Monday, August 6, 2012


By Mansor Puteh

Just take a ride in the LRT or monorail and one can see how many more Melayu are there in it. There are so few Chinese, much fewer are the Indians. The other minorities are even lesser.

And take a drive from Zoo Negara in Hulu Kelang all the way to the city center at Dataran Merdeka by passing through Wangsa Maju, Setapak and along Jalan Tuanku Abdul Rahman to the square and one can notice how the whole stretch of land has become a Melayu-dominated one.

In the past it is Chinese-dominated. But not anymore. And there are other areas bordering the capital city of Kuala Lumpur which are also being taken over by the Melayu, as is has also happened in the other cities and towns, too.

This is the new Malaysia. The Melayu had been forced to leave their villages by the pull of the bright lights of the city, and they are now coming in droves to them, particularly, to Kuala Lumpur.

No wonder the Chinese and Indian community leaders who belong in an earlier generation who are out of touch or who refuse to acknowledge the changing political and social scenario are aghast; they are losing grounds and their stature is fast diminishing, the more they realize they are not in full control of the communities they claim to champion, with the young generation of Chinese and Indians who are more assimilated than they are.

The young Chinese and Indians speak better Melayu. They use the language more than their own mother tongue which they can only use amongst their own family members and friends, but not to the others.

And they know that their future depends on the charity of the kind Melayu whose Muslim values teach them to be kind to the immigrants.

Yes, many Melayu still treat and see the Chinese and Indians as ‘immigrants’. They are the New Immigrants.

The reason being they behave like immigrants, who refuse to assimilate with the majority Melayu, unlike their brethren in the neighboring countries and more in the west where they cannot charge the majority government for neglecting them, who do not provide them with special vernacular schools, etc.

Their thinking has been shaped by the cunning use of television and the media, which often overplay China, Hong Kong, Taiwan and India sentiments. This is to ensure that they grow up feeling like they are still there.

And the establishment of more Mandarin and Tamil schools do not help them either.

Worse, with the establishment of the so-called ‘Little India’ and ‘Chinatowns’ in the major cities and towns all over the country, have all become a permanent symbol of their background, that they are the New Immigrants.

At the same time, the many Melayu television dramas often extol the virtues of living in this particular city as opposed to the others, so no wonder, those Melayu who feel that they had been sidelined tried to come here when the opportunity avails itself.

Most of these dramas do not have non-Melayu characters, so much so that the Melayu viewers have grown up to think that they are better off without them.

Since our sociologists and psychologists have not dared to investigate on this matter, this essay is an attempt to do that.

They set up small trading businesses and food stalls before they move on to doing other things, much like what the Chinese of old had done when they first came to Malaya without anything other than what they wear on them.

And compare Kuala Lumpur in the 1970s, when once can count the number of Melayu in it. They were so few of them and those who were there were mostly those who were living in the city or its surrounding areas.

There were Chinese everywhere. Now even ‘Chinatown’ has been taken over by the Melayu and other races who are from abroad.

And this is just 2010. What if it is ten or twenty years from now?

The whole scene in Kuala Lumpur will be vast different from what it is now, which is a Melayu-dominated city.

And what about Melaka where I was born in and grew up at? The situation is no different than it is in Kuala Lumpur.

In my irregular return trips to Melaka I cannot fail to notice how the whole stretch of road I have to take from Bandar Hussein Onn near Kuala Lumpur to Melaka, a distance of 135 kilometers to be a Melayu country, with even the small towns being taken over by the Melayu.

Alor Gajah is one. This was where my late grandfather, Ali lived so we got to go there often, especially during Hari Raya Puasa to see him there.

Although most of the land where paddy-fields were once, and today most of them had been drained and turned into new housing areas and townships, but the dominance of the Melayu is prevalent.

The Chinese are nowhere, with the Indians nowhere still.

The situation is even worse in the Melayu-dominated states of Johor and the others including Negeri Sembilan which I have to pass through to get to Melaka from Selangor.

And Selangor, too, is no different. It is a Melayu-dominated state, so no wonder when Pakatan Rakyat won the state in the last 8 March, 2008 general elections, they chose to get a Melayu to become its new ‘menteri besar’.

1 comment:

city said...

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