10000). Here is a woman who has spent another RM 3000 on 1000 posters for her campaign. This is a woman who rides an old beaten up red bike telling people to vote for her Parti Kunci (the Key Party). The stacks are all against here with the opponents being seasons opposition. Its impossible for her not to know that the chances of her winning are next to nothing and yet she still does it. Why? To get publicity? To have a laugh? To spice up what could be a dreadful life. No. In her own words,
‘I may be old, poor and uneducated, but I know that I am making a right choice standing in the election as I want to see things change before I die’.
Image taken from the Star
I really can’t help but think that this woman put us all to shame. We talk and complain and rant rave about how things should be different and how things should change but what are we doing to change it? Would we put our life savings on the line? Whenever I think of Maimun Yusof, I get overwhelmed by a combination of shame and admiration. Thank you Maimun for the stirring you have given me……