Friday, August 03, 2007

Moral Courage

It is of great relief that there are at least ministers with moral courage left in the Barisan Nasional (BN) administration. As reported by Malaysiakini, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Bernard Dompok has received rare support from the opposition for breaking ranks on the Islamic state issue.
He argued that the nation’s founders did not have in mind an Islamic state when the Federation of Malaysia was formed in 1963.

“I think my colleagues in the government will forgive me for saying that I will not agree that we are an Islamic state,” added Dompok, who is leader of Sabah’s United Pasokmomogun Kadazandusun Murut Organisation.

Dompok is the first minister to speak out on the controversial issue after a gag order was issued in wake of Deputy Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak’s ‘Malaysia is an Islamic state’ remark two weeks ago.
I must certainly voice my support to Bernard whose demonstration of tremendous moral courage suffered the ignominy of being unreported in any of the muzzled mainstream newspapers.

Malaysia is a "secular state with Islam, the official religion of the country" and not, as otherwise proclaimed as an "Islamic State". And it must remain so until the day our Federal Constitution is amended, if at all.

It is of great regret that the leaders of other major component parties of Barisan Nasional, in particular Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting and Tan Sri Koh Tsu Koon have had absolutely nothing to say against Datuk Seri Najib's declaration.

It is clear to me that despite the oft-repeated rhetoric that MCA and Gerakan are parties who will present the conscious of the people to their UMNO counterparts from within BN, they have failed to do so. And if they did indeed make "whispers" to the UMNO leaders, they had shown no moral courage to stand up for the rakyat when their "whispers" are brushed aside with absolute ease. In fact, for even attempting to make "whispers", the 2nd tier leaders in UMNO will reward MCA and Gerakan's effort (if any at all) with stern threats and warnings.

The lack of response to the issue of such importance from Datuk Seri Ong Ka Ting, Tan Sri Koh Tsu Koon and Datuk Seri Samy Vellu, reflects either their agreement with UMNO, or a total lack of moral courage and conviction to stand up for the very rakyat they claim to represent. They are a disgrace to their party, and definitely a disgrace to the people.

It is hence no wonder the anybody, particularly the younger generation, with an independent and critical mind, barring those seeking connections to wealth and power, will steer well clear of these parties. It will also explain with little surprise, Jeff Ooi's decision to dump Gerakan for DAP.

I'd strongly recommend that the leaders of the BN component parties, or any of the country's youth leaders contemplating a political party, to read the above book on "Moral Courage: Taking Action When Your Values Are Put to the Test". Or you can buy it cheaper here @


Anonymous said...

Well, although Dompok can be lauded for being bold, he nevertheless will risk his political life forever. We will see this during the next general election, scheduled soon.

The rest of the BN component parties are just a decoy/puppet used by UMNO to control the public. How many times have UMNO threatened the other party leaders not to question the remarks made by UMNO? We have Hishamuddin and Khairy being the loudest, barking without directions. Where else can we find such people (read ANIMALS) if not Malaysia? They are just using the Malay sentiments to joust themselves to victory. Such losers.....

Anonymous said...

In my mind, Bernard just signed off his own obituary. Having said that, I salute him for his courage. Where are the MCAs, Gerakans and the MICs?

boonseng said...

My full support to our Minister Bernard Dompok on this issue.

We are all Malaysian and there is no need to raise the Islamic State issue.

Anonymous said...

Dompok is actually already near the end of this political career. So its not surprising he is willing to put something out there real as his legacy so his ancestors will not piss on his grave.

The PM has finally come out with his declaration that Malaysia is neither a secular or theocratic state. He is being honest but an idiot.

Firstly, there is no such thing. You can have a secular country with religious influence especially with the cover of protection of freedom of religion BUT you can't say you are not theocratic if your final arbiter is religion and then a slippery slope from there.

The truth is Badawi wants a theocratic state, even if he does not know or admit it. He imagines that Malays want that too but one where its not in conflict with modernity and progress. The problem is that that balance act is even worst that the balancing act of secularity and religious freedom.

This issue plays right into the opposition hand. He is a fool to have stepped into it, honest but a fool. He has basically lost the non-bumi and non-Muslim vote by a wide margin. Watch how MCA is going around to try and emphasise that Malaysia is not a theocratic state and getting some people to say that that it is not a bad thing to have influence of theocracy.

How good are DAP ot explain there is no such thing? That its just selling the future of our children for the sake of immediate political gains like the NEP, privatization, cronyism?

Anonymous said...

Malaysia is neither a secular nor a theocratic state. Truly a half-past-6 statement to pull wool over people eyes. Surely the Perak Prince can explain the state of our nation clearly to our PM.

Anonymous said...

Sense of disappointment rife as Merdeka Day nears

In 2004, Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi won a landslide majority on a promise to treat all equally and to tackle corruption. Mr Abdullah will seek a new mandate soon but few believe corruption has been reined in.

And now the plans to spend hundreds of billions of dollars on growth corridors and development projects in the coming years are being met with mounting scepticism. Will these projects, like many before them, also end up as white elephants built at the expense of other programmes which would produce better economic benefits?

The Port Klang Free Zone fiasco is but one recent example of a project gone wrong for reasons yet to be explained. Costs to develop the zone ballooned by more than four times from RM1.1 billion to RM4.6 billion (S$2 billion), and yet the zone remains a ghost town.

On the talent front, Malaysia's brain drain is accelerating, and is being replaced, not by skilled talents, but by an exponential rise in low-skilled foreign labour. Going by the current trends, the Malaysian Institute of Economic Research projects that the current 2.7 million legal and illegal foreign workers in the country will rise to around 5 million by 2010, or nearly a fifth of the total population.

By fate or fortune, Mr Abdullah has the privilege of being the country's leader in what is a landmark year of independence. If his administration chose to listen, what they would hear is this: there is little accountability, the racial and religious divide is widening, crime is going up and foreign investment, as well as high-value job creation, is going down. It should be hardly a surprise that not many are in the mood to celebrate.

Pauline Ng

backStreetGluttons said...

putting it mildly maybe the days of ministers with balls are numbered maybe can count as no of balls left on 5 or 6 men