By Invitation

Birth pangs of a 'New Malaysia'

As an untested ruling coalition, Pakatan Harapan needs time. That said, its leaders need to better manage fissures within the coalition and its constituent members or face further loss of confidence.

Eight months after Malaysia's momentous election, the initial euphoria is slowly but surely giving way to harsh reality as rumblings of discontent grow louder and louder within Malaysia's ruling Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition.

When it took over the levers of power, the new administration helmed by the indomitable Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was quick to acknowledge the challenges that lay before it: a colossal graft scandal that was blamed on former prime minister Najib Razak and which was bleeding the nation's finances, a ballooning national debt, a sclerotic bureaucracy, and institutions of state that had become heavily politicised.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 05, 2019, with the headline 'Birth pangs of a 'New Malaysia''. Print Edition | Subscribe