New politics of “Beyond NEP”

I am still recovering from my shock in Parliament on Thursday night when the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuk Amirsham Aziz former CEO of Maybank, pleaded ignorance when I asked him whether he agreed that the New Economic Policy (NEP) cannot be equated with Article 153 of the Constitution. Amirsham claimed that he was no expert on constitutional law!

It is outrageous that after more than half-a-century of nationhood, Barisan Nasional (BN) Ministers and leaders cannot or dare not answer a simple question – whether they agree that the NEP cannot be equated with Article 153 on special provision for Malays and the bumiputeras in Sabah and Sarawak.

As I argued in Parliament when I posed the question to Amirsham, if NEP is equated with Article 153, then Deputy Prime Minister-cum-Finance Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak would be guilty of challenging Article 153 and Malay special rights when he told Bloomberg recently that “all the elements of NEP” would be phased out in stages, adding “If we do not change, the people will change us”.

The NEP had been a divisive instrument in nation-building, even more so today, as it is being used to benefit rich and privileged Umnoputras rather than the poor bumiputras.

Amirsham was unable to give any satisfactory response to my contention that the methodology used by the Economic Planning Unit (EPU) to compute bumiputera equity figures was obsolete and unreliable, as Amirsham admitted that the EPU methodology used the par value of the shares some 40 years ago in 1970 and the calculations excluded equity data from GLCs.

Independent professional studies have shown that the target of 30% bumiputra equity ownership had been fulfilled, for instance:

· the Asian Strategy and Leadership Institute (Asli) report by Prof. Dr. Lim Teck Ghee putting bumiputera equity ownership at about 45 per cent; and

· the University of Malaya research study entitled “Bumiputeras in the Corporate Sector – Three decades of performance 1970-2000”, by Dr. M. Fazilah Abdul Samad that the 30 percent bumiputera equity ownership as targeted under the government’s New Economic Policy had already been achieved about a decade ago when it hit 33.7 percent in 1997.

The NEP has become not only a source of national discord and disunity but an important factor causing inefficiency, waste and corruption as well as inhibiting Malaysia’s economic growth and development.

After the March 8 “political tsunami”, Malaysia must move into the new politics of “Beyond NEP” to create an united, just, competitive, progressive and prosperous Malaysia.

I fully agree with the article in the Star yesterday entitled “Remove equity target”, by P. Gunasegaram, giving three reasons why the BN Government should do away with the equity target for bumiputra ownership of companies under the NEP, viz:

1. The measurement itself is fatally flawed.

2. As it is structured now, it involves too low a proportion of bumiputra population and leads to the well-known Ali Baba syndrome where the bumiputra participation is in name only while non-bumiputras run virtually the whole show.

3. It puts far too much emphasis on an ephemeral, badly measured target at the expense of other, far more encompassing and important aims of the noble NEP, which include the eradication of poverty irrespective of race and the restructuring of society to eliminate the identification of race with economic function.

The message from the March 8 political tsunami is clear – the time has come for all Malaysians to rise above their differences to make a success of a Malaysian-centric nation-building programme and national economic policy which goes “Beyond NEP” to create a Bangsa Malaysia out of the diverses races and religions in the country.

(Speech 2 at the opening of the 2008 DAP Federal Territory State Convention at the Federal Hotel, Kuala Lumpur on Sunday, 2nd November 2008)

  1. #1 by bclee on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 2:55 pm

    100% agree with you LKS, they used NEP to hide behind it to make more corrupted easy money, to misslead thier poor peoples very sad story here.the elite group will make richer and richest.
    this will definately drag down the whole country and very much derimental for our poor malay friend in kampung which don’t know the hiden agenda this umno goon’s has done.
    they used racist game to hiding themself form thier own peoples.
    what nation-building programme and national economic policy all bullshit for them.

  2. #2 by chiakchua on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 2:57 pm

    A good question asked indeed!

    Privilege for all poor Bumiputras including Kadazan, Dayak, etc. yes!

    No on NEP; misused to enrich the well connected UMNOputras!

  3. #3 by riversandlakes on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 3:21 pm

    Down with Umnoputras!

  4. #4 by bennylohstocks on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 3:45 pm

  5. #5 by Steven on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 4:14 pm

    Yes, Mr Lim, keep on hammering them. The people put you up there and they are 100% behind you. Don’t let those goons get away with “murder”. It may takes years, generations even, but the people will persevere with courage and patience to see that these bunch of corrupted and incompetent monkeys are put out of office eventually, however long it may take.

  6. #6 by comingto50 on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 4:35 pm

    Kit, before the last GE12 308 I had never bothered much about getting and telling my friends and relatives how important we must cast our votes correctly. I was one of those ‘hot up’ talking and convincing my friends over lunch, teh tarik and so forth and attending ceramahs. Most had voted for BN before including me. But this last GE was different. What I am trying to say in this comment is this we must get the young ones already eligible to vote to register NOW! My suggestion is to get the youths in PR to actively doing it now. Not wait till it is close to the next GE and get them to be aware of the current political issues. Many of them are still not bothered. I’m now pushing my nephews and their friends to do so. Many of them are still not registered yet. But I’m still pushing them.

