Wednesday, July 03, 2013

No more about Malays

In a previous posting here, we wrote about a quote from Prime Minister Dato Najib's speech at last month's Invest Malaysia conference. The quote below:
"In the medium term, we must make our affirmative action programmes more market-friendly and meritocratic."
We are reminded of this quote and posting because it is conflicting. Affirmative action can never be market-friendly and meritocratic because in the context of Malaysia, it has a certain nation-building objective to do social engineering to narrow some ethnic-based gaps.

Affirmative action (or known as positive discrimination in the United Kingdom) refers to policies that take factors including "race, color, religion, sex, or national origin" into consideration in order to benefit an under-represented group "in areas of employment, education, and business".

We know in our days back in the US, blacks from the hood were given many form of assistance to get them college degrees. It is not just financial but goes to the point of creating courses to enable them to catch-up with the rest. Some courses meant for them seemed like Form 4 or 5 materials to us.

So there is nothing sinful about affirmative actions. But it made us ponder what does market friendly and meritocratic affirmative action means.

Perhaps, affirmative action should not be ethnic based but since it is about some social transformation, it has to be based on some form of social entity or groupings. In one conversation we had in a chance encounter last year with Prof Tan Sri Kamal Salih, he said we could also look at income structure. 

Last night, we met a friend, a Phd holder and practitioner in human resource and he told us of a foundation established meant to giveaway scholarship for Bumiputera paid the CEO a salary of RM25,000 a month. Since we are not so sure, we will withheld the full story until we get more information.

He was sharing with us that piece of sensational information in response to our information about a so-called Council for Bumiputera economic action. We were curious of this group that had a long list of affiliate NGOs. These NGOs are the sort that have lots of demand on government to safeguard their economic interest.

We found the group was headed by a suspicious looking mamak character. Despite the nature of it's associates, they were strangely spewing the PEMANDU mantras on their website. Then we saw lots of posting and call on Petronas. It reminded us of a character that was highly critical of Petronas but was talking more of self-interest.

It begs the question: Could such large salary by an organisation meant for affirmative action be what is meant as market friendly and meritocratic affirmative action?

By the way, the Council we talked about was something that came out from EPU sometime back. With the change of guard at EPU from Tan Sri Nor Mohamed Yakcop to Dato Abdul Wahid Omar, something interesting happened few days back.

Wahid was answering the first few questions at Parliament. Interestingly, he did it without having to refer to any text. It was off-the-cuff and no "soalan bocor" as done by Tan Sri Amir Sham Aziz, the predecessor to Wahid at Maybank and EPU, on his first attempt to answer question in Parliament.

No bad for our fellow MRSMer over our former boss. But, we will have to limit that accolade there.

Since taking over Nor Yakcop's position, Wahid have been going around to hear the various taklimat from and giving his directions to the organsations and agencies under EPU.

In his meetings at TERAJU and Equinas, former Nor Yakcop-picked GLC CEO Wahid brought along his Special Officer and it became a discomforting experience for those that attended. He could be a Kadazan or other Chinese looking ethnics from East Malaysia but our friend swear that he was Chinese.

Not trying to be racial or racist, because NEP and MRSM had the support, input and effort of Chinese civil servants when it was formulated and implemented. Why was Wahid so insensitive to not allow the Malay officials and members of the Directors/Trustee of TERAJU and Equinas the space to express themselves?

He could have asked the chap to stay outside or bring other Bumiputera instead. Then he can hear more frank discussion and himself be more frank on information and data. Lately, there are too many alarming data besieging the Bumiputeras. If Malay is in trouble, what more the marginalised other ethnics in East Malaysia. 

It seems Wahid had been saying the same thing he said in his briefing of EPU bosses. Policies must be need-based. It could mean the end of any form of affirmative action. It could also be the start of a new concept of need-based affirmative action.

Hope his training at BTN's boot camp had not thinned his empathy for all the orang asal of Malaysia. It is because things have really changed in that department in Maybank since we left decades ago.

Since policies are no more affirmative based, even analysis of politics is no more looking at the Malay and Bumiputera side of the story.

Two weeks ago, there was a Cabinet Workshop conducted PEMANDU. For Day 1, 26 Ministers and Chief Secretary attended. While, Day 2 was for the 21 Deputy Ministers, Auditor General, the Attorney General, KPPA, KSP, KP ICU, KP MAMPU, 21 KSUs and more abbreviations than PEMANDU can create policy acronyms.

