Malaysiakini Yoursay

Yoursay: Hard to ditch Malay agenda without majority support

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YOURSAY | ‘As long as it can be used as a political tool and bring in massive votes, it will stay.’

Grilled over Malay agenda, Wan Saiful emphasises change comes slowly

Anonymous_b3cdcd05: The reason the Malay agenda seems an impossible dream is simply because the ruling politicians have hijacked the so-called constitutional provision as a means for political power and survival.

The New Economic Policy (NEP), which was supposed to address poverty regardless of race or religion, has instead served more to create a subjugated Malay middle class for captive votes and to enrich the ruling elites.

Thus, it is for the reason that this country is kept divided down the middle with racial supremacy and “bumiputeraism”. As emphatically stated by Bersatu’s new recruit Wan Saiful Wan Jan, it is the basis of the Malay agenda and attempts to change this “will create chaos in the country”.

This renders race-based parties dependent on Malay votes with little to offer the non-Malays. Thus, non-Malays are tolerated and wooed merely to tilt the balance of power among the Malays parties in contention.

Anonymous 2475091498015598: What Wan Saiful says is the pragmatic approach to the Malay agenda. Whether it's Umno or Pakatan Harapan, whoever comes to power will not touch Malay privileges.

The difference is if Harapan rules, there will be dramatic changes in the appointments of the attorney-general, MACC commissioners, members of the judiciary and others.

When these positions are made answerable to Parliament, corruption and leakages would automatically drop to an appreciable level.

Proarte: What a disappointment! Racial privilege is an impediment to reform. Wan Saiful is offering nothing new but the same old Umno agenda.

Not surprisingly, the 'Malay agenda' precludes Indian and Chinese citizens from being equal members in his party Bersatu and the ex-Ideas man sees no problem with that? Isn't this a form of 'apartheid' and blatant discrimination?

It is self-styled 'intellectuals' like Wan Saiful who are Machiavellian and unprincipled which scupper real reform in Malaysia. Part of the reform process is to deal with outdated provisions in the constitution.

To talk about the constitution as though it is cast in a tablet of stone is Wan Saiful showing his true colours. It clearly shows he is not reform-minded at all.

Anonymous #19098644: Sometimes you need to take one step backwards to take two steps forward.

It is easy to say that "ideally the situation should be such", but the reality is that Malaysian democracy is not made up of a matured electorate operating in a homogeneous and advanced economy.

Ours is a multi-ethnic and multi-religious society with sharp rural-urban divides, a large segment of poverty-stricken voters dependent on handouts and a sizeable racially- and religiously-inclined population led by an inward-looking political coalition.

It is easy for the wealthy urban elites to say ‘I will leave’, but the majority of us can’t do that. There are also many of us who will stay and fight for change rather than complaining about the less-than-ideal situation.

Existential Turd: The Malay agenda has been hammered since 1969. The nation is dying because of Malay agenda, and all they can say is, we have to continue choking on this myth.

Malaysia is doomed not because there are hardcore Malay supremacists in Umno, but because there are self-proclaimed progressive apologists for this racial policy.

Unta Senyum: Let’s face it. The Malay agenda will never end. As long as it can be used as a political tool and bring in massive votes, it will stay. That’s why the agenda is only about giving the fish and never teaches people how to fish.

Rev Dato’ Dr Sumana Siri: Wan Saiful, why slowly? The truth is immediate and can be realised if we are not biased, as a good number of commenters have expressed here.

If you get into the quagmire of politics with a contradiction - a Malay agenda and not a Malaysian agenda - then your inner contradictions will show before long. Being conscious of a problem is one thing, but to promote a specific agenda and delay meritocracy is another contradiction.

Bravo for joining Harapan, but no good luck wishes for any racist agenda from any quarter.

Undecided: I think Wan Saiful's approach is a practical one as once you are in politics, you have to be pragmatic because changing the minds of the majority voting base still needs some time and effort.

Making institutional changes should be the priority to curb excesses in corruption, cronyism, injustice and kleptocracy. I believe DAP understands this approach and hence is cooperating with Bersatu and its chairperson, Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

Mahsuri: So now he merely wants to prevent divisive religious politics? What about separation of religion from the public policy agenda which is not a constitutional provision?

You talked bucket loads about this too while helming Ideas? Et tu, Wan Saiful?

Anonymous_3f4b: So, no change to the Malay agenda. Then, what is the difference between Umno and Bersatu or to a larger extent BN and Harapan?

In this regard, it will be wiser to bet on Umno/BN as they have been in the picture longer and have seen and experienced the ups and downs of the policy.

Moreover, we can see a palpable and progressive change for the better in line with the new world order. This cannot be said for Bersatu as they are still new and need to expand their race-based agenda in order to survive and reach out to their mono-race electorate.

As Wan Saiful says, it won't happen in his lifetime and will take decades - if they are still around at that point. Vote BN for a more certain and secure future.

Sarawakian: I fully agree with Wan Saiful. The nation is dying, choking in a morass of kleptocracy and corruption; drowning in a sea of racial and religious discord.

Whatever the faults of Bersatu and its leaders, I respect their stance against religious extremism and kleptocracy. Successful self-made Malays like Wan Saiful are exactly what a Harapan government needs to set Malaysia on a path to meritocracy.

Wan Saiful, you are speaking out of political expediency. You and Malaysia will see reforms and meritocracy practised much sooner than you say, and most certainly within your lifetime, if Harapan takes Putrajaya.

Anonymous: It’s a historical fact that BN and Umno have brainwashed most of the Malays for 50 years. To unwind this thinking takes time - perhaps one more generation - and must be done gradually.

On this part, Wan Saiful is correct. Hence, Harapan leaders must be honest about this reform. If we do not give them an opportunity and continue with Umno/BN, things would only get worse.

Hang Babeuf: If this is a sign, an early indicator, of ‘the wave of the future’, then we can say one thing for sure: the future will look pretty much like the past - only a lot dimmer.

Amateur: Wan Saiful is courageous and frank to say the ethnic-based agenda is enshrined in the constitution. No political party is willing to sacrifice its own survival to rectify it when the majority of the electorates are not ready.

The crux of the problem is that by the time those indoctrinated are ready, other nations could have overtaken Malaysia by leaps and bounds. In short, good luck to Malaysia.

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