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Opinion

Malaysia's politicians brawl while the economy burns

Ten years of rudderless leadership is suddenly coming to a head

| Malaysia
Muhyiddin Yassin, pictured in Putrajaya on Feb. 24; the Prime Minister spends more time fighting to keep his job than actually doing it.   © Sipa/AP

William Pesek is an award-winning Tokyo-based journalist and author of "Japanization: What the World Can Learn from Japan's Lost Decades."

If there are three words central bankers do not say lightly, it is "significant downside risks." Yet last week, Bank Negara Malaysia had nowhere else to go, rhetorically speaking, as the economy braces for a brutal third wave of COVID-19 infections.

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