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10 APRIL 2024

Saturday, January 30, 2016

Malays stuck in 'time warp', says Rafidah

Former minister Rafidah Aziz today cautioned that the Malay community will continue to be stuck in a “time warp” unless their minds are liberated from the current “privileged” mentality.
Citing her experiences from half a century of being in active politics, Rafidah said the Malay mindset have always been nurtured to believe that they are special.
“We have been nurtured to believe that we are special. Doesn’t matter if we are actually a nobody, we are special.
“Even if we got nothing ‘up here’ (brains), we are special! It is the nurturing. We (Malays) are privileged,” she said in her speech at the launch of ZI Publication’s latest book by US-based surgeon Dr M Bakri Musa titled, 'Liberating the Malay Mind'.
Contrary to popular belief, Rafidah pointed out that the special privileges for Malay bumiputeras under the New Economic Policy was introduced in 1970 out of an urgent need to rectify socio-economic imbalances that was attributed as a trigger for the May 13, 1969, racial riots.
"That was why the government undertook the restructuring - because the Malays were very underprivileged. Not because you deserved it because you are Malay.
"You deserved it at that time because you were so far behind, you needed the scholarships, you needed the Maktab Rendah Science Mara (MRSM) schools, and so on,” she said, in noting that the mentality among younger Malays will not change unless their minds are nurtured to be competitive.
“Today, we still want tongkat (walking sticks) when our legs are okay, and we want to depend on the special status as Malays; so shameful," she added.
‘Unique Malay Malaysian identity’
In calling for the development of a global mindset among younger generations of Malays, Rafidah also stressed on the importance of retaining a unique Malaysian identity.
“We are Malay Muslims, not Arab Muslims. Be Malaysian Malays lah, don’t be Arabs. You want to be Arab Muslims, but Arab Muslims don’t want to be Malay Muslims,” she pointed out.
“If I am overseas and people ask me to introduce myself, if I say I am ‘Malay’ they will still ask where I’m from. A ‘Malay’ has no state because you can be ‘Malay’ from Kampung Cham, Cambodia, and even Cape Town, South Africa,” she noted.
Rafidah also said she was concerned that the Malays were not ready for the future, stressing the need to nurture the young with good universal values such as integrity, trustworthiness, responsibility, accountability, and respect for others. -Mkini

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