Oct 31, 2008

The Never Ending Dilemmas

March 8 Tsunami caught PAS in a dilemma between defending Malay rights and keeping the support of non-Malays who had backed and strengthened the party. They are unable to resolve this dilemma, being trapped by their rival, UMNO. PAS returned to its old habits frequently showing an intolerance that is not in keeping with its preferred image now as a tolerant, moderate Islamic party that campaign general values in a multi-ethnic party.

Let me tell you about few incidents that indicate the intolerance of PAS and PKR upholding the equal rights in multi-ethnic Malaysia. In Kedah PAS wants 50% of house ownership reserved for bumiputras and in Selangor it is against a Chinese heading the state development corporation PKNS. What’s wrong? I’m not challenging Malay special rights, just arguing that why don’t we build competent Malaysia with power-sharing concept. The PKR is also in a similar dilemma having to carry an MP like Zulkifli Noordin whose ideology is far from the PKR ideology to create equality to all Malaysia without fear and favour, he involved in an incident when he led a protest against the Bar Council forum on “Conversion to Islam” in August, where he was accused of barging into the forum and making an inciteful speech.

Voices calling for relief for poor communities are needed, to push us out of our obsession with our monotonous, jingoistic "Social Contract" national narrative. We need to look at all Malaysians generally, even bumiputeras have failed to achieve the target for 30% equity despite nearly 40 years of NEP only proves that achieving equity through regulation will not achieve the objective increasing the wealth of bumiputeras in the shortest possible time. In fact, the 19% wealth ownership target, if accurate, has remained death since the 1990s. Why don’t we structure new “Policy’ to save all Malaysian? If Muslim compromise with non-Muslims is it clash with Islamic principles?

Clearly I can say that there are some party politics are caught between satisfying non-Muslim desire for equality and an end to discrimination and defending its Malay Muslim ground where there is fear that giving way social equality is a huge loss to Malay society. Lets we (Malay, Chinese, Indian, Sabahan and Sarawakian) strive together despite the differences of race and religion to form a harmony, developed, and competent nation upon Vision 2020.

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