Surprise surprise ... the man, who always goes around saying he is non-partisan and apolitical, was giving an analysis of the 13th General Election. Yes ... it was Chief Powerpoint Officer of PEMANDU, Dato Idris Jala. No more Butcher from Shell but we know he has lots of butchering to do.         

He presented comparative analysis of GE 13 vis-a-vis GE12, issues and concern of the "rakyat" prior to GE13, and came down to a hypothesis by testing voting trend of urban, new and Chinese voters. There was also presented possible GE14 scenarios.        

It seems War Room member, Omar Ong had PEMANDU called in external panelists to give their views. Names were:
  1. Tan Sri Datuk Rafiah Salim, former Dean of UM's Law faculty, former Maybank Human Resource Head, a do with United Nations and now with a women NGO.
  2. Tan Sri Ambrin bin Buang,
  3. Tan Sri Tony Fernandes,
  4. Tan Sri Yong Poh Kon, Selangor Pewter taukeh
  5. Dr Chandra Muzaffar,
  6. En Afzal Abdul Rahim, CEO of Timedotcom and reformasi supporter
  7. En Wan Saiful Wan Jan, AMANAH, IDEAS and PAS member
  8. Mr Stephen Hagger, British and KL-based foreign stockbroker
We wrote about some of them here.

Were they really expressing the views of the public or the agenda of themselves or their race or organisation? If it is the public's view, good for BN. Otherwise, disaster to come.

It does not feel like the views of the majority but that of minority, non voting monority. Their attributed factor to BN's dismal performance seemed consistent with their agenda and concern on: 
  • Polarisation of the nation
  • Education system that differs from the rakyat’s expectations
  • Rising incidences of crime and corruption
  • Distrust with key institutions
  • Inconsistent communication from the government
Of course, one can argue back to say these are excuses by Chinese and youngs to do a Cinami or to cibai BN and UMNO. Nevertheless, let's take it as it is because this is not election year and no a need to argue and defend issues. For us, we just want to belasah UMNO and B till get their act right.

Interestingly, the takeaway for cabinet members to take home to digest were: 
  • Government must embark on more effective communication and avoid inconsistencies in messaging
  • Government must strengthen its fiscal position and the Goods and Services Tax (GST) must be implemented
  • Government must do more to meet the expectation of the rakyat in terms of education, crime and corruption
  • Bantuan Rakyat 1Malaysia (BR1M) need to continue
  • Embark on Public Service Delivery Transformation
The Cabinet Workshop seemed to be to justify continued existence of PEMANDU, muzzling on Utusan Malaysia and any pro-Malay voices like PERKASA, and full of liberal speak. There was nothing for the core and main supporters of BN i.e. Malays and Bumiputera.

Perhaps, there is always BR1M to shut their mouth. That is their only additional income while CEOs or GLCs and EPU-linked agencies and organisation are earning millions if not in the tens of thousands in the new economic model of high income GLC CEOs.

According to Idris and Omar Ong in a meeting as told by our sources, PM was apparently happy with the cabinet workshop and there was a note for cabinet. Hope PM is only bullshiting. 

PEMANDU will not only control the economy via the ETP, EPP, GTP, NKEA, and all other acronyms, they will be tasked with Social Transformation, Political Tansformation, Public Service Delivery Transformation and many other projects.

PEMANDU to do social transformation? Hopefully, their's is more effective than NEP's attempt to do social transformation. Currently, the grassroot supporters of BN do not know that we are regressing from the achievement of NEP. 

Looks like PEMANDU will basically control Government and civil service from top to bottom. The best part is there will be hundreds of millions to be spent for their friendly consultants. Thanks to the takeaway, the job for the Public Service Delivery Transformation is their's.

Idris Jala was so excited that he told his management team at PEMANDU that he intend to privatise PEMANDU and provide services to Government within the next 5 years. That is better than being owned currently by Government.

The argument is it is politically neutral and he is worried in the event of a change of Government. That must be the analysis he gave Cabinet then.

Looks like it is no more about Malays. It is also about themselves at PEMANDU.

If there is nothing about Malays, there is nothing too for the still marginalised Pribumis of Sabah and Sarawak. With more budget for vote deposit Sabah and Sarawak, they may have a better chance.

But, let's not just blame the Government.

The Malays blew it when they got the chance to better themselves. Now that the Semenanjung Malays are split and lost their political dominance, do not hope for the return of NEP or affirmative action.

