“Give me what I want, then only I give what the country wants” – can we get unity that way? (SSS Unity Series No. 1)

30 04 2010

We now start a series of unity articles, unity being the aim of Satu Sekolah Untuk Semua (SSS). We begin by asking if can we adopt the stand, “”Give me what I want, then only I give what the country wants”? Can we get unity that way?

The corollary to that is of course US President J.F Kennedy’s famous words, “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country.”

This subject involves a whole host of issues pertaining to loyalty and patriotism. We believe that loyalty must be based on respect for and living by the Constitution of the country. Patriotism is where, when the situation demands it, a citizen is prepared to die for his/ her country.

Related to the above, given below are extracts of articles on recent and current events that show the thinking among the major races in the country. They comprise largely of comments and analyses on the recent Hulu Selangor by-election published online by national newspapers.

We can talk about them in here. Although we are promoting the use of Bahasa Malaysia as it is the National Language, comments may also be in the English language in order to reach a wider audience.



Friday April 23, 2010

Najib is BN’s trump card

The Chinese have responded well to PM’s 1Malaysia concept and the New Economic Model (NEM).


Singling out the economy, which matters a lot to the Chinese, Najib said: “I need the Chinese to be on board to bring Malaysia to a high-income economy.”


With just 48 hours to polling day, they are banking on the 17,000 Chinese voters or 26% of the 64,500 electorate to tilt the balance in favour of Barisan Nasional.

The Chinese, generally a pragmatic lot, are responding well to Najib’s 1Malaysia concept and the New Economic Model (NEM) in particular.


Nevertheless, Kong, who also heads the MCA machinery for this by-election, does not want to speculate when asked whether the encouraging response will be translated into votes come polling day.

It was learnt that only 26% of the Chinese voters supported Barisan in the 2008 general election. Some MCA leaders say they can double this.

If this is achieved, Barisan candidate P. Kamalanathan is set to be the winner this Sunday, said an MCA insider who felt that doubling the support would be difficult, adding that a more conservative estimate would be around 40%


The fight to win the hearts and minds of the Chinese voters has entered the final lap and Najib is seen as the Barisan’s trump card.



Tuesday April 27, 2010

An important victory for Najib

With the Malay heartland remaining steadfast, the Indian community’s moving back to Barisan Nasional helped tip the scales for the ruling coalition.

THE Hulu Selangor (HS) by-election is an important victory for Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and Barisan Nasional. Congratulations are due.


Most importantly, I felt the Indian community was experiencing a change of heart. In 2008, with temple demolitions and Hindraf dominating the headlines, their frustration and anger was palpable. However, their passions are cooling, in HS at least.

The community is clearly moving back into Barisan’s embrace.

Moreover, they saw P. Kamalanathan’s election as a key test of their own commitment to Najib. They also felt that they had to secure the MIC candidate’s victory in order to ensure a pro-establishment Indian presence in Parliament.

If this is trend is repeated across the country, PR’s victory in 2008 will be difficult to replicate.

Indeed, I can still remember interviewing the Premier during the 2008 polls. At the time we discussed the Indian community’s alienation. Najib knew even then he had to win them back and he’s been targeting their votes ever since.

However, Barisan is still weakened. The recent Indian swing to the ruling coalition will count for nothing if the internal leadership issues within the MIC are not resolved soon.

The same goes for the larger problems of the community’s socio-political and economic alienation. Fail to deliver and they’ll head back to Pakatan.

Najib needs to ensure the entire Barisan pulls its weight.

On that score, the BN component parties (particularly the MCA) are mere shadows. Umno continues to dominate the coalition and the Chinese community feels uncomfortable with this situation.


The Chinese community in HS voted for Pakatan solidly, a sign that Barisan will have to work harder and smarter.

The by-election also proves that the single-minded focus on promoting Malay rights is a vote-winner with the Malay heartland. This is worrying.

Umno will certainly continue in this direction and Perkasa’s position will become stronger.



Tuesday April 27, 2010

Moving the Chinese ground


At the same time, there was also a degree of frustration amid the upbeat mood because the Chinese vote had not moved to Barisan. Only about 20% of those in Chinese-majority areas had helped Barisan’s P. Kamalanathan to win.

“We can’t deny it. The Chinese ground has not shifted since the 2008 general election,” said Datuk Seri Dr Fong Chan Onn, who heads the MCA think-tank Insap.

Things could have been worse. The reading shortly after nomination day was that up to 85% of the Chinese would support PKR’s Datuk Zaid Ibrahim.

MCA leaders readily admit that Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s decision to go down and make his presence felt in a number of Chinese new villages in the constituency had an effect.

“The Prime Minister put his prestige on the line. He helped stem the flood,” said Dr Fong.

Umno politicians have been asking why MCA has been unable to do its part in delivering the Chinese vote. They are puzzled that the Chinese could not be moved by the Government’s promise of a RM3mil grant for the Chinese school there.

One Umno politician had asked rather rhetorically: “What more do the Chinese want?”

“What many Umno politicians fail to understand is that many issues that upset the Chinese have more to do with Umno than with MCA,” said Sin Chew executive director Rita Sim.

For instance, Datuk Noh Omar’s foot-in-the-mouth remark that non-Malays should be grateful they were granted citizenship was appalling and ill-timed.

The Selangor Umno deputy chief quickly apologised but the damage was done. DAP went to town with it, stringing up banners of him in the Chinese new villages.

There were other current issues affecting the Chinese mood in Hulu Selangor. One is the lingering spill-over from the Barisan takeover of Perak.


The Chinese are not born to be anti-government nor are they ungrateful for what they have.

They have given overwhelming support to Barisan many times. In 1995, they voted for Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s leadership; in 1999, they propped him up against Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s reformasi movement; in 2004, they embraced the incoming Prime Minister Tun Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

They have always been very tactical about the power of their vote. The post-Merdeka generation especially feel they are 100% Malaysian. They do not see why they have to put up with quotas when it comes to education, job and business opportunities and even when buying homes.

Such perceived inequalities influence the way they vote so they take it out on the MCA via the ballot box. It was such Chinese frustration that toppled the Penang government in 2008.

Najib more than any other leader understands all this. His dilemma is that what the non-Malays want are seen as threats to the rights of the Malays. On the other hand, what the Malays demand as their birthright are perceived as discriminatory by the other communities.

As MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek admitted in his frank and direct way, the internal party problems in the past one-and-a-half years have taken their toll on the party image.

Things settled down after the party polls last month but the party is still in the process of rebuilding its image. Dr Chua has taken note of the wake-up call and wants to get things back on track.

The party also had some local political issues in Kuala Kubu Baru.

The current assemblyman used to be a disciple of the former assemblyman but student and sifu went their separate ways because they supported different presidential candidates in the recent party elections. This created problems on the ground.

Perkasa and the ultra-Malay stands of Datuk Ibrahim Ali have also been a sore point among many Chinese who see it as a step backwards for nation-building. Ibrahim’s latest statement to punish the Chinese voters is not going to help.

Throwing money at Chinese voters during an election has limited effect. They are quite sophisticated about such gestures and they know how to keep their eye on the big picture. Pakatan exploited this sentiment very well in Hulu Selangor.

“People do feel that Barisan has done things and Najib has started some good policies. He has to continue with the good things. The goodwill is there but it has yet to translate into votes.



Sunday April 25, 2010

Sugar, spice and everything nice


But this is an election and politicians must promise the sky, if not heaven, to lock in the votes to ensure a victory.

On Friday, the forgotten Felda settlers in Sungai Buaya received RM50,000 each from the sale of land for development 15 years ago. The money was handed to them by the Prime Minister.

Not to be outdone, the Selangor Mentri Besar promised to acquire the land if the federal government failed to resolve the issue.

It is said that the Felda settlers make up a huge chunk of the 35,000 Malay voters and they are likely to determine the results today.

For the Chinese voters, who are perceived to be anti-establishment in the polls, MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek has announced that Chinese independent school students are now eligible to apply for National Higher Education Corporation (PTPTN) loans.

It’s a big deal as education is an important issue for the Chinese community, and the announcement was in fact on the front pages of Chinese dailies.

The fight for the 16,891 Chinese voters was bitter as the PKR’s Zaid Ibrahim is banking on this segment to pull him through.

Zaid was probably picked because he is regarded as a liberal, never mind if he’s doubted by some of the Malay voters. But he would probably be liked by the Chinese voters.

He has admitted to owning racehorses but does not gamble. The Chinese voters would probably not care about this, but it would be challenged by Muslim voters.


There seems to be something for everybody and we hope someone is keeping track of these promises. Let’s hope there isn’t any caveat attached because those who made the promises must deliver them regardless of the outcome.


Malay rights champion Datuk Ibrahim Ali of Perkasa was campaigning for Kamala nathan, an Indian, and not Zaid Ibrahim. Of course, he had to explain at his ceramah why he wasn’t insisting on a Malay this time. But he’s a seasoned politician with answers for every nasty question.


Next stop – Sibu. The hotels and resthouses there are all fully booked already. There will be more promises and more goodies for sure.


‘Bedah siasat’ pengundi Cina sokong pembangkang



KUALA LUMPUR 26 April – Barisan Nasional (BN) perlu membuat satu ‘bedah siasat’ bagi mengenal pasti punca kenapa pengundi Cina enggan memberi sokongan pada parti tersebut semasa Pilihan Raya Kecil Parlimen Hulu Selangor, semalam.

Bekas Perdana Menteri, Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad berkata, ini kerana parti itu telah melakukan banyak perkara bagi membela nasib penduduk di Hulu Selangor termasuk kaum Cina sendiri.

Malah tegas beliau, Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak telah melakukan yang terbaik bagi mendapatkan sokongan penduduk di kawasan tersebut.

”BN menang tetapi majoritinya tidaklah seperti yang sepatutnya. Ini agak jelas dan kita nampak sokongan yang kurang daripada pengundi Cina.

”Bagaimanapun sokongan kaum Melayu dan India meningkat dan membolehkan BN mencapai kemenangan.

”Kita kena buat bedah siasat dan analisis supaya kita tahu apa masalahnya yang menyebabkan kita menang tetapi dengan majoriti yang tak seperti dijangkakan,” katanya.

Beliau berkata demikian kepada pemberita selepas berucap pada perbincangan “China Yang Kukuh – Implikasi dan Cabaran” anjuran Dewan Perdagangan dan Perindustrian Kebangsaan Malaysia (NCCIM) di sini hari ini.

Pada Pilihan Raya Kecil Parlimen Hulu Selangor semalam, calon BN, P. Kamalanathan berjaya menewaskan calon Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR), Datuk Zaid Ibrahim dengan majoriti 1,725 undi apabila memperoleh 24,997 undi.

Mengulas mengenai kemenangan di Hulu Selangor, Dr. Mahathir berpendapat Najib telah berjaya menukar pandangan penduduk dan daya kepimpinannya kini diterima oleh segenap lapisan rakyat.

Beliau turut menegaskan, kempen-kempen parti yang dikaitkan dengan perkauman sudah tidak lagi memberi kesan kerana dalam tempoh berkenaan mereka boleh bercakap apa sahaja.

Dalam pada itu, Dr. Mahathir berkata, biarpun ada yang berpendapat bahawa politik berasaskan kaum akan berkurangan selepas pilihan raya umum lalu namun jelas bahawa ia semakin kuat berbanding sebelum ini.

Bagaimanapun, beliau percaya, harapan untuk melihat BN menang besar pada Pilihan Raya Umum ke-13 nanti tetap ada.

”Ini kerana keputusan Pilihan Raya Umum 2008 bukan kerana parti BN tetapi kerana orang tertentu yang rakyat tidak suka,” katanya lagi.



Adilkah minta tolong BN tetapi undi pembangkang?

KEPUTUSAN Pilihan Raya Kecil Parlimen Hulu Selangor sekali lagi menampakkan Barisan Nasional (BN) memperolehi undi yang mengecewakan daripada pengundi-pengundi Cina.

Walaupun terdapat sedikit peningkatan berbanding 2008, namun ia tidaklah menyeluruh, sebaliknya menunjukkan bahawa masih terdapat penolakan terhadap kerajaan Barisan Nasional (BN).

Ini jelas apabila di peti undi Dewan Undangan Negeri (DUN) Kuala Kubu Bahru yang pengundi Cina adalah majoriti (8,146 pengundi), BN tewas. Keputusan paling rendah dalam pilihan raya kecil berkenaan juga datang dari DUN tersebut iaitu bagi peti undi Rasa, apabila BN hanya mendapat 49 undi manakala Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) 319 undi.

Sama ada hendak diakui atau tidak, MCA dan Gerakan masih gagal meyakinkan pengundi Cina untuk kembali kepada BN. Keadaan itu berbeza dengan DAP yang dilihat pemimpinnya mendapat sambutan hangat di DUN tersebut.

Pendirian pengundi-pengundi Cina di dalam memilih BN masih lagi berada di tahap yang rendah dan segala-galanya kerana di Hulu Selangor, Penasihat PKR, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim awal-awal lagi sudah menabur ‘racun’ di situ.