    We need the NUMBERS! Next GE is no guarantee to keep the seats with all the manipulations.

    Start now. It’s easier. And I hope it will snowball!

    Talk all we want now but without NUMBERS it’s all useless!

  7. #7 by LBJ on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 4:57 pm

    Dear YB

    You asked good questions.

    Amirsham is a good man. He tells the truth. The truth is painful.

    1. The BN govt dont care about the constitution – where NEP is concerned
    2. To prolong it – they just manipulate the numbers.

    Now we know, we must exercise our vote!

  8. #8 by swipenter on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 5:20 pm

    There is no politics beyond 153, NEP and Ketuanan Melayu as long as Umno is in power and behaving like a big bully. 153, NEP and Ketuanan Melayu is one and the same thing according to Umno.

    They twist, turn and spin when 153,NEP and Ketuanan Melayu are discussed turning them into a racial issue as if the non malays are challenging the special rights and privileges and special position of the malays.

    You can have studies showing official bumi equity of more than 30% but they are not going to listen or prove you wrong. They just ignore you and stick to their figure of 19.8% but also give you no chance to prove them wrong.

    Looks we have to wait for GE13 to change govt and we have to start working now.

  9. #9 by 318 on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 6:02 pm

    actually umno need nep b coz nep mean never ending policy for umno n his running dogs to become richer

  10. #10 by luking on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 6:22 pm

    i fully agree with comingto50 comments.PR take note and start off a group to initiate the new voters campaign without delay with our full suppot right the networking right from pr supporters and will get ten of thousands of new pr supporters ready for the next GE.its now or never in the next GE,Kit.BeeN must b eliminated for good.

  11. #11 by fong on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 6:43 pm

    It is true that there have been abuses under the name of malay special rights and it is the duty of the malays in particular, and all Malaysians in general, to stop it so that the rightful malays get their rights, and the non-malays get their rights as citizens of this country.

    It is a sad thing to say, but I do believe the main thing that is holding back malays is not the Chinese or the Indians, but the malays themselves. That is why Badawi and Mahathir have been quoted as telling to throw away crutches and work hard to face the challenges of globalisation.

    The world is becoming globalised and if they don’t change their attitude, they will only become beggars in their own country.


    We also suspect that the current situation will, unfortunately, get worse if no action is taken now. Why? Because our kids in school hardly mix with each other. They will grow up with little understanding of their fellow Malaysians, and with the suspicions that exist, it will be worse.

    The truth of the matter is that polarisation in Malaysia is caused by the discriminatory practises of the government – especially after the NEP – rather than vernacular education.

    The NEP is upheld for the rich and not the poor in Malaysia.

    Whether we admit it or not, the problem is that the special rights and privileges given have now resulted in only a selected few malays getting richer and richer. The bulk of the malays, especially in the rural areas are not benefiting from the system.

    Poor people are poor people, rich people are rich people – no matter which race they come from.

    The poor in Malaysia must be served but I am sure all taxpayers feel that this should be done in a manner which is blind to age, ethnicity, gender and religion.

    What is wrong with extending help to all deserving citizens based on merits and needs regardless of race?

    The Malaysia problem is that rich do become richer. And because of the political system, the players are the same.

    Out of control – this is all I can say about any type of enforcement and the level of corruption in Malaysia. No idea what Badawi has done in his four years in office but judging from the ground, I guess nothing much.

    If you have ever heard of the simple saying, “Give a man a fish, he eats for a day, teach him how to fish and he eats for a lifetime.” you will realise that many non-malays have learned how to fish but the government is still handing out fishes to the malays. One day the fish will run out.

    If you want to say discrimination is here in the US, yes, of course it is. Can you name a country where it doesn’t happen? But let me tell you one thing – if you go looking for it, you will find it. But in Malaysia, you don’t have to go look for it because it seeks you out, slaps you in your face every which way you turn, and is sanctioned by law!

    Official figures have more than one million Chinese Malaysians emigrating over the past 25 years. Why did they emigrate? I am sure the government knows.

    For most professionals, living abroad has its own ups and downs. But you get dignity, fair treatment and respect for your ability. You get a voice too. And ears to hear you.

    Brain drain by the tank-loads is what we get. Every single year, Malaysia loses people who could potentially contribute to the country immensely.

    So malay, you may keep your rights and perpetuate them. Such things are archaic. Who loses in the end? Your country, which should have been a first world one by today.

    I sympathize with those that have benefited from the NEP, but the bad news is that the price he pays for his progress is much higher than what he pays for his benefit.

    These special rights and privileges were once a necessity for them to move forward. Today, after many decades, they find themselves still standing in the same place.

    It is a shame that our history has been constantly twisted so that our younger generation has no understanding of Malaysia’s foundation and its true aspiration.

    It is arguable that if not for the contributions of the Chinese and Indian Malaysians who helped in the development of this country tremendously, Malaysia would probably be in same category like Indonesia or the Philippines, if not worst.

    To improve the malays lot, more have to be made to work in private companies where competition is real and what count is your ability. If special rights only help malays to become government servants, then all the more reason not to invoke special rights.

