Yoursay: The message is minorities should know their place and shut up



YOURSAY | ‘'But they should not be 'punished' for the 'bargain' made by their forebears – forever.'

A million unqualified non-indigenous people given citizenship, says PM

Kee Thuan Chye: Dr Mahathir Mohamad saying that some of those granted citizenship were not qualified is denigrating.

This comment is most unbecoming uttered by a prime minister supposedly of all Malaysians. He should not be raking up the past and addressing it in such a condemnatory tone.

Furthermore, just his saying that the things expressed at the Malay Dignity Congress were “balanced” is enough to disqualify him as a credible prime minister who has the interests of the nation and all its people at heart.

It's time he gave up that position.

JD Lovrenciear: Mahathir, nobody said citizens cannot gather in the interest of their ethnic roots. But when you do so, do not demean those who do not belong to your own nor question or insult the 'others'.

That is the pain now inflicted in the hearts of non-Malay communities, sir.

MW: Yes, personally, I have no issue with any racial or religious or special interest groups having gatherings if it is about empowering themselves.

The issue is not about such gatherings; the issue is about the open show of power and the multiple 'warnings' given to other communities.

Ordinarycitizen: You are missing the point, Mahathir. The other ethnic groups do not gather to belittle and make unreasonable demands on others.

Another major point is the rights of the Malays are already institutionalised, for example through Permodalan Nasional Berhad (PNB), Mara, Universiti Teknologi Mara (UiTM), Tabung Haji, Felda, Felcra, et cetera.

Have you conveniently forgotten this? Mahathir, you have shown you are only a leader for Bersatu and not for multiracial Malaysia. Please retire.

Gerard Lourdesamy: This should have been raised with the British in 1957 and not after 62 years of independence.

How do you know that the one million did not “qualify” for citizenship? The population census for Malaya in 1957 was 3,125,474 Malays, 2,333,756 Chinese, 696,186 Indians and 123,342 others to give a total population of 6,278,758.

Even if we exclude the others, there were 3,029,942 Chinese and Indians by then. If one million of them were given citizenship in 1957 by reason of the generosity of the Malays, the balance of 2,029,942 was presumably already regarded by the British as citizens in 1957.

The fact is, if the one million had not been given citizenship, the British would not have agreed to grant independence.

The British were willing to give the Chinese and Indians dual citizenship of both the UK and Malaya but Umno rejected this. To hold this against the Chinese and Indians after six decades is very unfair.

Every ethnic group is entitled to defend their rights but it is absurd that in our country, the majority being 54.66 percent Malay feel threatened by the minorities despite the majority being given preferential treatment in the constitution.

It is equally laughable that the majority needs the protection of affirmative action against the minorities.

The Malays are entitled to organise whatever gathering that they deem is necessary but do not use the occasion to attack the other races and religions in the country as if we have contributed zero in the last 62 years.

Do not constantly question our citizenship and loyalty despite the sacrifices that we have made in ensuring the development and progress of this country. And stop blaming us for the ills and weaknesses of the Malay race.

There is no such thing as racial or religious superiority in the constitution. All citizens are given equal rights and equal protection under the law; see Articles 5 and 8. The Malay special position is limited to what is in Article 153.

The status of Islam as the religion of the federation is in Article 3 and is subjected to Article 11. The right to education including the use of vernacular languages is provided for in Articles 12 and 152 (1). Non-discrimination in the public services is in Article 136.

What is reprehensible is the constant non-Malay bashing that is condoned by the establishment and a desire by many right-wing Malay political parties, NGOs and groups to treat the non-Malays as a sub-class of citizens, and we are expected not to react to such intimidation and provocation.

Anonymous 3783626290178: Even if there was indeed a “quip pro quo” where Chinese and Indians were given citizenship in return for the recognition of the Malay majority’s pre-eminence position, this should not be held against all those later generations of Chinese and Indians who are born in this country.

They should not be punished for the "bargain" made by their forebears – forever.

On the same vein, what about recent immigrants from Indonesia? How is it that they are qualified to call themselves Malay?

The message from the right-wing groups is clear – ethnic minorities in this country must know their place, and shut up.

Kim Quek: Through his statement, Mahathir has exposed himself as an incorrigible and unmitigated racist, totally unfit to lead this multiracial country.

He added salt to injury when, in addition to shamelessly defending the indefensibly racist Malay Dignity Congress that resounded with racial hatred and racial discrimination, he now sneered at the non-Malays as “unqualified” citizens.

His intention is clear. He wants to reinstate himself as the undisputed Malay champion and saviour by inciting the Malays against the non-Malays, constantly calling the non-Malays as “they” when addressing the Malays.

The result will be an apartheid Malaysia that will see rapid economic regression and eventual disintegration.

The Pakatan Harapan coalition must now resolve to remove him as the prime minister forthwith.

Kafir Latte: Even by Mahathir standards, this is incredibly racist.

You are supposed to the prime minister for all Malaysians. How any non-Malay can still support you after this statement beggars belief.

Rupert16: Perhaps by “unqualified”, Mahathir is talking about the identity cards given to millions of undocumented migrants in Sabah to support BN during his term as the fourth prime minister? 

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