Antara lain beliau mahu pengundi Cina meminta apa sahaja kepada kerajaan BN tetapi menyebelahi PKR ketika mengundi. Mungkin inilah yang dilakukan oleh pengundi-pengundi Cina di Hulu Selangor.

Walaupun pelbagai tuntutan termasuklah mendirikan sekolah jenis kebangsaan Cina diluluskan oleh kerajaan BN tetapi keseluruhan mereka tidak membalasnya dalam bentuk undi.

Mereka tetap tertarik dan terpengaruh dengan propaganda pembangkang yang sudah pastinya mengamalkan politik sempit dalam memastikan pengundi Cina tidak menyebelahi BN.

Keadaan itu menunjukkan apa yang dikatakan oleh Timbalan Presiden MCA, Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai bahawa 50 peratus pengundi Cina akan menyebelahi BN tidak menjadi kenyataan, sebaliknya dakwaan pembangkang bahawa mereka menguasai 75 peratus undi kelompok tersebut adalah benar.

Oleh itu timbul persoalan, apakah selepas ini dalam kempen-kempen pilihan raya, BN perlu memberi tumpuan kepada pengundi Cina dan memenuhi apa sahaja tuntutan mereka tetapi tidak mendapat apa-apa undi?

BN perlu faham bahawa parti itu bernasib baik kerana pengundi Melayu dan India memberikan sokongan padu kepadanya. Jika peningkatan sokongan tidak berlaku di kalangan kedua-dua masyarakat berkenaan, sudah pasti BN akan kecundang di Hulu Selangor.

Adalah sesuatu yang malang, apabila dalam keadaan kerajaan berusaha bersungguh-sungguh membela nasib rakyat melalui gagasan 1Malaysia, Rakyat Didahulukan, Pencapaian Diutamakan, pengundi Cina masih belum mahu menyebelahi BN. Mereka masih dilihat mahu mengekalkan sokongan kepada parti-parti pembangkang yang mereka tahu tidak mampu melakukan apa-apa untuk kehidupan mereka.

Pada 2008, kita akui mereka berhak menolak BN kerana pelbagai kemelut yang berlaku ketika itu. Tetapi sekarang kepimpinan negara berada di bawah Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak dan Perdana Menteri sendiri sudah menunjukkan komitmennya untuk memastikan semua rakyat mendapat pembelaan sewajarnya.

Majoriti pengundi Cina di Hulu Selangor bukannya tidak tahu perkara ini, tetapi mereka masih mahu kekal bersama-sama pembangkang.

Justeru sudah tiba masanya BN menukar strateginya dengan memastikan segala peruntukan dan bantuan hanya diberikan kepada peti undi-peti undi yang pengundi Cina benar-benar menyokong BN.

Kepada kawasan-kawasan yang peti undi dilihat ketara menyokong pembangkang, biarlah mereka meminta bantuan dan peruntukan daripada pakatan berkenaan terutamanya di Selangor.

Mungkin keadaan ini kelihatan tidak adil tetapi bagaimana dengan sikap mereka yang hanya tahu meminta itu dan ini tetapi bila mengundi masih mahu menyebelahi pembangkang? Adakah itu adil kepada BN?



MCA, Gerakan perlu beri perhatian serius

JOHOR BAHRU 26 April – MCA dan Gerakan diminta memberi perhatian serius terhadap sikap masyarakat Cina yang kurang memberi sokongan kepada Barisan Nasional (BN) pada Pilihan Raya Kecil Parlimen Hulu Selangor.

Sambil menyifatkan kemenangan BN sebagai amat bermakna dan menunjukkan sokongan rakyat terhadap Perdana Menteri, namun kemenangan itu perlu disusuli dengan kerja keras termasuk mengenal pasti punca kekurangan undi masyarakat Cina.

Dua ahli Majlis Tertinggi (MT) UMNO, Datuk Seri Mohd. Ali Rustam dan Datuk Abdul Ghani Othman berpendapat, trend dan corak pengundian tersebut perlu dikaji agar BN dapat meningkatkan sokongan pada pilihan raya umum akan datang.

Mohd. Ali menegaskan, keputusan semalam jelas menunjukkan undi kaum Cina agak berkurangan dan ini mungkin disebabkan terdapat faktor yang menyebabkan perkara itu berlaku.

“Banyak peti undi di kawasan majoriti pengundi kaum Cina kurang cenderung kepada BN.

“Kita berhadap masyarakat Cina dapat memberi isyarat yang betul kerana BN hendak membantu semua rakyat tanpa mengira keturunan kerana dasar BN adalah untuk semua orang,” katanya.


Mohd. Ali memberitahu, beliau melihat masih terdapat sentimen di kalangan masyarakat Cina dengan memberi undi kepada calon BN bagi kerusi Dewan Undangan Negeri manakala mengundi calon pembangkang bagi kerusi Parlimen.

Menurutnya, perkara itu perlu ditangani BN melalui semua parti komponen dengan berusaha melakukan sesuatu bagi mengembalikan sokongan pengundi Cina.

”Bagi kita setiap pembangunan dan bantuan yang dibawa oleh BN bersifat untuk semua dan tidak memilih keturunan.

”MCA, Gerakan dan parti komponen BN lain boleh mengambil perhatian masalah berkenaan agar sokongan BN terus diperkukuhkan pada masa depan,” ujarnya.

Ghani pula memberitahu, pola pengundian menerusi peti-peti undi di kawasan kampung, kampung baru, luar bandar dan bandar perlu diteliti kerana ia boleh membantu memahami pengundi sama ada berkaitan isu nasional atau setempat.



Krisis MCA jejas pengundi Cina – Soi Lek

KUALA LUMPUR 26 April – Presiden MCA, Datuk Seri Dr. Chua Soi Lek hari ini mengakui krisis dalaman parti itu antara penyebab masih ramai pengundi Cina tidak memilih Barisan Nasional (BN) pada Pilihan Raya Kecil Parlimen Hulu Selangor, semalam.

Menurut beliau, hanya 30 peratus pengundi Cina di Parlimen itu mengundi BN mungkin disebabkan oleh keyakinan mereka terhadap MCA belum pulih sepenuhnya.

Katanya lagi, perbezaan pendapat antara bekas Pengerusi MCA Hulu Selangor, Datuk Ch’ng Toh Eng dan penyandang sekarang, Wong Koon Mun sedikit sebanyak turut menjejaskan sokongan terhadap BN.

”Bahkan pertikaian itu juga menyebabkan ahli-ahli akar umbi MCA dan penduduk di Hulu Selangor turut memboikot parti.

”Ia merupakan satu isyarat, jika mereka (pemimpin MCA Hulu Selangor) tidak mengetepikan perbezaan antara mereka, maka MCA akan menjadi bakul sampah politik,” katanya kepada Utusan Malaysia di sini hari ini.

Semalam, BN memberikan isyarat awal kebangkitan semua parti itu di Selangor apabila menawan kembali Parlimen Hulu Selangor menerusi calonnya, P. Kamalanathan yang menewaskan calon Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR), Datuk Zaid Ibrahim dengan majoriti 1,725 undi.

Bagaimanapun, Setiausaha Agung BN, Datuk Seri Tengku Adnan Tengku Mansor mendedahkan walaupun menang, kebanyakan pengundi Cina tidak menyokong BN – sama seperti Pilihan Raya Umum 2008.

”Kita perlu melihat di mana silap kita. Saya akan berjumpa dengan parti-parti komponen untuk membincangkan perkara ini. Bagaimanapun kita gembira kerana pengundi India kembali menyokong BN. Begitu juga dengan pengundi Melayu,” katanya.

Menurut Soi Lek, selain masalah dalaman MCA, sokongan kaum Cina yang lebih memihak kepada pakatan pembangkang di kawasan tersebut menunjukkan mereka tidak mempedulikan isu peribadi Zaid.

”Walaupun isu Zaid sebagai kaki botol diperbesarkan pada kempen di situ nampaknya ia tidak menjejaskan sokongan pengundi Cina kepada PKR,” katanya.

Sehubungan itu, Soi Lek menegaskan, MCA perlu mengusahakan anjakan paradigma yang lebih menyeluruh bagi mendekati masyarakat Cina yang mementingkan isu lebih besar berkaitan negara.

”Selain kami perlu menyelesaikan masalah dalaman MCA Hulu Selangor, parti juga perlu merancang pelan yang lebih menyeluruh bagi mengembalikan keyakinan pengundi Cina.

”Kita perlu menilai diri dan melihat kembali keperluan semasa selepas 50 tahun merdeka,” katanya.



Pengundi Cina masih merajuk



Di sebalik kejayaan itu, timbul satu perkara yang merimaskan BN apabila analisis menunjukkan pengundi Cina masih tegar hati mereka untuk terus memberikan sokongan kepada calon PKR, Datuk Zaid Ibrahim.

Analisis yang dilakukan mendapati hanya 30 peratus pengundi Cina menyokong calon BN, P. Kamalanathan.

Kenapa hal ini berlaku, sedangkan jentera BN bekerja keras mendekati pengundi Cina termasuk menjawab segala fitnah dan tohmahan tidak berasas yang dilontarkan oleh pakatan pembangkang khususnya PKR.

Apakah ini menunjukkan keyakinan pengundi Cina terhadap BN semakin merosot atau ia seolah-olah memberi isyarat bahawa kepimpinan baru MCA yang diterajui oleh Datuk Seri Dr. Chua Soi Lek tidak diterima.

Sebab itulah, mereka membulatkan hati memilih Zaid, apatah lagi pemilihan Zaid sebagai calon diputuskan oleh DAP.

Presiden MCA, Datuk Seri Dr. Chua Soi Lek menjelaskan kepada Utusan Malaysia, krisis dalaman parti itu yang masih bersisa membuatkan pengundi Cina tidak mahu memilih BN pada pilihan raya kecil tersebut.

Jelasnya, ia mungkin juga disebabkan oleh keyakinan mereka terhadap MCA belum pulih sepenuhnya.

Selain itu, katanya, perbezaan kepimpinan antara bekas Pengerusi MCA Hulu Selangor, Datuk Ch’ng Toh Eng dan penyandang sekarang, Wong Koon Mun sedikit sebanyak turut menjejaskan sokongan terhadap BN.

“Bahkan pertikaian itu juga menyebabkan ahli-ahli akar umbi MCA dan penduduk Cina di Hulu Selangor mengambil tindakan memboikot parti.

“Ia merupakan satu isyarat, jika mereka (pemimpin MCA Hulu Selangor) masih berbeza pendapat, maka MCA akan terus menjadi bakul sampah politik,” katanya ketika dihubungi, semalam.

Selain itu, khabar angin bertiup kencang dengan mengatakan ahli-ahli MCA di peringkat akar umbi di Hulu Selangor merupakan penyokong kuat bekas Presiden MCA, Tan Sri Ong Ka Ting.

Disebabkan itu, ahli-ahli parti tidak mengundi calon BN bagi memberi isyarat bahawa mereka tidak akan memberi sokongan penuh kepada penyandang nombor satu sekarang, Soi Lek.

Walau bagaimanapun, penjelasan Soi Lek mengenai kira-kira 70 peratus pengundi Cina memboikot MCA dan enggan mengundi calon BN disebabkan perselisihan dalaman parti tersebut dilihat tidak kukuh.

Penganalisis Politik, Datuk Cheah See Kian menafikan kecenderungan pengundi Cina terhadap parti pembangkang disebabkan penduduk bosan terhadap MCA yang dilanda krisis dalaman.

Jelasnya, selepas PRU Ke-12 sehingga hari ini, MCA dilihat tidak berubah serta tidak memajukan diri untuk kebaikan masyarakat Cina. Ini menyebabkan masyarakat Cina berasa kecewa terhadap MCA.

Beliau mendakwa, kaum Cina kini kurang berminat bercakap mengenai isu perkauman atau agama, sebaliknya mereka lebih mementingkan parti dan berharap parti mempunyai pandangan tegas terhadap isu yang lebih besar berkaitan negara.

“Kaum Cina kini lebih mementingkan isu negara seperti perkembangan ekonomi, pembasmian rasuah, ketelusan dan kehakiman yang adil. Kaum Cina mahu pemimpin yang boleh membantu pembangunan ekonomi negara dan meningkatkan taraf hidup kaum itu,” katanya kepada Utusan Malaysia.

See Kian berkata, walaupun Perdana Menteri sering mewar-warkan gagasan 1Malaysia, namun masyarakat Cina masih tidak merasakan ada perubahan.

Dalam pada itu, beliau mendakwa, Pertubuhan Pribumi Perkasa Malaysia (Perkasa) menjadi penghalang untuk mencapai gagasan 1Malaysia.

“Perkasa dilihat menghalang kejayaan gagasan 1Malaysia dan menyebabkan masyarakat Cina berfikir kerajaan (BN) kekal seperti dahulu,” katanya.

