LETTER | The New Economic Policy was designed to help the bumiputera community.
The government must concede that after nearly 50 years, the NEP which was initially adopted for 20 years in 1971, followed by the National Development Policy in 1991, has failed badly.
A policy that is based on injustice will never do any good for the targeted community. Instead of creating a nation that is competitive, the NEP created a community that depends on government aid.
It is no better than the dole in Australia. Young Australians refuse to work and just await government financial support.
Similarly, the Pakatan government under Dr Mahathir Mohamad must have the political will to do away with the policies that breed incompetency among the bumiputera community.
The government has conceded that the NEP had not achieved the objective for which it was created. We see the bumiputera in Sabah and Sarawak still living in poverty, while Sarawak governor Taib Mahmud and his family members are alleged to have amassed great wealth.
Any policy targeting the poor should not be race based, but should empower the poor to earn a decent living – regardless of race.
Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime. This should be the objective of any poverty-alleviation policy. Policies that only target a certain community will fail, as poverty doesn’t differentiate between race and religion.
Often, when a policy is targeted at a certain community, it is subject to abuse. For example, why should the rich bumiputera who can afford to buy properties worth a million ringgit, enjoy the same discount as the ones buying low-cost apartments? Who pays for the discounts of both the rich and poor bumiputera?
What about the marginalised Indian community who cannot afford to own low-cost homes? Policies as the NEP and NDP only create more injustice between the various communities in Malaysia.
STEPHEN NG is a citizen with an avid interest in following the country’s political developments since 2008.
The views expressed here are those of the author/contributor and do not necessarily represent the views of Malaysiakini.