Friday, 15 May 2009

Wooing Manisah Haji Bakhil

Yang Mana Satu...

Lat on Perak's Stalemate, NST May 15, 2009

Lat’s cartoons have always been snappy, sharp and biting, and today’s in the NST was no different.

Since the late Tan Sri P Ramlee’s Labu Labi is forever my favorite, it immediately triggered the beautiful “Yang Mana Satu” song in my mind.

For those not in the know, Labu (M Zain, cook) and Labi (PRamlee, driver) were the servants for one Haji Bakhil, and both have got the hots for their employer’s daughter, Manisah.

Unlike the typical Hollywood offering, this classic did not offer any happy ending where the so-called hero gets the girl and supposedly lived happily ever after.

That said, the cartoon got me thinking.

Its canny juxtaposition of Labu Labi with the Perak conundrum (Labu Labi ~ Nizar Zambry, Manisah ~ Perakians, Haji Bakhil ~ the country?) is the work of true genius.

Nizar and Zambry are both, in fact, servants of the Rakyat Perak who are supposed to cater for the latter's needs.

In the movie's ending, Labu – transfixed by his angan – angan (dreamtasy?) - forgot this fact and went overboard in his wooing of Manisah, at the same time in dissing his employer Haji Bakhil.

Although both of them “kena” soon after, it would be Labu’s reputation that is worst off.

Having a soft spot for Nizar, I hope this does not happen to him in fighting for his right to exclusively serve the rakyat of Perak.

As it was in Labu Labi, it seems to me that there can be no real winner here.

Perhaps they should come to the realization that one has to give way, unless Perakians (Manisah?) presents a clear preference as to who she prefers to be the Chief Khadam.

Technically (not morally) speaking, both the High Court which rule in favor of Nizar and Dr M have pointed out the constitutionally correct way out from the current conundrum.

Why Barisan Nasional did not choose this way three months ago is probably either down to political ineptitude, or, naivety, or something else altogether.

Which one, I don’t really give a hoot.

All those months ago, Perakians have made their preference known, and it was a rejection of BN.

Umno can gloat all about the majority seats it won in the State, but the fact remain that BN lost.

While it can technically (not morally) claim to have the so-called mandate in becoming Chief Khadam, BN should be wary that Perakians might just push the dishes they served aside if the resentment runs too deep.

Which would mean the inevitable boot once the Khadamship's tenure is up.

Sitting down to talk could well be the best option here.

You are both, after all, servants of the one being wooed and not the other way around.

I doubt it would happen, though.

The forever present smirk in the current self proclaimed Menteri Besar says it all.

Nizar has fought the good fight.

Should he choose to let go, it would be with his head held high.

And, another chance at winning Manisah's heart.

Labu, Labi & Manisah

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