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‘Social contract’ and ‘Ketuanan Melayu’ are terms introduced by communalist politicians in recent years and it is worth taking note of the origin and the illegitimacy of their coinage.

‘Ketuanan Melayu’

or Malay Dominance can be traced to the infamous speech by Abdullah Ahmad, then Umno Member of Parliament in Singapore in 1986. (1) The emergence of this concept of a “social contract” which presumes that there was a trade-off between granting citizenship for the non-Malays and special privileges for the Malays by the representatives of the different communities at Independence is hard to trace. Its routine usage today, however, does not mean that its legitimacy should go unchallenged.
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