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Saturday, March 30, 2013

Daim's advice to Najib


Daim's advice to Najib
Whoever gets the mandate to govern the country for the next five years in the forthcoming general elections, the tasks before them are indeed formidable.
Former Finance Minister, Daim Zainuddin, was forthright in saying he preferred Najib over Anwar for the post of Prime Minister in his interview with the New Straits Times. He was equally pointed in saying the government needs to deal with corruption and crime, the nation's security, review the education system and make English compulsory in all national schools, among other things.
On corruption, he did not mince his word: "The government must come down strongly on those who are corrupt."
Indeed so. In Transparency International (TI)’s 2012 Corruption Perceptions Index, Malaysia was ranked as the 54th country together with Czech Republic, Latvia, and Turkey, out of 176 countries. More telling is that Malaysia in another TI survey on bribery, half of the companies surveyed said they believed they lost out because their competitors paid bribes. This was the highest score among the 30 countries surveyed. TI concluded that this may indicate that corruption in the public sector is systemic and in some areas institutionalised.
There are no short cuts but to amputate the gangrene from our system, otherwise we may just end up as a failed nation
On crime, Daim is on the same page as the man-in-the-street: "…every day in the media and on television, there are news reports of murder and crime. You say our country is safe, but if people don't feel safe, they will not believe you regardless of the statistics."
There may be less police reports made by victims of crime but this does not indicate our crime rate has gone down. People have given up on recovering stolen property. A few of my colleagues have got their notebooks snatched, my wife lost her new car not too long ago and none recovered their loss. I have to contend with counting the days when I would become a crime statistics.
The recent attack on Sabah by a ragtag army from Sulu is a wake-up call. Not only are our streets not safe, our borders are even more vulnerable. One can only wonder what has happened to our two expensive submarines hiding underwater off Sabah.
Daim is to be lauded for his stand on making English a compulsory subject in schools.
"Without English, we are dead, especially the Malays. The Malays must realise, without English they cannot compete. We must insist on English as a second language."
One only has to tune into China’s CCTV, its global English language television, to realise how important English is to China and its progress. How did this country, which could only speak the language of Communism not too long ago, overtake a country like ours which was at one time schooled in Queen’s English? Perhaps we should learn from China how to teach English instead of trying to speak Beijing Mandarin.
As a friendly advice, Daim said, "Najib should reshuffle the cabinet. Bring in new faces. People think he is carrying too much deadwood in the cabinet. Most are already past their use-by dates."
As pointed out by Refsa, an opposition think tank, there are 68 ministers and deputies in Putrajaya, or four out of ten Barisan MPs. That’s plenty of deadwood indeed.
-mysinchew.com

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