Sementara itu, Presiden Southern Kolej, Thock Kiah Wah berkata, kaum Cina hilang keyakinan terhadap MCA kerana parti itu gagal menyelesaikan masalah masyarakat Cina dengan baik.

Bahkan, katanya, MCA tidak mempertahankan pendapat dan tegas dalam menangani isu-isu negara.

“Pandangan kaum Cina kini tidak lagi dihadkan kepada sesebuah parti yang mewakili masyarakat Cina untuk mempertahankan keperluan asas mereka. Parti yang disukai adalah parti yang layak mewakili Malaysia dan mempertahankan ketelusan serta keadilan di negara ini. Ini antara ciri-ciri yang tidak ada pada MCA,” katanya.

Beliau berkata, jika BN mahu memenangi semula keyakinan masyarakat Cina, mereka perlu mewujudkan sebuah kerajaan yang seimbang, adil tanpa mengutamakan kaum-kaum tertentu sahaja.



Sabotaj antara punca sokongan pengundi Cina merosot

29/04/2010 8:26pm

KUALA LUMPUR 29 April – Unsur sabotaj di kalangan anggota MCA merupakan antara faktor menyebabkan kemerosotan sokongan pengundi Cina kepada Barisan Nasional (BN) pada Pilihan Raya Kecil Parlimen Hulu Selangor, Ahad lalu.

Presiden MCA, Datuk Seri Dr. Chua Soi Lek berkata, unsur sabotaj itu berlaku ketika beliau turun padang ke pekan Kuala Kubu Baharu pada hari pengundian dan mendapati tiada ahli dari dua cawangan MCA di situ membantu meraih undi di pusat pengundian di situ.

“Ia mungkin menjadi salah satu faktor kerana sekiranya mereka tidak datang dan membantu, saya fikir mereka juga tidak mengundi kepada BN,” katanya kepada pemberita selepas mempengerusikan mesyuarat Majlis Presiden di Wisma MCA di sini hari ini.

Berikutan insiden itu, Dr. Soi Lek telah mengarahkan Setiausaha Agung parti, Datuk Seri Kong Cho Ha, yang juga ketua penyelaras MCA pusat bagi pilihan raya kecil itu, menyiapkan satu laporan dan analisis berkaitan keputusan pilihan raya kecil tersebut.

Katanya, parti itu akan membincangkan tindakan susulan selepas menerima laporan itu dalam tempoh masa tiga minggu. – Bernama



Friday April 30, 2010

Improved Chinese support for BN

KUALA LUMPUR: The 28% Chinese support in the Hulu Selangor by-election is an improvement though it was not up to mark, said MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek.

Citing a survey, he said that the support had been around 14% after Selangor fell to Pakatan Raykat.

Chinese support for Barisan during the 2008 general election had been 35%.

Dr Chua said that the party would conduct a three-day brainstorming session in Port Dickson from June 18 to further analyse the trend and prepare for the next general election.

“We want to ensure the Chinese understand the importance of the 1Malaysia concept for all Malaysians, the New Economic Model and that this is the best opportunity to support our Prime Minister for his inclusive policy,” he told reporters after chairing the presidential council meeting here yesterday.

Dr Chua said secretary-general Datuk Seri Kong Cho Ha, who headed the party’s election machinery in Hulu Selangor, would prepare a report on the analysis of the by-election within three weeks.

The scope of the analysis would also cover talk of sabotage by certain branches and grassroots leaders, he revealed.



Hormat the Yang Berhormat and Article 152 on Bahasa Malaysia

26 04 2010

This is perhaps a follow up to our earlier post on some Yang Berhormats who are not quite yang berhormat as stated by HRH Sultan Perak during his recent birthday ceremony.

We now have a new Yang Berhormat in Hulu Selangor just elected to Parliament yesterday 25 Arpril 2010. He has won it in what has been reported as a free and fair democratic process and he deserves to be called Yang Berhormat, in the tradition of the democratic system of addressing elected representatives in this country. We believe he is not the kind who would stand up on the table and shout in the august debating hall.

But let’s consider the process that took place for him to get there. What kind of Yang Berhormats were involved and what kind of words and actions they displayed to help get the man a Parliamentary seat. Of course, we at Kempen SSS (Satu Sekolah Untuk Semua) wish to highlight the issues pertaining to single-stream schooling and the creation of a united and cohesive Bangsa Malaysia through only one system of schooling (sekolah kebangsaan) instead of the present three (including sekolah Cina and Sekolah Tamil).

Here are what have been said concerning those, including by Yang Amat Berhormat Perdana Menteri. All these have been in the attempt to get their (coalition) man into Parliament and become a Yang Berhormat. They seem to want to get votes by what they said and did. Irrespective of whether or not what they said and did (promoting schools that have Mandarin as the medium of instruction) were contradicting Article 152 of the Constitution on the position of Bahasa Malaysia as the National Language of the country. Yet those areas with the majority comprising those they try to placate did not give their votes to the new Yang Berhormat.

See if you agree with they have said in the articles reproduced below (some by way of extracts), what they have asked, what have been promised, have the promises been too much considering the votes delivered in Chinese majority areas, etc. And, most importantly, where is the hormat (respect) for Article 152 of the Constitution on Bahasa Malaysia as the National Language.

When officiating the 12th sitting of Selangor State Assembly, HRH Sultan Selangor asked that all parties understand and respect the Constitution, and use it as a basis in managing (political) problems. The Sultan hoped that all State Assembly Yang Berhormats can provide a clear message on this to the rakyat.

We understand that the new Hulu Selangor Parliamentary Yang Berhormat is fluent in Bahasa Malaysia and hope he will show support for SSS and provide a clear message to his constituents and others of Article 152 on Bahasa Malaysia.



PM tolak tanggapan kerajaan tidak bantu sekolah cina

24/04/2010 5:15pm

HULU SELANGOR 24 April – Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak berkata, tanggapan segelintir masyarakat Cina bahawa kerajaan mengabaikan mereka terutamanya dalam aspek pendidikan adalah tidak benar.

Beliau berkata, pada tahun 2008 sahaja kerajaan telah memperuntukkan sebanyak RM145 juta khusus untuk pembangunan Sekolah Jenis Kebangsaan Cina (SJKC).

“Kerajaan dah buat banyak perkara untuk sekolah Cina. Buktinya, kita telah peruntukkan sebanyak RM145 juta menerusi dua pakej ransangan ekonomi pada 2008,” katanya.

Beliau berkata demikian ketika berucap di Sekolah Rendah Jenis Kebangsaan Cina (SRJKC) Rasa di sini sempena tinjauan mesra kempen Pilihan Raya Kecil bagi kerusi Parlimen Hulu Selangor hari ini.

Hadir sama, Presiden MCA, Datuk Seri Dr. Chua Soi Lek, Menteri Perumahan dan Kerajaan Tempatan, Datuk Seri Kong Cho Ha, Timbalan Menteri Pelajaran, Datuk Dr. Wee Ka Siong dan Timbalan Menteri Kewangan, Datuk Seri Chor Chee Heung.

Pada majlis itu Najib yang juga Menteri Kewangan meluluskan peruntukan sebanyak RM3 juta untuk pembinaan bangunan baru SRJK (C) Rasa yang telah berusia lebih 80 tahun.

Najib berkata, peruntukan itu diberikan selepas beliau mendengar taklimat daripada Pengerusi Lembaga Pengurus Sekolah yang memerlukan peruntukan pembinaan sekolah itu.

“Setelah mendengar penerangan panjang lebar dari pihak sekolah, saya dengan ini mengesahkan kerajaan bersetuju memberi peruntukan sebanyak RM3 juta kepada sekolah ini,” katanya.

Beliau berkata, pemberian itu adalah dengan syarat iaitu kerajaan negeri Selangor tidak mengambil alih tapak asal sekolah ini sebaliknya ia perlu dikekalkan di bawah pentadbiran lembaga pengurus sekolah untuk tujuan kemasyarakatan.

“Kalau esok Barisan Nasional (BN) menang, saya sebagai Menteri Kewangan akan mengeluarkan surat peruntukan dan RM3 juta itu akan dimasukkan ke dalam akaun Lembaga Pengurus Sekolah dan wang itu boleh diambil keesokan harinya (Isnin),” katanya.- Bernama



Saturday April 24, 2010

Wooing the Chinese voters

The Chinese vote in the Hulu Selangor parliamentary by-election will be crucial to the outcome. With that in mind, the MCA has been going all out to help ensure a Barisan Nasional victory.

THE ball is in your court now – that’s the message from Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek to the Chinese community after almost a week of heavy campaigning in Hulu Selangor.

By now, Hulu Selangor residents perhaps are more well-versed with Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s 1Malaysia concept and the New Economic Model (NEM) than many others, he said, before pointing out that it was just the beginning.

Citing examples, he said, the Chinese have always asked for fairness and Najib had stated that the NEM would be “merit and not race-based.”


The forthright MCA president has told the Chinese that it is really up to them to put Najib on the path to delivering his promises.

“He cannot do it alone,” said Dr Chua.

Chinese voters comprise 26% of the 63,953 electorate and are regarded as crucial. In the last general election, PKR won by a 198-vote majority and no one has dared to predict the outcome of the race this time.

Chinese voters are perceived to be more inclined towards Pakatan Rakyat with the MCA pushing hard to win them over with just 24 hours to go before voting.



Saturday April 24, 2010

PTPTN loans for Chinese students

KUALA KUBU BARU: National Higher Education Corporation (PTPTN) loans have been made available to students from Chinese independent schools, said MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek.

The Government gave the green light after a meeting last week between party leaders and Higher Education Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Khaled Nordin. Also at the meeting were Deputy Education Minister Datuk Dr Wee Ka Siong, Deputy Higher Education Minister Dr Hou Kok Chung and Hulu Selangor MCA division chairman Wong Koon Mun.

“We are happy the Higher Education Ministry has given its approval,” Dr Chua told reporters after visiting the wet market in Kalumpang new village near here yesterday.

PTPTN loans are currently open to students in private colleges and universities in the country.

Those from independent schools will be eligible only if they are pursuing studies in local and private institutions of higher education.


On another matter, Dr Chua said the MCA had succeeded in getting land for schools from property developers. “We need more in areas such as Sungai Long, Serdang, Kajang and Puchong.”

Dr Chua said although PKR had made many promises to voters in the previous general election, such as granting land for Chinese schools, no such approval had been done so far.

He added that Pakatan had also claimed sand would be an important source of revenue. “In fact, they quoted RM150mil sand revenue per year, but in 2008-2009, the revenue in Selangor did not exceed RM10mil.”

As for the by-election, he urged the Chinese to support the Prime Minister’s initiatives based on need, merit and market-friendliness.

Later, at a 1Malaysia dinner in Ulu Yam Baru, Dr Chua said the government was in the midst of expediting the process to get the Unified Examination Certificate recognised.

It is offered by Dong Jiao Zong for students completing six years at independent schools.



Saturday April 24, 2010

Malay ground will be the decider

The vast Malay ground will be crucial in deciding the winner in the Hulu Selangor by-election tomorrow

THE Malay vote will decide whether Hulu Selangor will remain with Pakatan Rakyat or return to the Barisan Nasional.

The Malays make up 54% of the 63,593 voters and their sheer numbers will now determine where the seat will swing.

The Chinese make up 26% of the electorate and Indian 19%. But with almost 70% of Chinese votes said to be leaning towards Pakatan and the Indian vote showing a slight advantage to the Barisan, it is now up to the Malays to call the shots on Sunday.

Top leaders from both sides have trained their spotlight on the Malay voters the last two days, reaching out to them whether they are deep in the interior in Felda schemes or residing in semi-urban settlements.

For instance, the endless harping about American ties and Israeli links are aimed largely at a Malay audience. The non-Malays are not worked up over these sort of issues.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak made his second high-profile visit yesterday, with a string of activities after performing Friday prayers in Sungai Buaya.

Some said Najib, who is also Selangor Umno chief, was confident of a win and that is why he has been moving around. But Umno politicians insisted they are taking nothing for granted.

“That the PM is on the ground shows how seriously he is taking the whole thing. He is not interested in feel-good reports. He wants to know the real situation,” said state Barisan treasurer Datuk Faisal Abdullah.

Umno workers completed their third and final round of house-to-house campaigns yesterday. The door-to-door canvassing is Umno’s biggest strength in a contest of this nature.

They have a comprehensive database of Malay households, whose political sentiments are colour-coded as black (hostile), grey (fence-sitter) and white (supporter). Their aim is to dilute the black into grey, turn the grey into white and keep the white on their side.

Pakatan is reaching out to voters mainly via the ceramah circuit.

Huge billboards showing PAS spiritual leader Datuk Nik Aziz Nik Mat against a green backdrop have appeared in Malay areas with the words, “Berdoalah untuk kemenangan Datuk Zaid,” appealing to voters to pray that Zaid will win.

“It is very tough. We are hoping Nik Aziz can turn the tide for Zaid,” said Selangor Speaker Teng Chang Khim.