    But of course, the present ruling elite drunken with wealth, will continue to fight this dream to ensure that Malaysia is kept divided so that BN can continue to rule.

    Alternatively, Malaysians may begin to realise the dream of a new Malaysia.

    The bitter truth is that the majority of this nation don’t see the need to change things yet and until then, we can do little about it.

    The bottom line with present day globalisation is this: compete on a level playing field or you will lose. Plain and simple.

  12. #12 by ch on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 7:24 pm

    Dear All,

    As I have mentioned earlier in my comment that we are now leaving in one big borderless worlf where in this day and age, information, new techlogies and ideas are disseminated and spreas by a quick dash of the fibre optic wire. Yes, new information and ideas are being wired across the world and has made civilization more competitive and advance in all sectors as a result. However, we must reconcile with the fact that not all of us in Malaysia enjoy this previlege like you and I do, reading informative and sometimes provocative write-ups and parliament updates by YB Kit Siang as these unfortunate ones are being “shut-off” from the mainstream of information technology. These unfortunate ones are voters like you and I do and their votes are as important. That is why political parties like PKR, DAP and PAS should conceive a roadmap as to reach this particular segment of the society as so long as they are “shut-off”, they will remain as a vital “political chip” or in the hands of manipulative powerful individuals or powerhouse. It has been clearly demonstrated to us during the election campaigns of “308” that Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim has been made to be seen or to have taken a stand of giving up Malay special rights and previleges in exchange for support from the Chinese and Indians by the powerful UMNO-controlled media. Long before this, DAP has been made to appear as a Chinese chauvinist political party championing Malaysian Malaysia with the intention of finally stripping away the Malay special rights and oppressing them. Distorted lies on DAP, PKR, PAS, Dato Seri Anwar and a host of other opposition “big wigs” were splashed and prominently featured in UMNO-controlled dailies and media so as to manipulate the minds of this special segment of the society.

    All things said and done, UMNO has a very strong upper hand over the rest when comes to dissemination of information at the Malay heartlands. They have however, made a step in the wrong direction to have downplayed the powerful emergence of political blogs and information spread across and through the fibre optic. However, they have launched a very strong comeback.

    NEP has been conceived in 1970 and excuse after excuses were made by UMNO in order to retain the framework of this policy for 38 years now. Right till today, UMNO remains unwilling to alter or part surrender the framework of this policy with the archaic excuse that the Malays continue to severely lagging behind in corporate equity ownership despite the fact that many financial, plantations and oil and gas explorations based conglomerates listed in the Bursa Malaysia are controlled by the government and politically influential Malay groups and individuals. DAP, now PKR and to a certain extent, PAS, have gone through many options open to them to try unbreak this “NEP status-quo” but the end result has been dismal and perhaps futile. The mindset of the Malays were continuously manipulated as UMNO leaders continue with the rhetoric that those who challenge NEP or their authority intend to oppress the Malays and dispossessed them. The Malays heard of them yesterday, hearing them today and will continue to hear them tomorrow with the same chorus line i.e. they stand dispossessed and their special rights stripped off if UMNO loses control or power. It is impossible to change UMNO despite the stinging blow of “308” as they have adopted this policy to succeed politically and retained leadership of the country for a very long time.

    My take is that if, however, UMNO find itself unable to have a firm grip on the country leadership, they will try to change Malaysia into a situation where old policies and tactics become valid again. Various messages have appeared in political blogs and many believe there is a very strong and concerted effort by certain powerhouse to make these old policies and tactics reign supreme again by reminding all and sundry that the political tsunami of “308” was not a result of Malaysians denouncing UMNO, BN or their policies. The blame was squarely rested on the shulders of Abdullah Badawi and this chorus was sang in deep resonant notes to all and sundry.

    It has now come to a time where engaging UMNO on NEP will be nothing more than a nugatory debate as they have no intention to disband the policy. But the eventual fatal blow will finally arrive when Malaysia loses its international competitiveness and the complete emptying of this fertile land by politically influential individuals and their compradores.

  13. #13 by ChinNA on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 8:33 pm

    DAP, where are your evangelists to spread understanding of your undertakings?

    The truth should make us free, indeed.

  14. #14 by esgreat on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 8:33 pm

    The NEP is, through and through, a socialist idea.

    Like any socialist idea, they start off with the intention of doing good: equitable income, eliminate hardcore poor, etc.

    And like any other socialist programs, they end up with gross mismanagement, waste of public funds, and a huge expenditure just to patch up past errors. Being in control of public funds, they promise the world to their citizens for re-election.

    But the piggy bank can never last being wasted in this fashion. Funds run out, and they will have to tax more or inflate the currency. Ultimately, socialists bankrupt themselves.

    This either happens to an outright debt default, or hyperinflation (aka Weimar Germany, or Zimbabwe recently. it’s not a far stretch to say that this is the fate of the US dollar as well).

    People have to realize that the more power you give away to the government, the more power you are not going to get back.

    Stop big government spending. What we need is a strong rule of law, freedom and human rights (and I mean not the USA type, because their government has been bounded by a corporate-lobby complex).

    The reason why the US economy is crumbling isn’t because they have too much freedom or lack of regulation. In fact, there are too many regulations that actually protect the lobbyists in a fascist-socialist economic model wearing a ‘free market’ mask. Basically, they have spent themselves to the grave.

