Anwar, who is contesting the Tambun
parliamentary seat in Perak, said that he needed to rush to the
constituency for a campaign event as more questions rained upon him.
The shocking reality is that racism and entitlement are embedded in
the mindset of many within the Malay community. The fact that the
question was posed nonchalantly without any sense of shame is proof of
I think Anwar had to conveniently leave because he could not
answer the question. With his "All things to all men" political modus
operandi, answering the question truthfully and rationally would be
"spooking the Malays".
An intelligent Malay student in touch with the modern world and with a sense of equality and justice which Islam supposedly advocates, should be embarrassed by the question.
question itself shows what is seriously wrong with Malaysia and is a
major cause of the problems we are facing, such as corruption, racial
division, and religious intolerance.
What is "reformasi" all about if the Malays are not told that the
rights of other citizens of Malaysia are equal to their rights and that
expecting more rights than other races is immoral?
inform the students that the ‘New Malaysia’ he is trying to build will
not deliberately disadvantage any non-Malay, because as citizens they
will be accorded equal rights as enshrined in the Constitution.
constitutional "special privileges" for the Malays were not meant to
derogate the rights of non-Malays but to redress an imbalance at the
time of Independence in 1957.
The Reid Commission, which was
tasked to formulate a draft constitution, recommended that the
“privileges” for Malays should have a limited time frame of 15 years and
then be reviewed. The aim was to do away with the notion of permanent
“privileges” that the Reid Commission felt uncomfortable with.
more than 60 years of its application, the Malay "privileges", wrongly
termed "rights", have been a signal failure, being a breeding ground for
massive corruption, creating a sense of entitlement leading to
underachievement, a cause of social division and brain drain of the best
and brightest from Malaysia.
The ‘New Malaysia’, to be in line with "reformasi", will address the problem of income inequality and will be based on need.
B40 of all races, the majority of whom are Malay, will benefit from
financial, educational and housing assistance. The notion of "Privileges
for Malays Only" will be relegated to history because it has been
counterproductive, as evidenced by any index of social advancement when
compared to our neighbours like Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam.
‘New Malaysia’ will regard all citizens who are born in Malaysia as
"bumiputera", to give the term its natural meaning of being "a son of
Indonesia, with the world's largest Muslim population, has banned the
terms “pribumi” and “non-pribumi”, introducing a new term, “Asli”, to
apply to all natural-born citizens, regardless of race and religion.
I hope Anwar was going to say the above to the student who touched on
the question of "Malay rights" before he got a chance to answer. Wishful
thinking on my part?