May 022013
 


photo source: Harakah

Saudara-saudariku,

Andalah penentu segalanya.

Ramai yang sudahpun memutuskan undi mereka akan ke siapa. Hanya segelintir lagi yang masih belum berbuat demikian, dan di tangan andalah terletak masa depan kita semua.

Dalam mempertimbangkan pilihan kita, izinkan saya bandingkan situasi yang kita hadapi dengan menggunakan perumpamaan pasaraya Tesco dan Giant.

Apabila hanya ada Tesco di kawasan kita, adakah Tesco mempunyai motivasi untuk rendahkan harga mereka atau memberi perkhidmatan yang baik?

Sekiranya kita tiada pilihan dan selalu terpaksa pergi ke Tesco, pemilik Tesco boleh bertindak sesuka hati, dari segi penentuan harga barang dan cara pelanggan dilayan.

Pelanggan yang tiada pilihan adalah pelanggan yang tiada kuasa.

Semakin lama Tesco sahaja yang dibenarkan menjual barang di kawasan kita, semakin buruklah layanan mereka terhadap kita, para pelanggan. Akan tetapi, sekiranya Giant membuka pintu di kawasan yang sama, situasi akan jauh berbeza.

Pada peringkat awal, mungkin pelanggan segan untuk mencuba benda yang baru. Tetapi, sekiranya semakin ramai pelanggan pergi ke Giant, Tesco pasti akan terasa.

Sekarang, Tesco tidak boleh lagi bertindak sesuka hati, kerana pelanggan yang tidak puas hati dengan senangnya boleh sahaja pergi ke Giant untuk mendapatkan barang keperluan mereka.

Selagi ada lebih daripada satu pilihan, kedua-dua Tesco dan Giant akan selalu bersaing antara sendiri untuk merendahkan harga, melayan pelanggan dengan lebih baik, memberi tawaran serta ganjaran yang lebih menarik, dan sebagainya.

Mana-mana pihak yang gagal berbuat sedemikian sudah tentu akan kehilangan semua pelanggan mereka.

Dalam sejarah Malaysia, kita hanya pernah ada “Tesco”. Walaupun mungkin baik pada awalnya, jiwanya sudah semakin tercemar akibat terlalu lama menikmati monopoli kuasa.

Pada saat bersejarah ini, bakal muncullah pesaing yang baru.

Sekiranya Tesco dipilih dan kita menolak permohonan Giant untuk membuka kedai mereka, apa yang akan Tesco faham adalah: kita boleh buat sesuka hati, rakyat akan tetap pilih kita.

Sekiranya Giant dipilih, apa yang Giant akan faham adalah: rakyat telah beri satu peluang pertama ini kepada kami. Jika kami gagal, sudah pasti mereka tidak akan pilih kami lagi.

Rakyat yang tiada pilihan adalah rakyat yang tiada kuasa.

Giant ini bukanlah sempurna, dan pemimpinnya bukanlah semua alim dan berintegriti.

Walaubagaimanapun, mereka telah membuktikan diri dalam pengurusan beberapa negeri yang telah mula nampak ada pembaharuan dan pembaikan. Semakin banyak diberi balik kepada rakyat untuk memenangi hati dan minda, dan persaingan antara Tesco dan Giant semakin sengit. Hasilnya, rakyat yang untung.

Siapa pun yang kita pilih, kita mesti selalu mengingatkan Giant mahupun Tesco: “Kuasa di tangan rakyat – siapa yang kami angkat, kami boleh turunkan kembali, sepertimana yang kami turunkan kali ini. Sempurnakanlah amanah dan peluang yang diberikan, atau sediakanlah diri untuk dipecat lagi.”

Demi anak cucu kita, kita mesti sedia dan berani mengambil kesempatan ini untuk mematangkan demokrasi Malaysia, dan mengembalikan negara kita ke tangan rakyat.

Nathaniel Tan

*
Of Tesco and Giant: An open letter to undecided voters

My fellow Malaysians,

You hold the future of our nation in the palm of your hands.

Many of us have already decided who we will be voting for, but those few of us who have not will be the ones who really determine our future.

It’s understandable if in this mess that is Malaysian politics, no clear choice emerges.

For an undecided voter at this point, we might perhaps assume that both coalitions have some measure of appeal.

There are a large number of differences between the two coalitions, but if we think about the bigger picture, the biggest difference between the two is that one has been in power for all of our nation’s existence.

It is as if for all time, our neighbourhood has had only one Tesco, and no other supermarket. As in all monopolies, the lack of choice for the consumer inevitably means higher prices and terrible service.

Today, for what is in effect the first time ever, we have the opportunity to allow Giant to open its doors in our neighbourhood.

Viable competition creates immediate ripples: both competitors suddenly trip over themselves in trying to reduce prices, offer rewards, and provide better service.

Customer satisfaction means nothing to a business without competitors, it means everything to a business that must beat its competition to survive. A consumer without options is a consumer without power.

As we face the upcoming choice between Tesco and Giant, let us reflect on the message our vote sends.

A vote for Tesco communicates to the powers that be that no matter how bad things get, we will stay with you. The more votes Tesco gets, the more complacent we can expect them to be in the future.

Giant, being the new kid on the block, cannot be expected to have the same outlook. They know that those who vote for them are taking a big leap of faith, and will very, very quickly reverse their support should they fail to perform. Even if they do not come to power, a vote for Giant also signals to Tesco that they should not take their customers for granted.

A citizen without options is a citizen without power.

Tesco is probably not all evil. It is no longer the same Tesco it was when it opened 57 years ago however. Being a monopoly for too long changes anybody and anything.

I think all of us have experienced in some form of another what happens when any person or group is left in power for too long.

Power is a being onto itself. The wise understand that power shapes us more than we shape power. The longer we ride the tiger that is power, the more it is that the tiger decides our course, not us; and that course is usually the course of increasing internal rot.

If there is hope for Tesco to reform, they must dismount their mad tiger first, and those who have sat too long in power must be pushed out, for it is not something given up easily.

We do not expect Giant to be all saintly and a model corporation every step of the way. We can however expect them to bring a fresh approach and a more ardent desire to do right by their customers. When they do wrong, it will fall to us to give them sharp reminders of how to do right.

Change can always be frightening, but the time has come for Malaysians to abandon their fears and take charge of their own fates.

Now is the time – the time not to install one tyrant in place of another, but to affirm our democratic right to change the government whenever we see fit. Malaysians need to feel that their ability to do so is real, and not paper theory.

Once we empower ourselves, there will be no turning back – never again will our governments take us for granted, and never again will we surrender to an unworthy few our power to form a better Malaysia.

Nathaniel Tan

  2 Responses to “Hikayat Tesco dan Giant: Surat Terbuka Kepada Pengundi Atas Pagar (BM & Eng)”

  1. well said, nat! probably wrong to quote the following i learnt in a harvard grad’s blog. keeping finger crossed for GE13!

    modern day pragmatic political theory reminded us that 2 other forces, that is the force of distortion and subjugation, are always at work. The force of distortion happens whenever princes fight amongst themselves vying for ‘Ketuanan’. The force of subjugation from the rakyat wishing to get their rights represented gets the princes work for their good.

    yes, never again will we surrender to an unworthy few! imperfect as it may be, imperfect as we all may be.

  2. kepala otak engko, tesco and giant all under a same company
    waste my time reading

 Leave a Reply

(required)

(required)

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>