  15. #15 by ChinNA on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 8:48 pm

    Debating NEP is important and so is the need to improve the lives of those who voted for you. How do we make the poor less poor?

    In Ipoh Timur — What had changed and what had not in this place? Does the man in the street attribute positive change to LKS?

    How then can you effect positive change thru politics, (not restricting to just debates in parliment) ? If there is no change, then elections is just a once in 5 years event to us in Ipoh.

    The dilemma: Is there another better choice for Ipoh?

    Talking without results is well, just talk.

  16. #16 by Jimm on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 9:36 pm

    It’s big joke to asked someone who just lost RM4 billion over a bank deal in Indonesia ….. ever realised that why he was made a senator … haaaa ..
    it’s his passage to free him from being charged for that corruption.

  17. #17 by James on Sunday, 2 November 2008 - 10:35 pm

    Fully 110% agree that NEP not only unfairly benefit corrupt Umnoputras BUT also victimised poor Malay folks just because they live in the rural areas or they are not Umno cronies. Add to the NEP we MUST also get rid of ISA which is being misused by the Barang Naik gomen to hide & protect their corrupt practices at the expense of the rakyat. Long live Pakatan Rakyat.

  18. #18 by imranj78 on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 12:43 am

    While I agree that NEP/NDP to a certain extent has not been as effective as we want, I totally disagree that it should be disbanded at this current time. Rather it should be reviewed, made more effective to ensure that it does not give opportunities for `leaks’ and corrupt practices.

    Remember that NEP/NDP itself has good intentions. Its the way it has been implemented all this years that have been lacking somewhat.

    Nevertheless, there has to be a firm agreed target, which upon achieving, the NEP/NDP would gradually be disbanded.

  19. #19 by monsterball on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 1:40 am

    Disband it……UMNO will loose more votes!
    That’s why…even the devil reincarnated Mahathir said….NEP must continue. That the master and root of all evils in Malaysia.
    Now that Najib have won the President ..uncontested…UMNO is getting down to the business… to convince voters……feeding Malaysians with many good news…more than ever before…non stop..till 13th election.
    Watch out…..Najib carrying and kissing babies and young tiny tots……….a very effective trick to get more votes.
    MCA and Gerakan…given more Ministerial posts… once the minds of Chinese voters.
    Indians is UMNO biggest problem. Samy asked to resign as MIC and get a new fresh face….that Indians will be happy about.
    They don’t care Samy happy or unhappy …he has to resign…..and then…made a Tun.
    Right now..he is the oldest politician…no important title.
    So give him more RM milions with a great title..and ask him to shut up. That’s their plan.
    Big pay out…to few Sabah and Sarawak leaders….to keep supporting UMNO.
    All in all…be prepared for big projects…to be revived….when the Mongolian murder case….all forgotten…say…1 year from now.
    UMNO needs lots of billions!!
    Money is power and BN politicians ….corrupt to the core…can be bought easily.
    Malaysians by nature…also can easily forget….fed with good news.
    It’s the idea ……how to get the 2 million new voters…favoring UMNO…THAT MATTER MOST.
    Having said all these…..and if Malaysians agree with me…then it clearly shows…what type of reputation have UMNO build ..all these years.
    You see…if one is so good…honest and righteous…one need not keep defending itself…by swearing by the Koran..nor need to find ways and means to win votes.

  20. #20 by Godfather on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 7:48 am

    “Rather it should be reviewed, made more effective to ensure that it does not give opportunities for `leaks’ and corrupt practices.” Imranj78

    Where have you been, Imran ? Who is going to do the “review” and who is going to go after “corrupt practices”?

    The entire basis of the NEP for the past 30 years has been on leakages so that the goodies are channelled for politically “correct” individuals. Like I said in previous postings, thieves can never reform themselves. The only way is to vote them out of power. Period.

  21. #21 by AsalUsuLMalaysia on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 8:03 am

    If they keen to help the bumi malay’s they should have done by mass introduction in warship ZAKAT. I doubt these rich and benefits from NEP ever contributed fairly through Zakat.

    Warship or mass advertising “Zakat” and show your peoples by role model. But not begging for more instead robbing the nation.

  22. #22 by Godfather on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 8:04 am

    Even those in UMNO who are far-sighted enough to say that the NEP has not worked as well as our forefathers originally intended, and that an overhaul is necessary to ensure that the original objectives are met, have been hounded and told to put up or shut up. People like Zaid have been told that he might as well “stop being a Malay”, or called a “traitor to the Malay cause”. People like Nazir Razak, who has called for the abolishment of the NEP, have been silenced.

    The “right” to the leakages under the system overrides everything else – transparency, integrity, and accountability. This is the tragedy of Bolehland.

  23. #23 by Bigjoe on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 8:24 am

    As I listened to Sdr. Lim’s argument about exactly what NEP is, something slowly dawned on me – depending on what you define the purpose of NEP, NEP is not just unconstitutionaly, its illegal.

    By, illegal, I mean not against any statutes, but by PROCEDURAL LAW!!

