Archive for October 2nd, 2010

Loss of Young Talent Thwarts Malaysia’s Growth

Published: October 1, 2010

KUALA LUMPUR — With its dazzling skyscrapers, bright lights and ubiquitous symbols of modernity, Singapore has long worked its magic on Rachel Liew, 20.

Even as a young girl visiting the city-state with her family from her native Malaysia, Singapore’s clean streets, convenient public transportation and modern lifestyles made a lasting impression.

As Ms. Liew grew older, she came to believe that Singapore could also offer a better education than her homeland, and in 2008, she packed her bags and headed south across the border to pursue a degree in mechanical engineering at Nanyang Technological University.

“I might return to Malaysia if I had a really good job offer there, which I think would be unlikely, or if I eventually get married to a Malaysian who wants to live in his hometown,” said Ms. Liew, one of about 700,000 Malaysians living abroad. “But other than that, I think I would probably settle down in Singapore.”
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Ethnic outbidding and red herrings

By Mavis Puthucheary
October 01, 2010

Ethnic outbidding is a favourite pastime among Umno politicians and they have become very good at some “innovative” ideas. We have been treated to “Ketuanan Melayu” and the declaration that Malaysia is an Islamic state.

Now we are told that as the Malaysian Constitution does not state that the prime minister should be a Malay, there is a chance that of this happening if the opposition coalition captures power at the federal level in the next election.

What are we to make of this “warning”?

First of all, we must distinguish the legal or constitutional aspects from political realities. In all democratic constitutions the person who becomes the prime minister is either directly elected by the people (in a presidential system) or is the leader of the party that has won the majority of seats in the elected house of parliament.

The Malaysian Constitution does not deviate from this basic democratic principle.
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