Monday, 19 July 2010

UPDATED: A Malay Gentleman Speaks Up for His Country and Indicts the Government

Read here for more on Sakmongkol AK47 Blog, "The changing mental landscape of the Malays?"

The following is a letter sent to blogger, Sakmongkol AK47, aka Dato' Mohd Ariff Sabri bin Hj Abdul Aziz (former ADUN from Pahang). It was posted on Sakmongkol AK47 Blog ( here)

Dear Dato',

I am 65 and have no stable job.

I have been following your blog for quite sometimes and I find it informative, direct and dare to point out weaknesses in UMNO, the government and the Malays in general.

My favourite newspapers used to be Utusan and the New Straits Times. I have STOP reading them.

And now I also STOP watching TV3 and RTM news. I just cannot stand it anymore.

I am NOT a member of any political party.

As an ordinary citizen, like most other citizens of this country, I want a Malaysia which is progressive, modern and tolerant and most importantly a government which practices fairness, justice, etc.

I want to see the government fight corruption whole-heartedly, practice transparency and stop cronyism.

The government says they are doing all these.What I can see it is all talk and no action.

I sometimes cannot comprehend the reasoning and logic given by judges, including those sitting in the highest court.

DS Najib has been talking non-stop of everything that can bring good to the country. But I didn't see any result, as if he forgets everything he said once he finished talking.

Our DPM has a brain more like a 17-year olds.

And I didn't hear anything worth listening from the UMNO vice-presidents, and what more senior ministers, especially Rais Yatim.

When I think of the country's future I feel hopeless. I don't think UMNO, under the present leadership, can lead the country forward.

I hope your writings will be more forceful and cover wider subjects especially on reinventing the Malay minds.

Actually, the Malays has NOTHING to be proud of. We have to understand and accept our weaknesses. We are lacking in so many things.

As I see it, the Malays are going backward. The Malay mind has to be revamped and re-programmed. We cannot go forward using the current mind-set.

What can people like Ibrahim Ali help to advance the Malays?

What happen to our government servants? Every decisions, however minor, has to be brought and decided by committees. What's the use of sending them to Harvard, Cambridge, Oxford, etc.

Where is the delegation of duties in the government? Even buying stationeries has to go to the committee.

You can see the quality of Malay university professors talking on TV talk shows. They talk to please their hosts and to protect their positions, rather than truth and facts.

Another sore point for me. When a problem occurs in our society most Malay leaders points out the lack of religious education as the main cause.

To me this is too simplistic and sometimes irrelevant.But the Malays in general can accept this line of reasoning, which doesn't requires THINKING.

Anything bad that happen in society is blamed on the lack of religious education.We know that society's problems are very complex and cannot be solely attributed to religious factors.

But the Malays seem to think that religion is everything, at least a large majority of them.

  • FROM "Sakmongkol AK47" aka Dato' Mohd Ariff Sabri bin Hj Abdul Aziz

    sakmongkolThat was a letter I received over the e mail from a Malay gentleman. I have chosen not to reveal his name.

    What if this gentleman's personal perceptions represent what the typical Malay now thinks of? Our government needs to recognise this.

    The way we govern may no longer be sustainable. We govern with the belief that our population stays in villages, shut out from information waves and excluded from rising awareness.

    So we think, we secure peoples blind trust when we give free houses to a certain number of applicants. For 100 people who got free houses, there may be 1000 people cursing the government why they didn't get the houses. They blame the penghulu, they blame the ketua kampong, they blame the district office they blame the ADUN for skewed selection process. The sad truth is, they are probably right.

    In a few years, most of our population will live in cities. Villages and kampongs change in character, as the old give way to the young. People develop different expectations. Children who are better educated tell parents a different story.

    That's reverse counsel.

    Parents aren't equipped to tell children what's good for society. Educated children at various levels tell parents what's good for society-things like right to a decent living because government exists to manage the economy properly. And standards of assessment such as what the above gentleman is saying- good governance, fair, free from cronyism, free from corruption.

    People no longer want to accept the arguments of 'democracy tax' whereby democratic countries have to tolerate certain levels of inept bureaucracy, certain levels of nepotism and cronyism, certain levels of corruption. Why? Because people are better informed and this agitates and move them into action.