    If you listen to the arguments going on FOR the NEP, overwhelmingly its about favouring the Malays based on either suppose special rights OR correcting a historical unfairness. Its actually different than when it all began when it was about a common social good of too big a difference between the races.

    If you take away the suppose ‘special right’ which Sdr. Lim is arguing here, you are left with correcting a historical unfairness. But the problem with this last argument is that ITS ILLEGAL.

    The reason why its illegal is because the non-bumis did not create the unfair situation in the first place. In other words, the last NEP argument seeks to redress a historical injustice FROM THE WRONG PARTY! The non-bumis in this country did not colonise or rule the country and created the inequality in the first place. By procedural law, you cannot seek redress from WRONG PARTY.

    In fact, with this point, its quite likely, in a fair court, people like Hindraf should be able to argue that a wrong has been done to them by being punished for something THEY HAD NOTHING to do with!!!

    Comments are welcomed..

  24. #24 by Godfather on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 8:43 am

    …and you think that an UMNOp-appointed Chief Justice is going to rule that the NEP is illegal ?

  25. #25 by monsterball on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 9:12 am

    ‘Accept money …but vote for People’s Party’… said Anwar…for the 12th election.
    The 13th is a long way off…not so …for old guys like us…who waited for more than 25 years…..a change of government.
    So enjoy all the forthcoming goodies…at least 3 more Hari Rayas open house …free food.
    Be happy with the ‘Good News”…that benefit all Malaysians.
    So easy to do that…as we are a rich country….but let them brag..while stealing.
    Be constant. Don’t be selfish. Think of young Malaysians…your children and all. UMNO is using tactics…with their so call…logics and explainations….hoping…voters can be… ‘Reborns” by their…
    “Good News”. Don’t be fooled by Tuns and Tan Sris…that are crooks …taxi drivers…farmers..low class people…making Malaysians..feel small. and listen to them.
    Chart it well with your powerful votes.
    UMNO will be out to capture more votes.
    Right now..they are in very bad position. They know it…..blaming Hindraf…….never the corruptions….right to the themselves.
    They know how to MISUSE the power we gave them…dressed up as our protectors for life.
    All things been said…..if by 13th election…voters do not vote with a united strong change of government …Malaysians deserves to be the laughing stock…to the whole world……no more UMNO.
    Here..we are almost ONE…short of few pro UMNO guys…trying to agree to disagree..tactics.
    Since UMNO is preparing for war ..with billions of RM on Submarines…warships…warheads…missiles….now stupid war Copters…put on hold….we must declare war with UMNO.
    It is “FOR ..or AGAINST”….not agree to disagree…going round and round….to no where.
    We will be peaceful…disobedient Malaysians…to frustrate them….not provoke them with violence…which they always hope for….to prove all their illegal arrests are lawful. Some.. UMNO good guys are feeling shameful It is working….as their own people said…”UMNO is corrupted to the core”.
    UMNO and especially MCA and Gerakan love to …twist and turn……trying so hard….to save themselves.
    But when UMNO feels no confidence to rule again…watch out!!…more provocations….fear factors…arrests …and big huge projects will be approved.
    They will try the money politics… enriching themselves…and prepare themselves.. for the worst. But if they can….STILL.. “buy up” police and judicial…Emergency Rule…their last option.
    I am going to concentrate….how UMNO hope to win vote and rule forever….how they may think and act.
    Fortunately…greedy like pigs…type of people…seldom make sense .out of what they do …say or act.
    So it is quite easy…to read their characters.

  26. #26 by Loh on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 10:46 am

    Well said Bigjoe.

    It is because the government rules against the provision of the constitution that the people are not allowed to talk about sensitive issues. Nothing is more sensitive than substantiating that the government acts illegally. That must have been the reason why the law has been enacted that decisions of ministers cannot be challenged in court. They might as well announce that the constitution is also suspended.

  27. #27 by cintanegara on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 11:11 am

    If Kit Siang keeps on allowing this kind of topic being posted to his blog, I can bet that he will never get Malay/Bumi support forever. He claims himself for being a leader of all races, but the reality shows otherwise. Cant’s he accept that this fact has been agreed by our ancestors long time ago? Why can’t he encourage Malaysian to live peacefully without questioning other’s privileges?

  28. #28 by Godfather on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 11:20 am

    I don’t think anyone here is questioning the “privileges” accorded to those in need, but when privileges = leakages = stealing, what should we do ? Remain mute ? Theft of public funds mean that little flows through to those really in need, and when our forefathers thought up the so-called social contract, they did not factor in the fact that people fight to remain in power so that they can hide behind this social contract and steal in broad daylight.

  29. #29 by Godfather on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 11:23 am

    How many billions have been spent supporting so-called Malay companies like Perwaja, Ranhill, Naza ? These recipients of the NEP do not deserve the billions that have gone down the drain. If these billions had been allocated for the 5 pct hardcore poor (most of whom are bumiputras and Indians) then we would call the NEP a resounding success.

    Stealing when hiding under the skirts of the NEP doesn’t take much brainpower.

