Why I chose Australia

By Alan Roy | May 24, 2011
The Malaysian Insider

MAY 24 — Twenty-two years ago, I set out for Australia with my wife and three young kids in tow, braving an unknown future but confident that life would be fine in my adopted country.

Equal opportunity and anti-discrimination laws protect every new immigrant. Social security and educational benefits help the disadvantaged. You turn on the tap, the water runs. You flip the switch, the power comes on. Above all, good governance, honesty, courtesy and civic-mindedness are striking qualities that contribute to the enviable Australian quality of life.

In the first decade, there were the occasional pangs of regret, especially when I made the frequent trips home. Looking back now, I have absolutely no regrets. I don’t relish what I have left behind — a muddle-headed educational system, a corrupt and incompetent government, racial polarisation engendered by government policies, discrimination in educational enrolment and scholarships, public sector employment and an environment increasingly intolerant of the non-Malay, non-Muslim races.

Personally, I suffered directly from the discriminatory policy on scholarships. At the outbreak of May 13, I arrived at the University of Singapore with RM800. Miraculously, I survived the first year with that paltry sum, paying for tuition fees, transport, food and lodging. It was two roti canai downed with a teh tarik to start every day which ended with an 80 sen “chap fan” dinner.

The subsequent three years were financed by a private loan from a Chinese philanthropist. I received not a single sen from the government. My three children have all graduated from Australian universities, no thanks to the Malaysian government.

A bright future awaits them in a land of, what the Australians call, Fair Go.

* We asked readers who have migrated to tell us in their own words why they left. This is one of the stories.

  1. #1 by wanderer on Tuesday, 24 May 2011 - 9:18 pm

    Like you mate, I left Malaysia almost 30 years ago…that was the best decision I have ever made in my life! I am glad I have given my children the fine quality of life in Australia and spared the stress from racial discrimination from the racist political morons!

  2. #2 by digibee on Tuesday, 24 May 2011 - 9:39 pm

    It’s all the Malay dilemma. They can’t go fast, you have to slow down OR stop. Sorry this sounded so racist as I am not like that at all. BUT the truth is the truth. Racism is the policy of the govt back there.

    We left Malaysia 11 years ago and yes without any govt help other than making me learn a language that has no use in the developed world. One has to relearn all the terminology in Maths, Science … you know what I mean.

    And I was thinking for things are changing for better when they start to recognize English again (Math/Science). BUT hey, they managed to screw it up again.

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