Both Nik Aziz and Zaid are fellow Kelantanese. Apparently, Nik Aziz had been a guest at Zaid’s Kota Baru home a couple of times even when they were on opposite sides of the political fence.

But there are no permanent friends or foes in politics. They are now on the same political platform and the elder politician has made a passionate plea on Zaid’s behalf.

Pakatan started out with a clear-cut message to the electorate Selamatkan Malaysia – Save Malaysia. Their candidate, the erudite and well-known Zaid, was meant to epitomise the saviour role that Pakatan sought to play in Malaysia’s new politics.

But as some have pointed out, the campaign might as well have been themed Selamatkan Datuk Zaid Ibrahim, given the way Pakatan had to defend him against allegations about his lifestyle.

Pakatan knew from the start that it had limited support among the Malays even though he is legislator material.

He had occupied the moral high ground but slipped in the Malay ratings after being mired in controversy over his alcohol consumption and race-horses ownership – both big no-nos among Muslims.

The issue has not affected the Chinese support but the cost on the conservative Malay vote is exerting its toll. He would be a very worried man if he knew what the Umno house-to-house canvassers are saying about his views on issues like the Lina Joy apostasy case and the Allah issue.

By mid-week, Pakatan leaders, already hit by the defections among middle-ranking officials, decided that Zaid’s situation was so indefensible that the best way to deal with it was to stop responding to the accusations.

Leaders like Datuk Seri Hadi Awang have detoured to talking about the Government’s role in tackling poverty while Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim stuck to tested favourites like missing jet engines, Apco and Israel, corruption and cronyism.

Both coalitions have been evenly matched and are equally hungry for a win.

Barisan candidate P. Kamalanathan had to take his share of personal hits with questions raised about his education credentials and other personal issues.

Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s appearance with Kamalanathan on Thursday night was aimed at sealing in the Umno-Malay vote. The picture of Dr Mahathir with his hand on Kamalanathan’s shoulder had only one message – the candidate has the blessing of the former prime minister.


Pakatan reckons it has about 45% of the Malay support and is depending on Nik Aziz to swing things around for them.

Barisan is ahead among the Malays and conservative estimates have 57% of Malays on its side while more optimistic estimates go as high as 65%. Barisan needs to increase its share of the Malay vote to make up for lost ground among the Chinese.

The Malay vote has never been more important for either side.


Monday April 26, 2010

It’s a wake-up call, says Chua

KUALA KUBU BARU: The voting pattern among the Chinese in the Hulu Selangor by-election is a wake-up call for MCA leaders that the community is no longer just concerned with basic needs but also national issues, MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek said.


Results from polling stations showed that there was strong support for PKR from areas where the community formed the majority.


Dr Chua also reckoned that the internal problems in the Kuala Kubu Baru division had contributed to the weak support from Chinese voters.

“Infighting exists in all parties but we will have to talk to the people concerned,” he said.

He said the 1½-year party crisis had also affected the Chinese support in the constituency.

“This is a wake-up call for all leaders to put aside their personal differences and work for the good of the rakyat.

“Otherwise, we will be consumed by the political dustbin and be called a political dinosaur,” he said.

On Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s comment that the by-election was an acid test for MCA, he said Najib had made the reference not just to MCA but also himself and Pakatan Rakyat.

“If it was just a reference to MCA, there would not be so many big guns coming here to campaign,” he said.

Party secretary-general Datuk Seri Kong Cho Ha said the party would conduct a post-mortem to find out the reason behind the voting trend of the Chinese in the constituency.

Ask whether the poor response from the Chinese voters would make it more difficult for MCA to deal with Umno, Kong said Malaysia was a multiracial country and all component parties must work together.


Hal Guru

24 04 2010

Berbalik kita kapada hal yang terus menerus berkaitan dengan pelajaran. Perkara guru yang memainkan peranan besar disekolah-sekolah. Dibawah ini ialah suatu rungutan berkenaan penghargaan sumbangan guru dan satu lagi berkenaan kenaikan pangkat.

Mereka yang mahukan sistem sekolah vernakular ada mengatakan sekolah kebangsaan mutunya tidak sebanding dengan sekolah vernakular. Ada yang memuji dedikasi guru-guru disekolah Cina. Apa ini benar? Sejauh mana dedikasi mereka, apa motivasi mereka, apa kemudahan yang diberi kapada mereka – mari kita kongsi maalumat dan pendapat disini.

Rencana ini mengemukakan perkara kemudahan-kemudahan yang diberikan kapada guru-guru dan pensyarah diInstitut Penndidikan Guru – didalam situasi yang tertentu. Namun demikian, kita boleh bincangkan hal guru secara umum juga disini. Silakan.

Dalam pada itu kita harus ingat bahawa jumlah guru-guru disekolah kebangsaan jauh lebih banyak dari sekolah vernakular. Masalahnya juga jauh lebih banyak. Oleh itu, bandingan diantara kedua kumpulan itu harus mengambil kira fakta ini. Namun demikian pihak-pihak berkenaan diKementerian Pelajaran perlu memberi perhatian sepenuhnya keatas rungutan-rungutan yang mempunyai alasan yang kukuh dan sebab yang berpatutan.

Catitan: Rencana ini ditambah/ dikekamskini pada pukul 10.30 pagi.



ARKIB : 21/04/2010
Sumbangan guru tidak dihargai?

SABAN tahun beratus-ratus orang guru dipanggil bertugas membantu Lembaga Peperiksaan Malaysia (LPM) dalam pelbagai tugasan– menggubal soalan, memeriksa kertas jawapan, membuat format soalan dan sebagainya.

Sebagai kakitangan pendidikan yang diasuh dengan cogan kata ‘Berkhidmat Untuk Negara, tiada sebarang penolakan oleh guru untuk menghadiri pelbagai program LPM walaupun pada masa yang sama guru perlu melaksanakan tugas hakiki mereka di sekolah.

LPM juga sentiasa menghargai sumbangan para guru dengan menyediakan kemudahan mengikut kelayakan seperti elaun perbatuan, tiket penerbangan, kemudahan penginapan mengikut kelayakan dan sebagainya.

Malangnya, mulai tahun 2010, dengan pelbagai alasan kononnya untuk berjimat, LPM telah menidakkan sumbangan para guru dan seterusnya memperkecilkan maruah guru dengan menyediakan kemudahan yang tidak mengikut standard pekeliling yang ditetapkan. Antaranya:-

n Kemudahan tiket penerbangan telah ditarik balik.

Kelayakan yang diberi ialah tambang teksi satu tempat duduk. Bayangkan jika guru berkenaan datang dari Kota Bharu, Kelantan, berapa lama masa diambil untuk menunggu tempat duduk teksi berkenaan penuh? Rasanya dua hari dua malam pun belum tentu teksi berkenaan ada empat penumpang. Suka tak suka guru berkenaan terpaksa memandu kenderaan sendiri dari Kota Bharu ke Kuala Lumpur.

Sepatutnya guru berkenaan layak menuntut tambang gantian kapal terbang. LPM hanya membenarkan guru menuntut tambang satu tempat duduk teksi. Berapa guru berkenaan dibayar? RM160 pergi-balik untuk perjalanan lebih 1,500 km sedangkan kos sebenar membawa kenderaan sendiri dan tol mencecah RM300 pergi dan balik. Hal ini belum termasuk penat lelah guru mengharungi perjalanan jauh.

n Kemudahan bilik penginapan yang tidak mengikut pekeliling perkhidmatan.

Kerajaan menyediakan kemudahan penginapan satu bilik bagi guru DG48, DG52, DG54 dan ke atas. Guru DG48 ke atas yang berkhidmat dengan LPM biasanya ialah pengetua, pengetua kanan atau guru cemerlang yang berusia lebih 50 tahun ke atas. Ada yang satu atau dua tahun lagi hampir pencen.

Malangnya, LPM telah menarik balik kemudahan ini. Semua peserta mesti berkongsi bilik tanpa mengira gred jawatan mereka. Isunya, standard hotel yang disediakan oleh LPM juga semakin rendah. Ada hotel yang hanya menyediakan satu katil dan sehelai selimut dan bilik yang amat kecil. Apakah ‘orang-orang tua’ ini selesa untuk berkongsi bilik bagi jangka masa lima hari bertugas di LPM? Kita ingin bertanya kepada Pengarah Peperiksaan, adakah beliau turut mengamalkan berkongsi bilik ketika bertugas di luar stesen/negeri?

n Dasar baru LPM yang mengadakan mesyuarat di LPM Putrajaya atau LPM Jalan Duta amat membingungkan dan menyusahkan guru.

Bayangkan guru dikehendaki hadir mesyuarat pukul 9 pagi Isnin. Maka guru dari Kota Bharu/Alor Star yang baru turun dari bas dengan beg besar pun bergegas ke LPM tanpa mandi sehingga pukul 5 petang untuk melaksanakan tugas.

Selepas pukul 5 petang hari berkenaan mereka dihantar dengan bas (kos bas RM1,000 sehari dan ada lebih lima bas disediakan) ke hotel untuk daftar masuk. Setiap hari, bas akan ambil dan hantar ke LPM. Lucunya, hotel yang disediakan di Shah Alam, mesyuarat di Jalan Duta. Mengapa mesyuarat tidak terus dibuat di hotel berkenaan?

Bayangkan pembuangan masa dan keletihan yang dialami oleh guru. Pada hari terakhir mesyuarat pula guru dibiarkan terkontang-kanting menguruskan pengangkutan ke stesen bas selepas pukul 5 petang untuk pulang ke destinasi. Ini kerana guru tidak dibenarkan menginap pada malam berkenaan walaupun layak berbuat demikian kerana tamat tugas pukul 5 petang.

n Pemilihan hotel yang tidak menepati standard keselamatan mesyuarat kategori sulit.

Mulai tahun ini LPM tidak lagi peduli dengan ciri keselamatan panel mesyuarat. Misalnya, atas alasan kos LPM memilih hotel bujet yang tidak ada CCTV, kawalan keselamatan, kemudahan letak kereta dan hotel di kawasan hitam sebagai pilihan.

Umpamanya, pada Mac lalu, LPM mengadakan mesyuarat di sebuah hotel di Lorong Haji Taib. Hal ini amat memalukan guru kerana ‘diganggu’ oleh penghuni lorong-lorong berkenaan sewaktu ingin berekreasi di kawasan sekitar hotel.

Sebenarnya banyak lagi perubahan dilakukan oleh LPM sekarang. Pengarah juga tidak pernah melawat/memantau perjalanan mesyuarat untuk melihat sendiri kepayahan guru yang ingin menyumbang bakti kepada negara dan LPM khususnya. Hal ini berbeza dengan pengarah-pengarah lalu yang rajin menjenguk muka memberi motivasi kepada guru.

Kita mohon Kementerian Pelajaran, NUTP, CUEPACS dan sebagainya melihat isu ini. Kita bimbang jika keadaan ini dibiarkan lama kelamaan tiada guru yang ingin memberi sumbangan kepada LPM.

Akhirnya pegawai-pegawai LPM sendirilah yang menyiapkan tugasan membina item, memeriksa kertas dan sebagainya. Akhirnya kesan lebih besar adakah standard kualiti kertas soalan yang dihasilkan memenuhi piawaian antara bangsa yang diuar-uarkan?




ARKIB : 21/04/2010
Kecewa kenaikan pangkat di Institut Pendidikan Guru

SAYA telah berkhidmat di Institut Pendidikan Guru (IPG) selama tujuh tahun. Pada tahun 2006, Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Mohd. Najib Tun Abdul Razak (ketika itu Timbalan Perdana Menteri) mengumumkan seluruh institut perguruan dinaikkan taraf kepada Institut Pendidikan Guru (IPG).

Sehubungan itu, semua pensyarah dinaikkan taraf. Pensyarah gred DG41 bakal dinaikkan ke gred DG44 dan seterusnya hingga ke gred DG54 atau JUSA.

Sebahagian kenaikan gred itu telah dilaksanakan pada tahun 2009. Kenaikan itu dilaksanakan mengikut Fasa 1, Fasa 2 dan Fasa 3. Saya tergolong dalam Fasa 3. Golongan Fasa 1 dan 2 terdiri daripada pensyarah DG48 ke atas. Kenaikan pemangkuan jawatan dalam Fasa 1 dan 2 telah pun disahkan kenaikan pangkat mereka.

Malangnya, kenaikan saya dari DG44 ke DG48 belum lagi bermula. Telah tiga kali dokumen peribadi diminta oleh KUKP IPG dan dihantar ke Bahagian Pendidikan Guru (BPG). Namun sehingga hari ini tiada perkembangan positif.

Apabila ditanya pihak berkenaan di BPG, mereka mengatakan segala maklumat itu telah dihantar ke Bahagian Sumber, Kementerian Pelajaran Malaysia (KPM). Apabila saya bertanya di Bahagian Sumber KPM, mereka memberitahu tidak menerima apa-apa maklumat Fasa 3 dari BPG.