  30. #30 by HJ Angus on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 11:26 am

    The agreed target has already been reached in that 1990 the deadline has come and gone and the BN has failed to redistribute the wealth FAIRLY.
    Instead they have created a few hundred obscenely wealthy families all linked to the ruling elites.
    If anything any new government should redistribute ALL ill-gotten gains – we simply cannot hope for any change with the current leadership.

  31. #31 by cintanegara on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 11:39 am

    Do u think by changing the government will eliminate all these? What about nepotisme and kronisme? DAP is no different than UMNO as they practise nepotisme and kronisme. Why LGE got senior post despite the fact they have other caliber people like Dr Tan etc? Dr Tan is more capable and well accepted by all communities…Now we know, why Tan Sri Lee Lam Tye left the party 18 years ago…

  32. #32 by Godfather on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 11:41 am

    Obscenely wealthy ? Yes, when bumiputras buy helicopters and private jets. When bumiputras buy banks in Africa and elsewhere. When bumiputras drive ferraris and porsches. When bumiputras own mansions in Australia, the UK and Indonesia.

    That’s obscenity. When we open our mouths to object, they say we are the ones who are obscene.

  33. #33 by Godfather on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 11:42 am

    The stealing will stop once we change this corrupt regime. That in itself will right the ship.

  34. #34 by Godfather on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 11:49 am

    Morgan Stanley once estimated that the NEP has cost the country RM 100 billion in leakages. OK, let’s say that the Jews that run Morgan Stanley are wrong, and they exaggerated the level of leakages. Let’s say that the leakages were only 20 pct of what Morgan Stanley said it was. RM 20 billion – that would have eradicated the poverty of 5 pct of our hardcore poor in a flash.

  35. #35 by Godfather on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 11:50 am

    …sorry, I mean 5 pct of our population representing the hardcore poor…..

  36. #36 by Godfather on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 12:12 pm

    The NEP is simply the legalising of leakages of public funds. For 30 years, even the non-bumiputra component parties of BN got into the act, just for the crumbs that trickle down from UMNO’s main table. So called non-Malay leaders like Semi Value and Rotten Fishhead Ling all got to benefit from some the leakages, and thereby causing them to go mute against all the injustices.

    The story goes that Mahathir once asked Semi Value to supervise the construction of a bridge by a bumiputra crony. The mamak was worried that the contractor wanted to start at both ends of the bridge at once, so that he can complete ahead of time, but given the lack of experience and professionalism, the mamak was convinced the bridge might not meet in the middle.

    Semi Value, being the astute student of the NEP, said to the mamak: “Ah, sir, then you can have two bridges instead of one !”

  37. #37 by trublumsian on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 2:30 pm

    NEP = new economic policy. this social contract in any other name has been around since 1971, where is the newness of it??

  38. #38 by Loh on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 4:57 pm

    ///Why can’t he encourage Malaysian to live peacefully without questioning other’s privileges?///

    No country can ever stay united with the people agree to a shared destiny when, other than the royal households who have the country interests in their hearts, there are citizens who have privileges over other citizens based on whatever characteristics of the people; race, religion or what have you.

    It is euphemism to say that Malays enjoy special privileges under the constitution. It is because the provision of special assistance to Malays which were euphemistically termed special privileges that have made Malays feel entitled to them. The late Tun Dr. Ismail was keenly aware that such assistance did not put Malays in good light that he said that Malays would give up article 153 when they no longer require them, out of pride.

    Modern Malays are either ignorant or in denial that Article 153 had originally a provision for review after 15 years. The review was meant to assess the progress of Malays to ascertain whether they would still require extension for the life of article 153, or would declare mission 153 accomplished to return pride to Malays as the late Tun Dr Ismail yearned for.

    Euphemism is said to be diplomatic but in this case it has sown the seeds of unhealthy expectation which have been exploited by UMNO leaders.

    Discussions on wealth are often centered on portable wealth and assets which could be converted to financial assets. Wealth can be beyond material which the persons acquired personally, such as knowledge, culture, philosophy, sense of justice and good citizenship making them good people beneficial to the society. Malays were rich in non-material wealth and perhaps lacking in material wealth which their leaders chose to treasure. This might be because material wealth could be transferred with political power. That became a basis for the leaders to build their political support. Had the leaders pointed the path of self reliance for their followers to acquire material wealth, they would have grown wealthy in both material and non-material sphere. But UMNO leaders chose to play God, and cultivated the mindset of harvesting without the effort to sow so long that they stay united with the numbers. The past four decades proved that the leaders had been rich on material wealth but have lost the good core values as citizens. At stake is the society where Malays take UMNO leaders as role model and believe that without UMNO they will disappear from the face of this earth. The society is terminally ill when educated persons think it natural that there should be different class of citizens so long as they are classed on the privileged group. Can Malaysia have a place under the sun if it has to defend this land from aggressors? Can the country leaders stand tall among their foreign counterparts who humor them to share their good experience on the craft of administration in a country of diversity while governing as if it is made of one race and one religion with permanent non-citizen residents?

  39. #39 by Loh on Monday, 3 November 2008 - 9:52 pm

    A letter to Malaysiakini by S Ramasamy entitled “define more clearly who is a Malay provides an explanation on why Malaysia is in trouble. It is reproduced later.