Furthermore, the latter generation Bumiputeras in Semenanjung thinks they can do it on their own without any assistance, so they are comfortable to do away with UMNO and BN and "try" the more liberal PKR, the Chinese interest DAP and Islamist PAS.

Hopefully they could achieve where recipients of NEP failed to do.Can the three come up with something better to entice the Malays?


Anonymous said...

Looks to me we have one of the main cause of the last election's results in that PEMANDU.

It's an obvious case of harapkan pagar, pagar makan padi.

So what can we do to drive those PEMANDU out of government?

s. asma said...

If Pemandu is so great at administering the country, why a need for a cabinet ? Why a need for a prime minister even. Lets put Pemandu direct under the YDPA then.


This Pemandu thingy is evidence of Najib's incompetence!!

s. asma said...

Pemandu is evidence of Najib's greatest incomptence !!

As if the like of fernandez n all brainers lah sangat!!

Sick n fed up with Najib's incompetence!

Cormoran Strike said...

It's easy to postulate theories, but how do you reconcile them with the real world where countries are talking about economic restructuring, productivity increases, revamped education systems, higher value-add etc?

How do you get MNCs to buy into affirmative action when their work forces are global?

Would you tell a Microsoft, Google, Apple, IBM or Cisco, for example, that their workforce and senior and mid-level management in Malaysia has to be X% Malays, Y% Chinese and Z% Indians and others?

And that you had better follow the directives or else!n

Fender mustang said...

The malays who got the easy ride based on affirmative action in my opinion the ones who got really high, became idiots while the ones at the 15-25k per month group are the ones who appreciate.

But those who benefitted most from affirmative action, i.e those from rural and underdeveloped areas, who now earn 5-8k per months are really biting hard at the hand that fed.

Similarly to those who benefitted and are now in or graduated from PUBLIC INSTITUTION in the last 3-7 years,and who were paying subsidized education at ITM, are the ones biting hardest.

Anonymous said...

We hope 'Najibnomics would achieve its goals. However, the 'affirmative action' yearning for proactive policies. Action to implement the economic template being of the old economic fabric, economic transformation program and without exception considering the social reality of 'Buminomics' should be the impetus toward economic progress and social integrity.

In mind and surprisingly though, the Buminomics and its social well being are in shambled or rather shattered. If the affirmative action meant otherwise and neglect the potential of Bumiputra human resources, the contour of 133 majority seats are dim-witted for democratic damnation.

Despite the intense election phobia, Malaysian economy has been resilient. Our GDP growth accelerated to 5.4% from 4.9% in 2012. The question is, which of the sectors that benefit most from this growth.  The economic outlook in 2013 is encouraging though it is anticipated of its hiccup. Again, the hiccup will fall on to the weakening sectors. And again the weak has to be helped. Help is not the prerequisite to economic well being.

As much as we have confidence of Najibnomics, we would like to see proactive policies toward the development of Buminomics crafted and structured for creating more business exchange opportunities and more employment in next two years. Najibnomics needs proactive and radicle economic policies for Bunnomics for the betterment of 1Malaysianomics. As of now, Pemandu has given no clear indication in relation to Buminomics. By its leadership, it is still balky and con.

Anonymous said...

my friend went for an interview for a post in the Pemandu's education area. he confirmed that almost all the people in the Pemandu are non-malays. non-malays (mostly chinese) are the one is reviewing all the sylabus and what not from pre-school to high school.
only UMNO can stop this thing getting worst by getting najib out of the picture, once and for all.

Anonymous said...

Lets be clear about one thing, the Malays are more than able to compete - provided the playing field is level. Economically it is not the case just yet. They have every right; morally and constitutionally to demand that the playing field being made equal.

Hj, where is PERKASA? Haven't heard much of them since GE 13.

We need them more now than ever!


Anonymous said...


Did he really graduated in Industrial Economics from Nothingham University?

If he had, Farid Ridzuan would have peddled the graduation pictures for I Love PM campaign of GE13.

maae said...

Actually we don't need this 'brain drain' PEMANDU. The reason is, budget is so extreme, SIMPLY it might fall in the wrong hands. WHY? Do PM have the capabilities to control them, once they are appointed? In the end, back to square one. The rich and famous gets all. Basically, they are the highest income group with all the privileges and immunity.

Najib's vision is to transform Malaysia as one in the high income groups. Is Malaysia ready? In reality, bumis employ in the private sectors, blue and white collars, are discriminated with much less monthly pay, compare to non-bumis on the same level. What then with none or minimum qualifications? Or rank a file means,"jadi kuli batak". Needless to say, the answer is plain racial agendas. This is the gap that must be corrected in the first place.