Saya berasa sangat kecil hati dan terhina diperlakukan seperti ini. Telah tujuh tahun berkhidmat di IPG dan 10 tahun dalam gred DG41, tetapi belum menerima hak pemangkuan sebagaimana dijanjikan.

Lebih berkecil hati apabila melihat rakan-rakan yang baharu tiga tahun berkhidmat di IPG telah dinaikkan ke gred DG48, sedangkan permulaan gred DG41 sama dengan saya.

Saya rasa ini satu penganiayaan oleh BPG terhadap kakitangannya. Hal ini tidak sepatutnya berlaku. Saya berharap pihak berkenaan dalam Kementerian Pelajaran dapat memberi perhatian terhadap aduan ini.


Kuala Lumpur

Kluang, Johor.

Sharing The Nation

23 04 2010

After the article on the Yang Berhormats who are not quite Yang Berhormat, let’s now ponder about “Sharing The Nation” that Zainah Anwar has written.

What do we share, how do we share, what policies there must be to ensure an equitable sharing of the nation. Would single-stream schooling or Satu Sekolah Untuk Semua (SSS) be part of the sharing of the nation, the getting out of self-imposed isolationism that even American leaders abandoned in their history.

Does the New Economic Model now being aired for public feedback and already discussed in one post here earlier show equitable sharing of the nation. The key word is “equitable”, ladies and gentemen. It means “fair, just, valid in equity as opposed to law” – Oxford English dictionary.

Yes, as the writer says, “More than promises are needed”. It needs strong political will on certain issues, including corruption. It needs balls.

Let’s talk it out:



Sunday April 4, 2010

More than promises needed

The realities on the ground have changed; our political leaders and governing institutions need to undertake the transformation needed.

I wonder what Tunku Abdul Rahman, Tun Razak and Tun Hussein would say of this country if they were alive today. Did they ever imagine that come 2010, some controversial politicians would have become the poster boys of what portends for Malaysia?

Could they have imagined that 53 years after independence and 40 years after the New Economic Policy, that this beloved country of ours is worn out by these figures flying the flag of race and religion? And that it is their voices that some in authority seem to be listening to? Not the voices of Malaysians who believe in our founding fathers’ vision of a modern, democratic, secular, culturally pluralistic and inclusive political community?

Has Malaysia really lost its middle way, as many believe? Have we forever lost the path so painstakingly negotiated and treaded by our leaders of the past to manage an ethnically divided society?

Last Wednesday, as I passed a few neighbours on their morning walk, I overheard the now common refrain of frustration, “Well, those with money can leave the country, how about us? Is there a future for us here?”

I would have liked to be able to say a resounding yes to them, but I really don’t know any more.

The message we seem to be getting is that we just don’t care about you. Those who have a differing opinion, be it on Islam in general or on the Allah issue or the caning issue in particular, will be silenced.

Police reports are lodged against them and they face investigation under the Syariah Criminal Offences Enactment, the Sedition Act, the Penal Code and the Printing Presses and Publications Act.

Nor can there be any rational public discussion on the so-called “social contract” and “Ketuanan Melayu”. Protests have been organised to whip up Malay sentiment against any attempts to discuss concerns arising from the incremental transformation of the Constitutional idea of “the special position of the Malays” into Malay supremacy.

How did we come to this?

Yes, a constitutional “bargain” was struck in 1957. It granted the non-Malays citizenship on the principle of jus soli for those born after independence and five-year residential status requirement for those above 18 and born before 1957. It was agreed that their property would be protected, their economic activity left unhindered, their culture respected and the use of their mother tongue assured.

In return, the Alliance leaders reached consensus that Malay would be the national language, the economically backward Malays should gain a proportionate share of the economic pie, and that the delineation of consti tuencies would facilitate a Malay majority in the legislatures to reflect the history and demographics of the nation.

The governing mechanism chosen was a coalition of ethnic-based parties; and through an elite accommodation process its leaders were to sit behind closed doors to thrash out problems and conflicts and negotiate a compromise solution. A zero-sum game was eschewed. Each community accepted that it would win some and lose some.

But 12 years after independence, the Malays felt that their side of the constitutional bargain remained unfulfilled. While the non-Malays were granted citizenship, took part in the political process and pursued their economic activities unhindered, the Malays felt excluded and marginalised from the country’s economic growth and development.

Racial riots broke out on May 13, 1969. For the prescient Australian scholar of Malaysia, Professor Clive Kessler, this was just a symptom. Writing in the September 2009 and February 2010 issues of Off the Edge, he called this a fundamental “regime crisis” .

The riots, he said, marked the collapse of what can now be seen as Malaysia’s first post-independence governing formula and political dispensation.

A new governing arrangement was devised. The New Economic Policy (NEP) was launched, designed to eradicate poverty irrespective of race and to restructure society by eliminating the identification of race with economic function. The Rukunegara was drawn up to rebuild a sense of national unity and purpose – of a government and its citizens committed to building a democratic, just and progressive society with a liberal approach to her rich and diverse cultural traditions.

Yes, in those days, progressive and liberal were national aspirations! It all sounded noble, reasonable, and promising.

The framework chosen to govern the country was still inter-communal, but this time through an expanded grand coalition of parties, drawing into federal government a total of 13 parties, seven from Peninsular Malaysia, four from Sarawak and two from Sabah.

Malaysia entered a new political phase. The avuncular first prime minister who saw himself as the happiest prime minister in the world, but insulated from the simmering discontent on the ground, was retired. Tun Abdul Razak Hussein, his long-time loyal deputy, took over, leading a new “Umno-centred and Malay-led power bloc that was eager and ready to preside over a strong state”, as Prof Kessler put it.

At that time, the strong state was justified as necessary for the successful implementation of an unprecedented social engineering project of rebuilding national unity and affirmative action for a majority population left behind.

But what was a necessary policy instrument to redress a historical injustice eventually became the mechanism to sustain Malay dominance. A new language of “Ketuanan Melayu” was grafted onto the Malay political consciousness as the NEP neared its end in 1990.

As the Kok Lanas politician Abdullah Ahmad said in his infamous “Ketuanan Melayu” speech in Singapore in 1986, “The NEP must continue to sustain Malay dominance in the political system in line with the contract of 1957.” And thus the die was cast as Umno politicians and Malay nationalists and journalists on this side of the Causeway translated “Malay dominance” into “Ketuanan Melayu”, an idea of one racial group’s supremacy over others, as something that was agreed upon by the founding fathers of the nation at the time of independence.

It was presented as a “done deal”, constitutionally embedded, sacrosanct and not to be questioned.

But as it was in 1986 and as it is now, the idea of “Ketuanan Melayu” sits uncomfortably among many Malaysians, be they Malays, Chinese, Indians, Ibans, Kadazan-Dusun, Bajaus, Orang Asal, Eurasians.

It is a very different idea from the simple political reality that Malays as the majority population of this country will be the politically dominant group. And different from the constitutional notion of the “special position of the Malays” which legitimised affirmative action as a temporary special measure to enable a historically disadvantaged group to catch up.

This is a principle that most Malaysians remain committed to, the same principle used to demand for women to hold at least 30% of decision-making positions.

But 40 years of affirmative action policies have not achieved the desired results for the Malays. There is an urgent need for a rational and intelligent public dialogue on the New Economic Policy. But this cannot begin if people label those who question, challenge, raise the shortcomings, abuses in implementation, and unintended consequences of the policy and those who offer alternatives as pengkhia nat bangsa (traitors to the race) and other such sinister accusations in order to silence the debate.

In Ooi Kee Beng’s book of the late Tun Dr Ismail’s memoirs, the former Deputy Prime Minister wrote that reaching agreement on the special position of the Malays “proved a less intractable problem because the leaders of the Alliance realised the practical necessity of giving the Malays a handicap if they were to compete on equal terms with the other races. The only point of controversy was the duration of the ‘special position’ – should there be a time limit or should it be permanent. I made a suggestion which was accepted, that the question be left to the Malays themselves, because I felt that as more and more Malays became educated and gained self-confidence, they themselves would do away with this ‘special position’ because in itself this ‘special position’ is a slur on the ability of the Malays and only to be tolerated because it is necessary as a temporary measure to ensure their survival in the modern competitive world: a world to which only those in the urban areas had been exposed.”

If the venerable Tun Ismail were alive today, what would he say to find that the Malay “special position” that he believed was to be a temporary measure has been elevated to “Ketuanan Melayu”, and transformed into a permanent, sacrosanct contract, sealed in stone? How could nation-building based on supremacist thinking ever take place in an ethnically divided society?

Obviously, we are into another “regime crisis”. The realities on the ground have changed; but some of our political leaders and political and governing institutions seem impervious to the transformation desperately needed.

The NEP era political phase and governing mechanism exhaled its last breath on March 8, 2008. The Opposition have still not coalesced into a viable trusted alternative with a common political vision of Malaysia. How the DAP and PAS could ever find an enduring common ground remains an unanswered question. The prime minister is offering “1Malaysia” as a new guiding principle.

Too much water has flowed under the bridge that it needs more than rhetoric, exhortations, showcase events and one-off promises of reform to renew the faith that this is for real.

With elections two to three years away, is there enough time, enough political will and courage for the politicians to exemplify that they indeed are able to put Humpty Dumpty back together again?

Yang Berhormat?

22 04 2010

Now, why on earth “responsible” people want to behave in an irresponsible and unbecoming manner. They include Yang Berhormats shouting and abusing. What a joke. They are law makers, for goodness sake. Shouting and abusive in the law-making house, the State Assembly. No decency. No decorum. No respect for the law-making State Assembly which they are part of.

They should behave properly to add to the sanctity of the laws they pass. They are responsible for the laws passed whether they are the ruling or opposition parties. If they are opposed to the laws being discussed, just state the reasons, their statements are recorded in the State Assembly or Parliamentary records, that is more than enough in the discharge of their duties as ADUNs or MPs. There should be no shouting, standing up on the table, no fracas or rowdiness. Extremely unacceptable behaviour.

Why do we elect the rowdy ones to office in the first place? Why do we give such fellows our vote? Think, people, think. Value our votes.

Now that they are in, what do we do about them? What do you think? Let’s talk here.

Good of HRH Sultan Perak drawing the attention of the people to such nonsense. Shameful acts, those “YBs”. Interesting that Pakatan Assemblymen “did not receive invitations” to the Sultan’s birthday function.

And others who go abroad bad-mouthing Malaysia. Even the Aussies now want to teach us about our legal system. How dare they, those 50 Aussie MPs, trying to tell us how to run DS Anwar’s court case? And we having to dance to US tune.

The Star Online has the story:


Tuesday April 20, 2010

Perak Ruler unhappy with those who disgrace Malaysia at international forums


KUALA KANGSAR: The Sultan of Perak Sultan Azlan Shah expressed regret at the actions of certain individuals and groups who disgraced their own country at international forums.

This, he said, gave an opportunity to outside powers to interfere in the internal affairs of the country.

“I call on the people to use their wisdom for the sake of the nation and not to be influenced by their emotion based on desire which would eventually be to the detriment of the country,” he said at the investiture and pledging of loyalty ceremony in conjunction with his 82nd birthday at Istana Iskandariah here yesterday.

Sultan Azlan Shah noted that all members, be it in Parliament or the state assembly, should respect the sanctity of the august House.

“Those who are called the Yang Berhormat should show exemplary behaviour,” he said.

“It is embarrassing that proceedings in the august House are done in an environment filled with shouts and abuses,” said Sultan Azlan Shah.

“It is also an insult to the assembly if members bring placards with degrading words and hurl abuse at each other,” he added.

At the same event, Raja Muda of Perak Raja Dr Nazrin Shah said elements of ill-mannered behaviour by people in high positions and professions were not happening on the streets or in markets but in places that should be regarded highly and respected.

Dr Nazrin said courtesy was the key factor that determines the rise and fall of a country and its leaders.

“Politeness plays an important role in shaping a society let alone a prosperous and steady country,” he said.

Perak Mentri Besar Datuk Seri Dr Zambry Abd Kadir said that the Barisan Nasional government would do its best to maintain peace and harmony in the state while continuing with its development.

Dr Zambry noted that he had during the March 31 state assembly, called on Pakatan Rakyat state assemblymen not to jeopardise the people’s welfare with their never-ending politicking.

At the investiture ceremony Sultan of Johor Sultan Ibrahim Ismail Almarhum Sultan Iskandar headed the list of 912 people conferred with awards and medals in conjunction with Sultan Azlan Shah’s birthday.

Deputy Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin was conferred the Darjah Kebesaran Seri Paduka Sultan Azlan Shah Perak Yang Teramat Dimulia (SPSA) which carries the title Datuk Seri Diraja.

No Pakatan state assemblymen were present during the ceremony.

When contacted, state DAP chairman and Sitiawan assemblyman Datuk Ngeh Koo Ham said the Pakatan state assemblymen did not receive any invitations to the ceremony.

“We have been waiting for the invitations but none of us received any,” he said.

