I find the following speech by the PM reported by the MI, while being good intention-ed strikes me as being rhetorical and a wee bit hollow, while the message is clear and that National Unity which I take it as unity among the races is important for our country to become a developed nation, the PM did not clearly state how he plans to achieve unity.
Unity a pre-requisite for developed nation, says Najib
PETALING JAYA, Sept 23 — Datuk Seri Najib Razak said today that national unity was critical for the country to achieve its goal to be a developed country by 2020.
This comes as the country’s national discourse continues to be marred by racial and religious debates.
Najib (picture) said that maintaining acceptance, moderation and harmony was “possibly the most crucial” factor for Malaysia to be a high income nation by 2020.
“For that (economic) progress to continue we must ensure that moderation, tolerance and respect for others forms the basis of our national creed,” said Najib at the National Conference on Making A High Income Nation A Reality here.
He added that the “Malaysian spirit” has been “invigorated” by his recent moves to enhance the country’s democratic environment by repealing oppressive laws such as the ISA.
The prime minister also said that while Malaysia had weathered the global economic crisis relatively well, he noted that there were persistant fiscal and economic problems in the US and EU and the country’s ability to thrive would depend on a “benign external environment.”
The Najib administration has set a goal of making Malaysia a high-income nation with a per capita GNI of US$15,000 (RM47,250) by growing at a rate of 6 per cent per annum. Read in full here.
I wonder whether PM Najib thinks that his 1Malaysia idea which to many of my generation is just mere sloganeering without having any specific objective, is enough to drive the many races in Malaysia towards being a united people. This is what Dr Mahathir thinks of PM Najib's 1Malaysia:
Dr M says ill-defined 1 Malaysia to blame for race problems
So why do we have these lingering problems in the first place? My main suspect is Language, we as a nation are not speaking the same National Language unlike the Indonesian, the Thais, the Filipinos etc. While we are the only country in the world which allows vernacular schools existing side by side with national schools which for all means and purposes will ultimately lead to segregation of the the races as lets face it people who does not study and play together and speaks different language will never get to know one another, will be distrusting of each other and will always be defensive against each other, can there ever be UNITY in such a situation.
Could catchy slogans like 1Malaysia be a magic pill for Unity after we have had more than 50 years of, and are still having the parallel school system where the Sekolah Kebangsaan co exist with the Vernacular schools. I don't think so.
Other countries like Indonesia, Thailand even Singapore etc. allow for ONLY one National School System and as a result the children of these countries of all races from the majority to the minority race were able to mix with each other and speak and learn in the same Language. Undeniably when we know each other, speak the same common language, there will be less distrust there will be more mixing and UNITY among races would be much easier to achieve. Let me share the following thought provoking post with readers:
Can National Schools Be The Choice of All Malaysians?
I have always been concerned about the parallel lives that some Malaysians lead. By definition, lines that are parallel never meet. And that is more or less what is happening to some of our youth, living trajectories that do not allow them opportunities to have meaningful interaction with Malaysians from other ethnic communities. Read More here.
1 Sekolah Untuk Semua
I'm the product of a 1 Sekolah system. I started schooling in Singapore in 1968, a year before the May 13 racial clashes and three years after the island achieved its Independence. The government of Lee Kuan Yew went about to "integrate' all primary schools. My school on West Coast Road had a flag of blue and yellow, and for many years it was known as Jubilee Malay Primary School. By the time I went to Primary 1B, it was called Jubilee Primary (Integrated) School. They abolished the Sekolah Melayu Jubilee. Other vernacular schools around the island were systematically replaced by "integrated" schools. Singapore went for its 1 School for All and I thought that they were doing quite alright. Read more here.
Tun Mahathir Sokong Sekolah Cina ?
Dalam artikel TMI dimana Tun Mahathir mengulas isu masalah perkauman yang semakin teruk dengan menyalahkan extremis dari ketiga-tiga kaum utama sebagai puncanya, Tun meminta kesemua kaum menerima hakikat yang adalah mustahil bagi kerajaan untuk memuaskan hati semua pihak. Read More here.
Tony Tompel Lu sudah lupa apa lu bilang pasai itu Kambing?
So let me ask you this now.....which one is more?
How many more kids in their early years are segregated in an Alien Language which is only spoken on a daily basis by less than 20% of the population.... Racial Disunity of course is a co-mingling of many factors, one key component is how well we understand one another…..and of which language plays a very important role..Satu Sekolah Untuk Semua
This key problem in language brings us back to vernacular schooling ….lets assume a kid from 7 to 12 years old goes to to a vernacular school..how many hours a day does he goes around thinking, learning, communicating in Mandarin/Tamil…goes home after school probably into an environment that continues to speak Non-national Languages..or even other foreign language dialects……how much interaction in BM or English will this group children have as a % of their life minus the early years say up till 5/6 years old….ask yourself would these group of children be racially united with other kids of different race who do not speak the language that they speak fluently….. as with any problem..there are root causes…..and if language is one of the possible root cause of disunity then we must face the issue on vernacular schooling head on..without fear and without politics clouding our judgment..........Read more here.
Satu Sekolah Untuk Semua
The segregation of our citizens from a very young and impressionable age (via vernacular schools) has become the single biggest impediment to the creation of a true Bangsa Malaysia unified by a common identity, mindset and language. After almost 52 years of Merdeka, a large proportion of MyCard-carrying Warganegara Malaysia are functional-illiterates in the language of their country of citizenship, and are incapable of partaking in the process of nation-building and social integrationexpected of citizens of any nation in this world. Read More here.
I think we seriously need a road map to UNITY; slogans, one liners, the Hari Raya, Lunar New year, Deepavali and Christmas National Open Houses is good work but is not enough as it is too much form without the substance, the road map to UNITY can start with the establishment of the Satu Sekolah untuk Semua(SSS) System OR we can start softly with the National Schools being given options to Teach and Study Maths and Science in English i.e reinstate the PPSMI and parents will more likely choose the Sekolah Kebangsaan over the vernacular schools which rigidly teaches everything in their mother tongue.
So if PM Najib have PEMANDU to drive the Economic Transformation Plan and he already has his agenda for a political Transformation plan, I think what's missing is a UNITY plan for a multiracial and multireligious Malaysia to carry us thru to 2020 and beyond.