In addition, most businesses own by chinese. They are already in the high income group. What left behind? Everyone can answer that. Malays who strive, work hard but clueless in the world of trading. Definitely there are no helping hands on the other side including commercial banks. Sad to say, hands are tied when in need for government assistance. Again, there is gap. It's all about business overhead and rolling capital. Persatuan? They are weak. Very weak.

How to manage and be the best among the best? Is it with no malays at all or just with the chosen ones?

The best solution is to transform MARA into highly professional body and world class PEMANDU for the Malays.

Anonymous said...

PEMANDU = VIAGRA(fake, made in China). Why Najib needs fake VIAGRA?

Ex-BCG said...

Pemandu is actually the institutionalised version of Fourth Floor Boys, legitimising the encroachment of McKinsey, Arthur D Little, Boston Consulting Group into determining the running of government, undermining the voice of the voters.

Our government system has become so cancerous that perhaps the best way is to bring it down in the next election and allow somebody else to take over.

Anonymous said...

It is time to bring down PEMANDU and the person who create PEMANDU.

UMNO grass roots must wake-up or else UMNO is no longer exist in PRU14.

Cormoran Strike said...


I am gobsmacked by your comments.

Let's see now - "provided the playing field is level", "demand that the playing field being made equal".

What "playing field" are you referring to? SMEs, privately-owned companies, public-listed companies, GLCs, MNCs with operations in Malaysia?

Like I posted earlier - is the government going to dictate to a MNC just who it can hire (and promote) in it's Malaysian operation?

MNCs can't be arm-twisted or blackmailed into compliance with such agendas. Not when they have operations all over the world.

And why can't public-listed companies and GLCs select their staff from the best out there, irrespective of race? Do they want to punch beyond their weight in international markets or remain "jaguh kampungs" circumscribed by nationalistic agendas that have little relevance in today's brutally competitive world.

So, spare us the high-faulting sentiments that are, frankly, a dime a dozen.

Let's argue, for starters, about who or what is going to provide the thousands of high-skills well-paying jobs (and the investments needed to realise that) that Malaysia needs to vault up into the developed country ranks.

Do you think that narrow nationalistic agendas and policies are going to achieve this?

As I write this, I am concurrently reading a report about the Canadian government going talent-hunting in Silicon Valley to try and lure some of the latter's best and brightest to relocate to Canada with open-ended promises of Canadian residency.

Do you think that Talent Corp or the Malaysian government dare to undertake a similar exercise in Silicon Valley?

Anonymous said...

I agree with you Maae. It is a practical solution. MARA should be reformed and transformed into an adept vehicle ascribing toward a higher order of integrity and professionalism resulting to produce more;

1) Successful and innovative entrepreneurs and professionals of globalized human capital.

2) to be significantly contributors to equity ownership. 

3) a competitive being of physically and mentally adapted.

An institution like Mara is soundly able to achieve the above objectives since it was formed in 1966, provided, ' MARA jangan dianak tirikan' and follow its course for the betterment in developing our human resources. Hope the brainy Pemandu acknowledges this.

maae said...

Terima kasih anon 2.55pm. Looking forward.

Anonymous said...

Ah Jib Gorrr sibuk dengan pengagihan jawatan dan kedudukan di kerjaan dan glc

Ah Jib Gorr 1M4U outreach
RMberbillion sahabat Cameron dan suami FLOM juga ketua politikal Lab
liberal bapak sekolah cina vernakular .

1M4U transformasi klik klak Ah Jib Gorrrrrr, yang hadhir di
benua AKRIKA 1.5 hari aje,bergegas ke London.

Masih belum balik dari
London lepas cabut dari afrika secapat deras.

Project usaha sama PNB Sime sri setia Battersea tak akan melibat kan aliran wang keluar ?
Kita banyak "cash dan asset" di Malaysia untuk di labur kan di United Kingdom ?
10,000 pound sterling untuk OUTREACH 1M4U di England ,cukup ke ?mesti ada aliran .
Orang Melayu dan bumiputra desak balasan kerana UMNO dapat 88 kerusi.
Ah Jib yang amat seronok dengan orang putih dan sahabat kepada zionist dan anti Islam cameron, London my second home.
Ah Jib gorrrr nama kan diri nya presiden parti melayu terbesar dengan 3 juta ahli ?
Tukar Presiden kali ini jom tukar presiden di PAU.
arjuna waspada
changkat lobak

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