State secretary Datuk Seri Dr Abdul Rahman Hashim could not be reached to verify Ngeh’s claim.

New Way of Saying

20 04 2010

Note: This SSS site promotes the use of Bahasa Malaysia. It is in line with our mission and with Article 152 on its role as the National Language of the country. But articles may appear in the English language so that as many people as possible understand them. However, SSS Admin replies are always in the language in which the comments are made.


The Kempen SSS manner of saying things will be changed slightly from now on. The academic and serious articles will be interspersed with lighter ones and we will try to bring out as many posts or articles as possible.

We plan to vary the subjects slightly in order to cater to a wider range of readers. Subjects that have any bearing on unity, racial polarisation and the the forging of a united and cohesive Bangsa Malaysia will be discussed. These are the declared objective of the single-stream education or Satu Sekolah Untuk Semua (SSS).

The articles need not be very long. We hope to cover more on current subjects. Any comments on the presentation and on the articles we put out are welcome. And the comments can be as short or as long as you wish.

This time we publish an article on what is claimed to be “the influx to Chinese schools”. It is based on numbers obtained from an ex-Chairman of the Parent Teachers Association of one school and in a predominantly Chinese electorate. See if you agree or disagree with the views given.


From http://www.nst.com.my/articles/23TEACH/Article/index_html

Why the influx to Chinese schools?


By Lee Yew Meng

I WAS registered with St Xavier’s Institution for Year One in 1961. My father, who was Chinese-educated but speaks English, reasoned that only those who studied in English schools could get office jobs and four-figure salaries. A chief clerk was a very serious appointment in the 1950s and 1960s.

There were Malay schools, English schools, Chinese schools and Tamil schools. I can now vividly recall that we used to sneer at Chinese school students because of their pronunciation. They invariably allowed us to get away with these juvenile insults.

Those were the times when being educated meant being able to speak and write in English.

Now, some 50 years on, I live in a constituency with an 86.7 per cent (2008 Election Commission figures) Chinese electorate and we have one primary and two secondary schools in the taman.

My second child was enrolled in Year One in 1998. The racial mix of the pupils then was representative of the constituency, albeit with a few more non-Chinese.

By 2007, when my next child started school, I saw a stark difference. I scrutinised the student register and found that fewer than 30 per cent of the students were Chinese. Three years later when she was in Year Four, there were only nine Chinese students in a class of 44. In the entire Year Four class of 129, only 18 or 14 per cent were Chinese.

Early this year, my fourth child was enrolled, and this time it was like I had moved to another place. I could hardly spot a Chinese face. In a class of 42, there were only four Chinese students.

There are 89 students in Year One with eight Chinese, or nine per cent. The total school population is 550, with 11 per cent Chinese. These figures were provided by the parent-teacher association’s ex-chairman.

Many of us would have heard of the large influx of parents registering their children in Chinese schools in the past 10 years. I thought the percentages quoted were a gross exaggeration, but I have now experienced first-hand that it is true.

Schools are built in housing estates for the convenience of parents. Then, why is it that so many parents prefer to spend up to two or three hours each day sending and picking their children up from Chinese vernacular schools?

(It is more dramatic when we consider parents in south Johor sending their children to schools in Singapore.) All the bigger Chinese schools are oversubscribed and many parents have been turned away.

I have heard of those arming themselves with various letters of recommendation from an assortment of personalities as “insurance” against rejection. Can we assume that the Education Ministry has done sufficient studies followed by serious brainstorming on what’s the attraction of these Chinese schools?

Is the class environment, library, sports facilities, toilets and the canteen food so much better? Are the teachers better trained and more motivated? Don’t they all have the same salary scheme?

Or are parents concerned about or opposed to what they believe are misguided notions of nationalism in national schools? Perhaps a combination of all these?

There was a time in the 1980s when sekolah jenis kebangsaan (Cina) were just doing okay and the independent secondary Chinese schools were suffering from low intake. This year, even the independent schools had to turn away students.

As the Constitution allows it, there’s nothing wrong with parents preferring their children to be imbued with Confucian-inspired values. And perhaps to also have formal instruction with Chinese culture. But if enrolling at SJK (C) schools means being enrolled “in better schools with better education instruction”, then we have a situation, Putrajaya.

The predicament is getting serious. The plain fact is that it is wrong that national schools are increasingly being shunned by the Chinese and by more and more Malays and Indians, while SJK (C) schools are horrendously oversubscribed. Classroom populations of 50 to 52 at SJK (C) schools are the norm.

I hope our national schools have not given up. In any marketplace with more than one player, we have to be as good or better as the other to stay in business, and in this case — relevant.

If good Chinese language instruction is needed, provide it. Like we should for good English, Tamil, Science or Mathematics. Or how much has it got to do with this remark made by a Malay parent and endorsed by another that, “I would have sent my child to a sekolah agama rakyat if that was my intention”, at a focus group in reference to attitudes of some school authorities?

The mission is an uncomplicated and unadulterated quest to provide a strong foundation for our young minds through well thought-out and tested syllabi.

I am now reminded that although SXI was a true-blue Christian missionary school, non-Christians were never compelled to convert or made to feel different. The Brothers, bless their souls, just concentrated on their mission. We used to sing Malaysia, Kita Sudah Berjaya with gusto; but was that another Malaysia?

The writer, a social observer, has been a marketing practitioner for over three decades

SSS, NEM and National Unity

14 04 2010

Note: While this SSS site promotes the use of Bahasa Malaysia in line with Article 152 on its role as the National Language of the country, articles may appear in the English language in oder that the message reaches our target audience. However, SSS Admin replies are always in the language in which the comments are made.


The single-stream schooling or Satu Sekolah Untuk Semua (SSS) proposal aims at the creation of a united and cohesive Bangsa Malaysia, in the hope of bringing long-term harmony, peace and progress in the country. The New Economic Model (NEM) planned by the Government carrying the slogan of 1Malaysia aims at economic progress, a developed nation status by 2020, peace and prosperity in the country. The two are synergistic. Hopefully, they can be synchronistic as well. They can, if the NEM incorporates plans for changing the current three education systems (national schools, national type Chinese schools, national type Tamil schools) into a single education system (national schools only).

The Malays and the Bumiputeras of Sabah and Sarawak are far behind economically and educationally compared to the Chinese largely due to the incidence of history. British colonial policies had done the Malays/ Bumiputeras up quite a bit, coming out at independence owning hardly 1% wealth and, at best, only 5% in the professional jobs of the country in which they are 70% of the population. Historically and culturally, the Malays/ Bumiputeras were a nation of seafarers, engaged in barter trading, mainly for the purpose of daily subsistence, not having a culture of profit-taking or trading on the basis of weights and measures, not of business and the zealousness of making money and wealth accumulation. But with the educational opportunities provided under the New Economic Policy (NEP) starting in 1970, more Malays/ Bumiputeras have better education and now realise the need to speak up and make demands, including on the NEM, for bridging the gap between the Bumiputeras and the Chinese who control the economy, so that there is an equitable distribution of wealth and representation in all the professions, and consequently, less grudging and discontentment. Hopefully, those actions would translate into a harmonious, united and progressive situation in the country.

There has been a lack of inter-ethnic co-operation on what has been called “the restructuring of society”. Willingness to impart business knowledge and experience may not have been forthcoming due to the tradition of exclusivity of clan associations and business guilds that have been written about by researcher Janet T Landa (2008). She spoke about the “club-like ethnically homogeneous middleman group (EHMG) for the provision of infrastructure, essential for middleman entrepreneurship. Chinese merchants embedded in the EHMG were able to economize on transaction costs, and this gave them a differential advantage to out-compete other ethnic groups to appropriate merchant roles.”

And, as far as the SSS is concerned, the proponents of vernacular schools want to cling to the languages of Chinese and Indian civilisations.

All the above may be due to a lack of understanding and respect for the dignity of the Malay civilisation and the Malay language (Bahasa Malaysia). In view of these, we now reproduce write-ups on the Malay civilisation and the Malay language.


A. Early history and Nation State

The “Early History” volume of “The Encyclopedia of Malaysia” edited by Professor Dr Nik Hassan Shuhaimi includes articles by Professors and PhD degree holders at University of Malaya, National University of Malaysia, National University of Singapore, University of Hawai, Australian National University, etc. Additionally, the book, “The Malay Civilisation” by Mohd Arof Ishak, published by The Historical Society of Malaysia, has a bibliography stating scores of books written by academicians and others world wide, quoting ancient documents and manuscripts some of which were discovered only in recent times. They provide a good and reliable insight into the history of this country, the Malay language and civilisation.

Here are some of the points stated in those books that show that the Malays and the large family of “Rumpun Melayu” have been in this country, Malaysia, and in this region, Southeast Asia, since the beginning of human settlement in this area, several thousand years ago:

1. The Malays (including the Bumiputeras of Sabah and Sarawak, as well as the aborigines of Peninsular Malaysia, all of whom belong to the same Rumpun Melayu) were the original inhabitants of Malaysia and also of Southeast Asia. A Chinese writer named Ch’en Lun-chiung used the word “Wu-lai-yu” (“Melayu”) in his writings which were completed in 1730. This was acknowledged by no other than the well-respected historian, Professor Wang Gung-wu, in his “Community and Nation”, 1992, pp 158-167. Before that the Mainland Chinese often used the word “barbarians” when referring to ALL others outside “the Middle Kingdom”, including those who conquered and ruled them – the Mongols for about 80 years and the Manchus (Manchuria became a part of China only after World War II) for several hundred years until the 20th Century. The Malays had existed as a civilisation several thousand years ago.

2. According to Ch’en Lun-chiung, people in the following places were all known as “Wu-lai-yu”: the islands of Luzon, Panay, Cebu, Mindanao, Sulu (all in present day Philippines), Banjarmasin, Brunei (in Borneo), Makasar (Sulawesi island), Maluku, Karimon (east of Sumatera), Kalapa (Jakarta), Patani (south Thailand), Kelantan, Trengganu, Pahang, Johor and Malacca. Also, people in the Asian mainland in Cambodia and Vietnam. This was also acknowledged by Professor Wang Gung-wu.

3. The Malay race is a large, ancient family of many groups, each group having its own name, like Aceh, Bajau, Bidayuh, Bugis, Chamorro, Iban, Ifugao, Kadazan, Maori, Merina, Suluk, etc. They may therefore be known as Achenese Malay, Bajau Malay, Bidayuh Malay and so on. In Peninsular Malaysia there are those who are of Javanese, Bugis, Aceh etc descent but “Malay” has been an apt description of them. The term “Rumpun Melayu” aptly describes the Malays, the Indonesians and the Filipinos. Indeed, the Filipinos called Jose Rizal, their independence fighter during the Spanish colonial days, as “The Great Malay” and one Filipino history book is titled just that.

4. Many linguistic studies have been carried out by Westerners since the 19th Century and they have concluded that the various ethnic and sub-ethnic groups that settled this vast area known as the Malay Archipelago are indeed of one and the same race – the Malays. Modern linguistic studies started from the 18th Century linguist, Sir William Jones. The family of language is determined by the grammar and vocabulary used.

5. In proto-historic and ancient times there have been various Malay states in Southeast Asia. What has been commonly known was the Srivijaya Empire centred in Sumatra 600-1200 AD. Another Malay state was also established in the present day Jambi area 4th – 13th Cent AD. Malay civilisation centred in Kedah had been active during that period as well. Kedah had appeared in Chinese records in 638 AD when it sent an ambassador to China. “Pan-pan”, believed to be in the Kelantan or Trengganu area, had been in Chinese records even earlier as they were in contact with China in 530 AD and 535 AD.

6. In 607 AD, a Chinese envoy sent abroad by a Sui Dynasty Emperor recorded having passed by Langkasuka (believed to be in present day Patani) and reached an inland kingdom called “Chi tu” or “Red Earth Land”, believed to be in Kelantan. In 671 AD, a Chinese Buddhist monk Yiqing on a pilgrimage to the brith place of Buddha in India, stayed 6 months to learn Sanskrit in Srivijaya, then sailed to “Malayu” in southeast Sumatra, then to Kedah. “Yiqing clearly stated that his voyages were all undertaken in ships belonging to Malay Kings” – Dr John Miskic, National University of Singapore, Encyclopaedia of Malaysia, pg 83. The Malays have been good hosts since ancient times and that kind nature must not be exploited.

7. The original centre of Malay civiliation is the Malay Archipelago of Southeast Asia – the largest group of islands in the entire world – measuring from end to end longer than the length of Mainland China. This Malay Archipelago comprises Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei, Philippines, small islands in the South China Sea, Singapore, a part of Peninsular Malaya that became part of south Thailand, and several islands south of Myanmar. All these areas have originally been settled by the Malays.

8. Taiwan is also an island very important in respect of the origin of the Malays. Several studies have been done in that respect.The Cocos/ Keelings and Christmas Island (now a part of Australia) were also part of the Malay Archipelago. Large parts of Vietnam and Cambodia on the Asian Mainland were also centres of ancient Malay civilisation. The Department of Museums and Antiquities held a Seminar in 2004 on “The Campa Malay Manuscript, Heritage of a Malay Civilisation” that existed (and remnants still exist even now) in Indo-China, specifically Vietnam and Cambodia. (The proceedings of the Seminar were published by the Department and is on sale).