    A government that sits stubbornly refusing to adapt to a changing political landscape, is simply pushed to the back seat. If UMNO doesn't adapt to these changes, it loses relevance.

    How does the government reach out to the people?

    I was listening to the talk given by Robert Fisk yesterday. He was talking about Palestine mainly but he also touched about journalism in general. People all over the world, and not just the gentleman above no longer believe and even read mainstream journalists any more. They believed that mainstream journalists no longer report the truth. They just earn a living from the owners of newspapers.

    So in Malaysia if the mainstream papers are actually owned by the government, eventually the government will not be believed. Bob Fisk was telling, tongue in cheek I hope, that you have to start a new newspaper.
    -"Sakmongkol AK47"

  • From a reader, "MELAYU BARU" on Sakmongkol AK47 Blog: (Read here)

    Assalamualaikum Dear Dato' Sak,

    I read the old man's letter, and I can tell you that I agree with his observation.

    I am a Malay, age 40.

    My parents used to live in squatter house in KL. I am also among the lucky few who were sent to study abroad, courtesy of the DEB and BN government. In a way, I am indebted to the governments' policy, for my father who worked as a petrol pump attendant would never be able to send me to local university - what more halfway around the world.

    Life abroad open your mind in many ways. There, I encounter sons and daughters of famous politicians and chief ministers. They are there also courtesy of government scholarship.

    As long as they are qualified, lets send all the bumiputras abroad. Herein lies the problem - they arent qualified. They became spoilt brats - famous for throwing parties and having too much fun. One became alcoholics. Many were trapped in new found freedom. Many descended into a state of decadence.

    After my return to Malaysia, I didnt care about politics. I have many friends in politics - all from UMNO - and seeing how they conduct their lives make me sick. Money is almost not a problem in the roaring 90s. Thousands will be spent in one night, and there are many of those nights.Why was it spent that way? It came too easy, via many ways. Still, Im not interested in politics.

    In my 30s, I got promoted to higher positions in MNC - and started to deal with many politicians. There, one incident crystallize UMNO in my mind forever. It was an awakening, that made me realize what UMNO is.

    This politician and I were discussing about general state of Malays - power grab, money politics, enriching the clans and supporters.

    He said these to me - "Kau nak tau tak? Kalau UMNO terus dengan style macam ni, nanti satu hari semua melayu jahanam"

    I looked at him. I cant believe its coming from him. This person is a ketua bahagian. And I ask him "But Dato', why are you in this yourself?"

    And he said this "Eh! Esok kalau Melayu dah jahanam, anak bini aku nak makan apa?"

    There. The word that was told to me many years ago - still clear in my mind. What do you see today is even worse. There's no more honor among thieves - but free for all. There's no clear leadership. And the word of the man may be true.

    The fight for power and wealth has made UMNO a stage IV cancer patients. Now, the remedy to this is clear - you know it, they know it, and every Malaysians know it. But that remedy will kill the patient.

    And that's why I said that voice of conscience like you will always be like Cassandra. you know the future. You tell it to the masses - and no one believes you.

    May your effort be rewarded, but I doubt that UMNO in its current shape and form will take the medicine. The mess has become too big to correct. I have since distrust UMNO - as many of my friends in the same age.

    Oh yes - as parting note. The friends abroad? They are now ADUNs in an east coast state involved in a long standing feud with their CM.
    -Melayu Baru (19 July 2010 21:46)

  • From a reader, "UMAR" on Sakmongkol AK47 Blog: (Read here)

    Do you decently think that UMNO can reform ?

    My experience :
    I worked in JKR for 20 years. Resigned, opened my own construction firm doing all and sundry. I tendered for a project in Putrajaya.
    Company A tendered 3.0 M
    Company B tendered 2.5 M
    My company quoted 2.0 M

    I have worked on supervising on site for years in JKR. I know I can still profit by tendering 2.0 M

    The project was awarded to Com A.

    On a sunday, they called me to Putrajaya. The Pengarah told me to do the job for 2.0 M although Com A has got the job officially.

    I was asked to be the sub-contractor.

    I have to come up with Bank guarantees and start the work with my own capital. Upon completion, I have to collect my money from Com A. This com was NOT willing to put any upfront money.