    Article 153 is supposed to provide assistance to Malays. But because the term Malay in the constitution did not clearly describe who a Malay was, the country ended up with having to look after in addition to the Malays and their descendents originally intended by the constitutions others who are also similarly classified as approved by the Constitution, or better known as NEWMalay. The inclusion of NEWMalays in the beneficiary target of the social contract not only make the assistance more burdensome but because the NEWMalays are more advanced than the Malays, they actually hijacked opportunities intended for Malays to NEWMalays. Ask who gained the most from the AP scheme said to be to assist NEP.

    Mahathir is said to be Indian. But he not only took the position of UMNO president for 22 years, he could even send the present President of UMNO packing. This is an example of how a NEWMalay can harm the chances which should have been offered to Malays.

    Unless Malays are in denial mood, they should know that the sorry state Malaysia is in is caused by non-other than the way NEP has been implemented which included negotiated contracts rather than tender. NEP benefited those in power more than ordinary Malays while the citizens and the country suffer. Yet when AAB tried to implement NEP differently, Mahathir accused AAB of not doing enough for Malays. Now it is the turn of the NEWMalays to fight in the name of Malays. But in fact Mahathir fights to be king maker. So a person who should not have been classified a Malay is ruling the country in the name of Malay. In fact Malays and non-Malays have lived in peace since time immemorial. When a NEWMalay talked about Malays dilemma, he sent them the dilemma in life. It is no consolation that non-Malays suffer more than Malays when together Malaysians suffer the low income low standard of living where the police could not even guarantee normal public security. It is said that the police station in Jalan Chow Kit consider moving elsewhere because the crime rate there is too high. Police are looking for protection by the people, rather than the other way around. That is Malaysia of Mahathir’s making after his 22 years reign when he concentrated to be seen to serve as Malay champion.



    Define more clearly who is a Malay
    Shanmugaraja Ramasamy | Nov 3, 08 4:43pm
    I applaud the recent announcement by the Malay Rulers of Malaysia for the non-Malays to respect the so-called agreed ‘social contract’ between us and the Malays and in return the Rulers too ensured that the rights of the non-Malays in the country would be protected.

    In addition to this, various Umno politicians have also raised the need for the non-Malays to respect this so-called agreed ‘social contract’. I feel that the majority of the non-Malays do agree with the agreement.

    However what intrigues a lot of non-Malays is what the definition of a Malay in this country is.

    Is Dr Mahathir Mohamad a Malay? His father is an Indian and his mother is Malay. A child will follow its father. Barack Obama is a black because his father is an African though his mother is a white.

    Most of the children of an Indian who marries a Chinese carry Indian names and are registered as Indians in their IC though whether they follow the Indian language and culture are doubtful. The same goes when a Chinese man marries an Indian girl and the children carry Chinese names.

    Theoretically, our much beloved Tunku Abdul Rahman is Malay because his father is one though his mother is a Siamese. The same goes for Dato Onn Jaffar as his father is Malay and his mother is a Turkish.

    There were rumors that when Mahathir was studying in Singapore his race was put down as ‘Indian’ though there is not much proof to back this up. Theoretically therefore, Mahathir is an Indian.

    Then the question arises as to why he had and is enjoying all the privileges accorded under the so- called ‘social contract’.

    When the new chief minister of Penang raised the issue of revamping the NEP, some Malays in Penang, especially Umno members, demonstrated in front of the CM’s office. However, if we scrutinise the television footage of the demonstration, most of the demonstrators do not resemble Malays but are more Indian.

    It is also not surprising to see in the Umno assemblies some members who do not resemble Malays at all but Indians. I do not wish to speculate but clearly these so-called Malays are not Malays at all but could most probably be Indians.

    This raises the question as to who is a Malay? According to Wikipedia, Article 160 of the constitution of Malaysia defines a Malay as a Malaysian citizen, born to a Malaysian citizen who professes to be a Muslim, habitually speaks the Malay language, adheres to Malay customs and is domiciled in Malaysia or Singapore.

    As a result, Malay citizens who convert out of Islam are no longer considered Malay under the law. Likewise, a non-Malay Malaysian who converts to Islam can claim to be Malay, provided they meet the other conditions.

    An example of this is Jeanne Abdullah, the wife of our Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi, who is ethnically a Portuguese-Eurasian.

    Clearly, this is a vague definition and prone to much abuse. It is not surprising to see some non- Malays who fulfill the above conditions being awarded government contracts, discounts for the purchase of new houses, education loans and scholarships, places in the public universities etc.

    All the above privileges are accorded under the so-called ‘social contract’ though I am not sure whether they are indeed part of the so-called ‘social contract’.

    Being an Indian or a Chinese or a Iban or any one of the other races is not an option as you need to be born as one but it looks like being Malay is an option and it looks like it is a lucrative option.

    I do not think there is any other such classification of a race as a Malay is classified in Malaysia.

    Clearly, the above has caused much dissatisfaction among the non Malays. In some cases, the so- called Malays who enjoyed all the benefits of the ‘social contract’ are only second generation in the country whereas the non-Malays are a couple of generations more.

    And in most cases, to emphasise their so-called ‘Malayness’ they resort to unethical practices of racism. A good example is Mahathir himself.