9. Among the works of Professors, PhD degree holders, etc used as reference materials in the book published by the Historical Society of Malaysia are: Wang Gung-wu, “Community and Nation”, 1992; Charles F. Keyes, “The Golden Peninsula”, 1977; Wolfram Eberhard, “A History of China”, 1977; Peter Bellwood, “Man’s Conquest of the Pacific”, 1979; Kenneth Hall & John K. Whitmore, “Explorations in Early Southeast Asian History; The Origins of Southeast Asian Statecraft”, 1986; and scores of others.

10. A nation state has existed in Malaysia since ancient times and the leader of the organisation promoting Chinese schools should not try to inject the idea of a “multi-nation state” like he did recently. We are a multi-racial country (70% Bumiputeras, 30% Chinese, Indians and others) but calling Malaysia a multi-nation state, whatever it may mean, is not acceptable.


B. The Malays and “Rumpun Melayu”

The Large Family of Malays and the Malay Language –

The Malay language is very ancient and comprises of a huge family of languages. Whereas the Malays (Rumpun Melayu of 350 million people) constitute only 6% of the total population of the world (6 billion people), the large family of Malay languages (totalling 1,268) represent 22% of the number of languages in the world (totalling 6,000).

These are actual languages in the scientific and linguistic sense. If dialects are included, the number is larger still.

Scientists who have studied the family of Malay languages include the following:

1. 1772-75 Dr Reinhold Forster who accompanied Captain Cook in his 2nd voyage to the South Pacific. He compiled a list of words from 11 languages in several islands there and compared them with words of the same meaning in the Malay language and with 3 languages in South America. He found them having similarities with the Malay language but none at all with the South American languages.

2. 1776-80 Anderson, another scientist travelling with Captain Cook studied the numericals used in various islands of Polynesia and in Madagascar and compared them with those used in the Malay language. He found very clear similarities among them.

3. About 1800, a Spanish Jesuit priest, Abbe Lorenzo Herves, confirmed that the Malay language, the language used in Madagascar, and the languages of the Polynesian islands belong to the same family.This priest was recorded as the person who had made “the most remarkable discovery in the history of linguistic studies, being the identification of one family of spoken languages, namely the Malay and the Polynesian languages, which were spread very far and wide from the Island of Madagascar across a 208 degree angle to Easter Island” – L. Andrews, “A Dictionary of the Hawaiian Language”, 1977, pg 7.

4. Some years after that, a European scholar, William Marsden, also identified the oneness of the languages referred to by Herves and called them “The Great Polynesian” (Language).

5. In 1836, a leading Linguist, William Von Humboldt, carried out a large and comprehensive study, comparing 9 languages in the family of the Malay language – Malay, Malagasy (Madagascar), Javanese, Buginese, Tagalog (Philippines), Maori, Tonga, Tahitian and Hawaiian. He concluded that these languages belong to the same civilization – the Malay civilization.

Given below are the number of Malay languages found in selected areas:

Peninsular Malaysia : 1 (+4 orang asli languages)
Sumatra : 22 languages
Java : 3 languages
Philippines :160 languages
Borneo :153 languages
Sulawesi :114 languages
Taiwan : 23 languages
Madagascar : 11 languages.

The Spread of the Malays –

How old is this Malay race, Malay Polynesia or Austronesia race?

In the 20th Century, various studies have been carried out on the migration and movement of the Malay people who have crossed the Pacific and Indian Oceans. Linguistic and archaeological studies especially since the 1950s have contributed a lot towards finding the age of the Malay race.

G.W Grace, a linguist of the 1960s, placed the origin of the Malay language at between 3,000 BC – 2,500 BC i.e 4,500 – 5,000 years ago – William Howells, “The Pacific Islanders”, 1973, pg 104. Isidore Dyen, a linguist of the 1950s, explained that Malayo-Polynesia is a major branch in the Austronesia (Malay) language and is of the opinion that the Malayo-Polynesian language alone is older than the Indo-European language which scholars have said appeared around 2,500 BC. Dyen believes that the Malayo-Polynesian people had started moving around and spread even well before 2,500 BC – William Howells, pg 104.

R. Ferrel a linguist expert on the natives of Taiwan, wrote in the 1960s that the Atayalic language in Taiwan grew out of proto Malay language (the original Malay language) since 4,000 BC-3,000 BC i.e 5,000-6,000 years ago. Ferrel is also of the opinion that the Tsouic language in Taiwan had grown out of proto-Malay language at about the same period. The original Malay language is therefore much older.

Many stuidies have led to the hypothesis that Taiwan / south China is the origin of the Malay race. Peter Bellwood is a well known supporter of that and believes that the spread of the original Malay language occurred between 5,000 and 7,000 years ago and that this took place in the centre of the Malay world, i.e an area that could not be identified but in the range of islands between Taiwan, Philippines and East Indonesia – Peter Bellwood, “Man’s Conquest of the Pacific, 1979.

This means that the Malay race is one of the oldest in the world.

Linguist William Howells himself had placed the first movement of the Malay people outward at 4,000 BC. So, it is clear that various scholars and linguistic experts have put forward the view that the Malay race is an ancient one and is about 7,000 years old, or even older.

Archaeologists have put out archaeological findings which showed that the Tonga islands were the first settlement of Malays in the Polynesian Islands after they arrived from Fiji Island. Samoa became the second island. These were estimated at around 1,000 BC.

The Malays reached the Easter Island around 500 AD despite it being the only island and so far away. Carbon dating of artifacts had shown that the Malays from Marquesas Islands reached and settled in Hawai around 750 AD – Joseph Feher, “Hawai, A Pictorial History”, 1969, pg 27. By 1,000 AD, the bigger islands of the Hawai chain had all been settled.

They arrived in boats built by inhabitants of the Marquesas Islands; the boats were as long as 18-24 meters and each could carry 30-40 people. From Tahiti, the Malays moved to Cook Islands and eventually touched the islands of New Zealand around 1,000 AD.

The fact that the Malays had discovered and settled all the islands of the Pacific Ocean, which is so vast, is testimony to the excellence in sailing and navigation skills of the Malays. This is a feat not comparable to any others up to this day. All researchers and scholars agree that all the islands of the Pacific Ocean, however small or isolated, bear marks of having been visited and settled by the Malays in a period of time stretching 3,700 years or a little longer.

The Malay Archipelago was the birth place of Malay civilisation. American Professor Wihelm G. Solheim had produced a number of books and notes on the prehistory of Southeast Asia – Mohd Arof, “The Malay Civilization”, 2007, pg 22, 96. Professor Solheim said that the Malays had been living a culture of seafarers and traders, possessing sailing and navigational skills that enabled them to traverse the entire seas of the Malay Archipelago since 5,000 BC or 7,000 years ago.

According to Professor Solheim, the specific place in the Malay Archipelago with the highest possibility of being the origin of the Malay people is the area where today is found the Bugis, Bajau and other Malay ethnic groups that have been very active seafarers and traders for ages in history. They have made the Sulu Seas, fringed with the large islands of Borneo (Kalimantan), Sulawesi and Mindanao, as the busiest seafaring area. They spread to the Pacific Ocean, starting from eastern Indonesia, before 5,000 BC. They moved north as traders through Philippines, Taiwan and southern China, reaching Korea and Japan.

Professor Solheim also believed that the Cham Malays who still occupy parts of Vietnam and Cambodia to this day had moved there from the Malay Archipelago after about 2,000 BC. Solheim also stated that the Malay language evolved in the Malay Archipelago at the end of the Ice Age w hen the Malay Archipelago took shape about 8,000 years ago. The latest research on this subject done by Stephen Oppenheimer, “Eden in the East”, 2001, strongly supported the views put forward by Solheim.

Ancient Chinese records written as early as 3rd Century AD mentioned “Kun Lun” people (ancient Chinese terminology for those coming by sea from the direction of Southeast Asia) conducting trade between east and west. Those records mentioned the boats used by the Malay traders. According to those records, the Malay boats were large, about 170 feet (51 meters) long. In the Polynesian islands of the south Pacific, the well known English voyager, Captain Cook, himself saw and recorded boats of about 108 feet (32 meters) which could carry 300 sailors.


C. The Spread of the Malays –

The Malay Continent: Land and Sea World (Tanah Air) –

How old is this Malay race, Malay Polynesia or Austronesia race?

In the 20th Century, various studies have been carried out on the migration and movement of the Malay people who have crossed the Pacific and Indian Oceans. Linguistic and archaeological studies especially since the 1950s have contributed a lot towards finding the age of the Malay race. G.W Grace, a linguist of the 1960s, placed the origin of the Malay language at between 3,000 BC – 2,500 BC i.e 4,500 – 5,000 years ago – William Howells, “The Pacific Islanders”, 1973, pg 104. Isidore Dyen, a linguist of the 1950s, explained that Malayo-Polynesia is a major branch in the Austronesia (Malay) language and is of the opinion that the Malayo-Polynesian language alone is older than the Indo-European language which scholars have said appeared around 2,500 BC. Dyen believes that the Malayo-Polynesian people had started moving around and spread even well before 2,500 BC – William Howells, pg 104.

R. Ferrel a linguist expert on the natives of Taiwan, wrote in the 1960s that the Atayalic language in Taiwan grew out of proto Malay language (the original Malay language) since 4,000 BC – 3,000 BC i.e 5,000 – 6,000 years ago. Ferrel is also of the opinion that the Tsouic language in Taiwan had grown out of proto-Malay language at about the same period. The original Malay language is therefore much older.

Many studies have brought out the hypothesis that Taiwan / south China is the origin of the Malay race. Peter Bellwood is a well known supporter of that and believes that the spread of the original Malay language occurred between 5,000 and 7,000 years ago and that this took place in the centre of the Malay world, i.e an area that could not be identified but in the range of islands between Taiwan, Philippines and East Indonesia – Peter Bellwood, “Man’s Conquest of the Pacific, 1979. This means that the Malay race is one of the oldest in the world.

Linguist William Howells himself had placed the first movement of the Malay people outward at 4,000 BC. So, it is clear that various scholars and linguistic experts have put forward the view that the Malay race is an ancient one and is about 7,000 years old, or even older.

The archaeologists’ Views:

Archaeologists have put out archaeological findings which showed that the Tonga islands were the first settlement of Malays in the Polynesian Islands after they arrived from Fiji Island. Samoa became the second island. These were estimated at around 1,000 BC. The Malays reached the Easter Island around 500 AD despite it being the only island and so far away. Carbon dating of artifacts had shown that the Malays from Marquesas Islands reached and settled in Hawai around 750 AD – Joseph Feher, “Hawai, A Pictorial History”, 1969, pg 27. By 1,000 AD, the bigger islands of the Hawai chain had all been settled. They arrived in boats built by inhabitants of the Marquesas Islands; the boats were as long as 18 – 24 meters and each could carry 30 – 40 people.

From Tahiti, the Malays moved to Cook Islands and eventually touched the islands of New Zealand around 1,000 AD.

The fact that the Malays had discovered and settled all the islands of the Pacific Ocean, which is so vast, is testimony to the excellence in sailing and navigation skills of the Malays. This is a feat not comparable to any others up to this day. All researchers and scholars agree that all the islands of the Pacific Ocean, however small or isolated, bear marks of having been visited and settled by the Malays in a period of time stretching 3,700 years or a little longer.

The hypothesis that south China or Taiwan was the origin of Malay civilisation has been hotly disputed by those who believe that the Malay Archipelago was, in reality, the birth place of Malay civilisation. The latter includes the scolar Wihelm Solheim. He insisted that the Malays had been living a culture of seafarers and traders, possessing sailing and navigational skills that enabled them to traverse the entire seas of the Malay Archipelago since 5,000 BC or 7,000 years ago.

According to Solheim, the specific place in the Malay Archipelago with the highest possibility of being the origin of the Malay people is the area where today is found the Bugis, Bajau and other Malay ethnic groups that have been very active seafarers and traders for ages in history. They have made the Sulu Seas, fringed with the large islands of Borneo (Kalimantan), Sulawesi and Mindanao, as the busiest seafaring area. They spread to the Pacific Ocean, starting from eastern Indonesia, before 5,000 BC. They moved north as traders through Philippines, Taiwan and southern China, reaching Korea and Japan. Solheim also believed that the Cham Malays who still occupy parts of Vietnam and Cambodia to this day had moved there from the Malay Archipelago after about 2,000 BC. Solheim also stated that the Malay language evolved in the Malay Archipelago at the end of the Ice Age when the Malay Archipelago took shape about 8,000 years ago. The latest research on this subject done by Oppenheimer strongly supported the hypothesis put forward by Solheim.