    I did not take up the job. WE all knew COM A belongs to DG and crony.

    So much for open tender or negotiated tender. Who is going to pocket this 1.0 M ?

    Sorry, man, you can write about UMNO,PM, DPM for all your life and dream about rebranding or reform! Malay leadership today is rotten to the core.

    We are being conned and robbed by Malay leaders .

    Melayu sudah hilang jati diri !
    - "Umar" (20 July 2010 01:39)

  • From a reader, "ANONYMOUS " on Sakmongkol AK47 Blog: (Read here)

    There is a belief that among Malay that meritocracy should be preached among Malays WITHOUT removal of the NEP. The problem with that belief is that the presumption is WRONG.

    Its wrong because NEP is NOT a true affirmative action program. A true affirmative action program do NOT use QUOTAS - instead it uses targets and handicaps. All results are transparent with all its flaws opened for all to see.

    From the start, using of targets and handicaps was publicly and administratively unpleasant, the politicians sold the idea of qoutas that were untransparent.

    Take tender for example. A tender could be opened to all but a bumi tender could have been given a small price advantage over non-bumis to enable him compete. That would have brought out the best and real bumi entreprenuer. However, because it was politically more expedient and advantageous to the privilleged to use qoutas, such methods were dismissed.

    Regardless, its too late in the game to even just do handicaps and targets now.

    The Malay problem now is that the gap between the privileged and the rest is too wide.

    Even a more meritocratic system such as handicaps and targets among Malay will not spread the benefit wide enough. A more dynamic system is required and that means open competition to all.

    A system that is constantly bringing new opportunities that the priviileged Malays or non-Malays do not have an unfair advantage is required.

    That means moving up the education curve, up the skills and technology curve and creating new activities where its fair to all.

  • From a reader, "WALLA " on Sakmongkol AK47 Blog: (Read HERE)


    " The Malay gentleman said the government is all talk and no action. Actually it's the Barisan government which has been all talk and the Pakatan government which has been all action.

    Take governance practices. No one can deny that the FOI statute that will be presented by the Selangor state government ranks as one of the most important governance measures in the entire history of this country. It will open up the books for the rakyat to see.

    If this is not walking the talk about transparency and accountability, what is?

    That Khalid has invited the opposition, namely Barisan, to head the PAC of his administration is another masterstroke to show Pakatan has nothing to hide.

    That Toyo could not return the compliment but gave an evasive response shows he and his ilk have things they don't want the rakyat to know.

    .....Yet we can see the challenges which Najib faces. He has to go forward. Time is the essence. But he has a legacy problem.

    Too many have been cocooned from global reality they can even change history to protect their origin. It is a process of trying to defend the indefensible. It is as if being brutish and loud are their last line of defense against reality.

    Look at the way they argue things. The method has never been about looking at the problems as they stand, without recourse to racial overtones. And when their arguments fail, they jump to make ad hominem attacks and cast ridiculous slurs.

    ...What is depressing is that even some of the overseas-trained, like from LSE, Malay minds, have some sort of embedded chauvinism whenever there is honest criticism of the way the Malays are carrying themselves, even when the criticism has been constructive.

    This is extremely sad because they are part of the future of this country.

    There are a lot of other things one can ponder about mental landscapes but I am starting to think it's a waste of time. With investments tapering off, funds running out, debts ballooning every second, crazy ideas still being put up, spendings like wildfire, corruption uncontested, jokers jumping around, how, man?

    Some are saying the DAP is anti-Malay.

    1. How come they have Malay office-bearers, and where exactly have they been anti-Malay?

    2. Two, LGE has shown that the Malays don't lose out when open tenders were practiced; the Malay subcontractors in Penang won most of them by open competition.

    3. Three, if the Suqiu had to apologize in public, why not Perkasa?

    4. Four,...what for, Sak?!
    -"WALLA" (20 July 2010 09:41)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Notice that many Malays who are English literate & living in the big cities are aware of the shenanigans of UMNO. They too are fed up & frustrated.

These are decent people who arent racist, who believe in equality & most importantly of all, a true Malaysian.

I shall not state my race. A true Malaysian will believe that race, gender & religion has no bearing on one's patriotism & nationality.