    He used to be called an ultra-Malay for his fierce anti non-Malay stance though theoretically, he is an Indian. He needed to play the racial card in order to be accepted by the Malays in Umno.

    Thus it is important that the rulers or the government clearly define what a Malay is so that we know that the benefits accorded under the so-called ‘social contract’ are received by genuinely economically deprived Malays.

    The Malays themselves need to understand that each opportunity accorded under the so-called social contract that is taken away by a so-called ‘Malay’ deprives a genuinely economically deprived Malay.

  40. #40 by Godfather on Tuesday, 4 November 2008 - 8:55 am

    Huh ? You mean Mamakthir is not a Malay ? You mean Khir Toyo or Ahmad Ismail are not Malays ? You mean Badawi’s father is not a Malay ? So what makes Badawi a Malay ? Ooooooooooo……

  41. #41 by cto on Tuesday, 4 November 2008 - 3:27 pm

    The Malays themselves need to understand that each opportunity accorded under the so-called social contract that is taken away by a so-called ‘Malay’ deprives a genuinely economically deprived Malay.


    Yes but no matter who you are, you are not allowed to question this so-called social contract.

    Malays who questioned it are branded as ungrateful traitors. Non-Malays who questioned it are branded as ungrateful pendatangs.

  42. #42 by Loh on Tuesday, 4 November 2008 - 6:19 pm

    Anybody can claim to belong to any ethnic group. But to claim benefits under Article 153, only those who qualify as Malays as intended in the spirit of the Article should be entertained.

    Badawi was a Malay before 1957, and so he should be entitled to assistance under that Article. But as the most powerful and a wealthy person, it would be an anomaly that he and his family members should require assistance under the Article. But they indeed claimed it under NEP when he told Mahathir that his son’s company was classified as Bumiputra. It proves that it is erroneous to provide the so-called affirmative assistance based on race rather than on criteria linked to means tests.

    There are many NEWMalays who are in UMNO in which they may be playing more important role than bumi Malays. PM AAB has suggested direct memberships for BN. Since the NEWMalays should not be in UMNO, maybe it is time UMNO should do due diligence to assign NEWMalays in UMNO as direct members of BN. Had this suggestion been put forth and implemented before 1987, Ku Li might have been the PM, and certainly the fate and standing of the country would have been very different. Further, the country would not be as polarized as it is today. It is late, but it is better late than never.

  43. #43 by Loh on Tuesday, 4 November 2008 - 7:24 pm

    ///”If you say that the concept of Malay supremacy has failed, then Zaid will not be what he is today. He is fortunate he was born a Malay,” he said after launching a forensic level security control system, NexCode, here yesterday.///–Syed Hamid

    Zaid Ibrahim would certainly know the answer to Syed Hamid comment. But Syed Hamid raises more questions in the mind of non-Malays.

    Under what article in the constitution is the concept of Malay supremacy promoted? When article 8 says “All persons are equal before the law and entitled to the protection of the law” how should any policy and regulation of the government not contravene the constitution if they lead to Malay supremacy?

    When a person is fortunate to be born in a rich family, he requires no assistance. When a person is fortunate to be born Malay he should help those who are not so lucky to be born non-Malays. Zaid Ibrahim’s ability to empathize with non-Malay Malaysians is to be admired. Certainly as a Minister of the government the Minister should consider his service to the country include all Malaysians. He should be ashamed of himself in harboring racist views against non-Malays. It was bad when he kept his selfish thought of racism to himself, it is worse that he should discourage others from doing the right thing.

    It might be good for Syed Hamid if he is elected a VP in UMNO. It is sad for the country since as a foreign minister Syed Hamid is known to the world. In making his racist remarks, his colleagues overseas know his stand. Should he be accepted in UMNO power centre, then his colleagues overseas would know how to judge the party he belongs. They would conclude UMNO is racist.

  44. #44 by rubini on Tuesday, 4 November 2008 - 10:03 pm

    Bodohwi is a local term for moron, which included but not unlimited to ABB. (Botak included, the moroness of all)

  45. #45 by taiking on Wednesday, 5 November 2008 - 8:47 am

    Zaid himself is a product of NEP. That is true. But he has the sense and courage to speak out – to point out the faults of that obviously faulty NEP to those umnoputras whose progress was never fueled by merit nor by ability. Who would kill the goose that brings golden eggs. I only assume that he risk that goose for the common good of the malays and the nation.

    Look Razaleigh too spoke in similar terms – about the failings of umno and what umno has become tody. Those wise words of his were obviously aimed at awakening umnoputras who were in a comfortable slumber for so long.

    But look again. Zaid was asked to apologise. And Razaleigh. Despite his awakening message, got only one nomination – that of his homeground. Umnoputras are not ready for any form of change. They had it good for too long. And current signs show that (1) they gave no regard to the tsunami that swept the nation in march of 2008 – that is contemptous of people’s desire; (2) they are upscaling their greed level; and (3) they are no longer governing for they are too preoccupied with power preservation and wealth accumulation.

  46. #46 by ktteokt on Wednesday, 5 November 2008 - 9:42 am


You must be logged in to post a comment.