Ancient Chinese records written as early as 3rd Century AD mentioned “Kun Lun” people (ancient Chinese terminology for those coming by sea from the direction of Southeast Asia) conducting trade between east and west. Those records spoke about the boats used by the Malay traders. According to those records, the Malay boats were large, about 170 feet (51 meters) long. In the Polynesian islands of the south Pacific, the well known English voyager, Captain Cook, himself saw and recorded boats of about 108 feet (32 meters) which could carry 300 sailors. And there were reports stating “in the year 945 an Arab sailor suddenly came into a fleet of 1,000 Malay boats in the act of piracy in the straits of Mozambique” -A.M Jones, “Africa and Indonesia”, 1964, pg 187.

Malay boats used for trade and voyages to the Indian Ocean region were referred to in 1st Century BC records as “large boats built from two round trees that are merged (dua batang pokok kayu bulat yang dicantumkan)”, an image similar to the type used by the inhabitants of Polynesian islands. One Chinese record on the “Kun Lun” (Malay) ships in the 3rd Century mentioned the size as “200 feet long and 20 feet high from the sea water surface.” The Malay boats could carry 600 – 700 people, with cargo of up to 900 ton, and each could be fitted with up to four sails .

New Economic Model and Long-Term Unity

1 04 2010

As a respite from the usual pros and cons on the subject of single-stream schooling or Satu Sekolah Untuk Semua (SSS), this time let us discuss the New Economic Model (NEM) which was announced, apparentky “for public airing” before finalisation in June, on 30.3.10. The NEM and SSS both have the same objective of bringing about long-term unity in the country.

Eminent blogger Jebat Must Die said a copy of the 200-page book on the NEM landed on his lap (that’s what eminence does to a blogger) and he has put out a brief analysis on it in his blog. We reproduce it below. It includes a comment concerning SSS.

Do comment as much as you can, dear readers. The NEM is going to be the life of the country for a long time to come. It’d better be good for the country as a whole and long-term unity must be clearly reflected as an achievable objective in that policy. All of you have a chance to say anything you think worth while in here so that the authorities may know how we citizens feel and take them into account when finalising the NEM in June 2010.

We also publish extracts of opinions given by researches on matters related to the idea of an Equal Opportunities Commission and open competition proposed in the (draft) NEM, which are anathema to Article 153 of the Constitution regarding the Special Position of the Malays. That Special Position was agreed to by the non-Malays in exchange, or as a quid pro quo, for their cititizenship right.

We will update this post and/or add other views as and when we come
across interesting ones elsewhere.


Brief analysis on the New Economic Model
March 30, 2010 by jebatmustdie

The book on the New Economic Model (“NEM”) landed on my lap this morning. It is about 200 pages thick.

It is impossible to review it comprehensively over all the technical aspects of it.

Overall, I think it is one of the most ambitious project government is willing to take.

The word ‘ambitious’ I stated above is supported by one of the best line within the document which is;

“To break the logjam of vested interests through political will and leadership”

The statement above is the single most important thing to make the NEM a success.

The New Economic Model: Enablers and Strategic Reform Initiatives

Let’s start with the risk areas of the NEM document.

Firstly, has the NEAC conducted enough study and research when developing this momentous document?

How did they arrive at the conclusion to say that Malaysia has reached its defining moment? Have they made the necessary surveys and tireless statistical data gathering before they can claim that the “NEM takes a holistic approach, focussing also on the human dimension of development, recognising that while we have substantially reduced poverty, a hefty 40% of Malaysian households still earn less than RM1,500 a month. Income disparity must still be actively addressed. Measures are needed to narrow the economic differences prevalent in Sabah and Sarawak as well as in the rural areas of the Peninsula.”

How holistic could the NEM be when just a few days ago, the Deputy Prime Minister revealed that the Government will start to update the data on wealth distribution by race to evaluate the people’s social-economic achievements only after Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad suggested for a more comprehensive study to be done.

Hence, is the NEM’s projections and approach is based on an INFORMED analysis?

By the DPM’s own admission, the data on wealth distribution is not updated. What is the current wealth distribution of the corporate Malays in Malaysia after the PM, Dato’ Sri Najib Tun Razak announced several liberalisation of the economy particularly in the financial services last year? Has the incorporation of Ekuinas helped to improve the wealth distribution among the Malays?

Or has it gone down for the past one year from the previous 18%?

I believe not getting a complete outlook on the current situation and taking stock on the actual realities of the current social-economy will further increase the chances of the failure rate of the NEM. In other words, we are at risk of being conned by the consultants. If we work from an incomplete data, all the initiatives proposed could be misguided and render the contents of the NEM useless.

Secondly, I believe the NEM is not taking into relevance the other important socio-economic factor when developing the document. They are stressing too much on breaching the USD15,500 per capita annual income for all Malaysians. In their mind, that level must be breached in order to catapult Malaysia into the high income economies.

But nowhere in the document are they talking about the Purchasing Power Parity (“PPP”). This is a more relevant and accurate measure of a country’s wealth status. There is no point of having high income if the inflation rate is even higher.

Blogger Hidup Tuah succinctly put it as follows:

Low/medium/high income country is based on GDP Per Capita, as defined by the World Bank. It is measured in US$. For example, in 2009, Malaysia’s GDP Per Capita was US$6,818. Hence, Malaysia is categorised as in the middle income group.

If it is measured in PPP, it was US$12,826; nearer to the high income (minimum) level of US$14,818.

Since PPP is a better measurement of comparable purchasing power and, hence, comparable disposable income and, thus, a better approximation of a comparable standard of living, therefore, it is strongly urged that PPP be used instead of US$.

Thirdly, one of their strategies is to developing a quality workforce and reducing dependency on foreign labour. How are they able to achieve this? By reviewing the education system. Apart from shifting educational approach from ‘rote learning’ to ‘creative and critical thinking’, the education system itself must be conducted on a streamlined platform.

If the NEM wants to achieve an inclusive and sustainable resources for the rakyat to benefit, then I believe, the education system must be streamlined into one national school system. This will produce a more equitable product where the graduates of this system can be integrated closely with one another. Thus, everyone comes from the same education system which won’t make them feel alienated from each other. Bahasa Malaysia and English must be the core unifying factor among the young Malaysians. Only when a strong primary and secondary education system is developed, will the institutions of higher learning can prosper much easier.

The time is now. It is indeed our defining moment.

But alas, will the government have a strong political will and sturdy leadership skills to break the potential logjam of vested interests?

Fourthly, one of the ways to spur the economy with the objective of achieving the high income status is to let the private sector be the engine of growth. After the Currency Crisis of 1997-98, the government had been driving the economy as the private sector has been licking their wounds from the fast paced development they embarked in the early to mid 90’s. They had over extended their financial and business activities and failed to recover completely after the dust had settled at the turn of the century.

Now there are very timid in doing business. With the absence of veritable data, the perception of the private sector being monopolised by one community IS the prevailing perception of the current situation.

Therefore, the NEM approach of having an economic growth led by the private sector can backfire especially when one of the goals of the NEM is to have a more inclusiveness in the economic development of this country whereby “all communities will be enabled to contribute to and share in the wealth of the country.”

This will become more important when the private sector is tasked to “promote competition across and within the sectors to revive private investment and market dynamism”, assisted by the enactment of a competition law.

What does that mean in a non consultant-ish way?

Generally, there will be an open competition with a level playing field in all development stages. Tender for projects will be an open, transparent process. This is very good. Survival of the fittest. Please be careful when any competition law is enacted. At one extreme, it will make it illegal for anyone to gain an upperhand in any tendering process. How the NEAC going to construct and from which country the example of the law they are going to model it from will be an interesting thing to watch.

But will a law such as this contributes to an equitable and fair tender process? When some industries such as raw materials and logistics are being monopolised by a few groups of people, surely only the same people will get the projects. With the practice of ‘know-who’ and not ‘know-how’ is very much entrenched in our society, there is no way the distribution of the projects could be done in a way that will allow all communities to “contribute and share”.

Ultimately, the economy will turn into an aquarium effect where food from above is eaten up quickly by the big fishes at the upper levels and only the crumbs will reach the smaller fishes at the lower levels.

Enter the fifth risk area of the NEM – the setting up of an Equal Opportunity Commission (EOC). The name itself will draw flak from the proponents of Article 153 of the Constitution. Again, just like the potential streamlining of the education system, will the government have enough willpower to wade this through?

The composition of the members in the EOC will be an equally interesting thing to see. The motives (personal and professional) of the members in the EOC will inexplicably steer the ultimate aim of the EOC. It is documented in the NEM that the EOC will cover and discriminatory and unfair practices.

Will the EOC take into account the quota requirements enshrined in the Constitution, or will it look into the unfair practices of some economic elements that are plaguing the economy and stifling the other would be players?

Sixth, the government will sell its land which has one of the highest value to the private sectors. These parcels of land are near the Jalan Ampang, Jalan Lidcol and Jalan Stonor. I find it hard to imagine why would the government sell these to people outside the government. In reality, the government is decreasing its potential wealth instead of outsourcing it out (if they believe they have no capacity to develop it). They should have just let governmental agencies to develop it. When you lose something monumental like this, it will be difficult to earn it back. UDA , PNB or Felda for instance, can be tasked to develop the land without the government losing it forever.

Another initiative that the government is embarking is to list two subsidiaries of Petronas in Bursa Malaysia in order to reduce the government’s presence directly or indirectly in their business activities. Who will buy these shares ultimately? Will the people with the lowest income afford to buy these shares? Will a more equitable wealth distribution be achieved through this method? Will 18% turned into 38%? Or will it dwindle even lower? How will this benefit all Malaysian ultimately?

Another con job in the making?

These are interesting times indeed. That is why I said in the beginning, the NEM is a very ambitious project to propel and catapult Malaysia into a developed status.

Now, there are many good and viable areas of the NEM. As you can see and read from the document, not all are bordering the fantastical and unrealistic mind of a consultant.

The aim to reduce rent-seeking behaviour and market distorting features is applauded. Its needs based approach for the lower income group is laudable. The best thing about the NEM is its affirmation that the previous economic policies did work.

NEM stated that it is not aimed to replace the New Economic Policy (“NEP”) or the New Development Policy (“NDP”) because of their perceived failure; it is aimed to build on the successes of the NEP and the NDP despite the many implementation weaknesses the previous policies have. The fact of the matter is, the NEP and its subsequent policies did achieve quite a number of success during their years of implementation. Only a few people with vested interests would continue to manufacture misperception of their failure.

At a crossroad where the nation is taking stock of itself, the current economic policies must be tweaked and amended to suit the current conditions. Hence, the birth of the NEM.


Here is an extract of a research paper entitled, “The bioeconomics of homogeneous middleman groups as adaptive units: Theory and empirical evidence viewed from a group selection framework” by Janet T. Landa, published online: 22 November 2008. This article is published with open access at Springerlink.com


Based on my fieldwork on the Chinese merchants in Southeast Asia, I developed a theory of the ethnically homogeneous Chinese middleman group (EHMG) as a club-like arrangement in which Chinese traders within the group cooperated by providing themselves with club goods/local public goods such as contract enforcement, capital and information, in response to an environment lacking basic infra-structure such as legal infrastructure, banking and credit-rating institutions. By cooperating with each other, members of the EHMG were able to enforce contracts, mobilize information and capital, thereby reducing transactions costs, hence out-competing other ethnic groups to appropriate the role of middleman-entrepreneur (Landa 1978).

Of the various club goods provided by members of the EHMG, the most important is contract enforcement. I developed a theory of the emergence of the EHMG as a club-like institutional arrangement for coping with the problem of contract uncertainty (Landa 1981, reprinted in Landa 1994, Chap. 5). I argued that under conditions of contract uncertainty, Chinese merchants will not randomly enter into transactions with anonymous traders, but will have the incentive to preferentially choose traders whom they trust, hence particularizing exchange relations on the basis of kinship, locality and ethnic ties. This is because embedded in these particularistic exchange relations are shared social norms of behavior (Confucian ethics of reciprocity) which function to constrain traders from breach of contract; any trader who violates the ethics of the group will be punished, including being ostracized from the group.

The effects of many individual trader’s discriminatory choice of trading partners is the emergence of an ethnically homogeneous middleman group (EHMG), a club-like arrangement alternative to contract law for economizing on contract enforcement costs in an environment characterized by contract uncertainty. Greif (1993) developed a very similar theory for the Maghribi-Jewish merchants in medieval trade. See also Tilly’s (2005, pp. 8–9) discussion of Landa’s and Greif’s work on ‘identity networks’. The ethnic boundary of the Chinese middleman group represents the outer limits of a Chinese trader’s discriminatory choice of trading partners because of the Confucian code of ethics which prescribes rules of the game—mutual aid obligations/reciprocity—for members of the same ethnic/dialect group, while not extending mutual aid to outsiders.

Constraints on behavior thus exist among members of the Chinese EHMG because of shared rules of the game; members of the Chinese middleman group thus form a moral community. Confucian code of ethics serves as an informal institution, an extralegal institutional arrangement for the enforcement of