I recall proponents for the subject of History ……. and Mindfulness …… articulating the need to know about the past in order to understand why we are in this current situation.

In the same token, it was said that it was equally essential to know (read: to be mindful) what we are doing NOW as it would result in what we are going to be in the future!

I am quite certain that such thoughts did not go through the UMNO administration’s minds under Mahathir when they decided to change the language of instruction in schools from English to Malay.

Neither do I think serious thought was ever given for Mahathir’s declaration or ambition for the country to have a population of 70 million!

Such ambition …… or vision as many of Mahathir’s supporters call it, was not sustainable for reasons that would have been clear even then.

For example, the conversion of the medium of language in schools from English to Malay has now churned out students who do not have a firm grasp of any language ……. be it Malay or English ……. or even Chinese.

Not only that, their level of comprehension, analysis has fallen several knotches down compared to students prior to the change in policy.

The failure of that education policy ….. primarily due to its poor / short-sighted implementation …… was confirmed when Mahathir himself confessed to it in his book, “Mahathir – Doctor in the House.”

Mahathir even conceded that for a particular language to flourish, their people had to be successful ….. hence encouraging others to pick up the language. He then gave examples like Japan and France ……. whose languages were learnt the world over by different nationalities!

Well, unfortunately Malaysia has not been much of an example for others to emulate …… in language terms anyway!

As for Mahathir’s vision of Malaysia having a population of 70 million by the year 2020 ……. was like telling us having a large population is a panacea to all of the country’s economic challenges.

There were even those UMNO Ultras who took advantage of Mahathir’s population vision by encouraging their bretheren to have ‘large’ families ……. in order to dilute the proportion of non-Malays in the country.

Comprising about 33% of the total population of 13 million when Mahathir came into power in 1981, the Chinese population has dwindled to 23% of a total current population of 28 million.

I recall data stating that the Chinese comprised 45% of the population back in 1957 prior to independence.

Thinking that this would entrench the supreme political power of the Malays ……. the original intention of ‘Ketuanan Melayu’ slowly gave way to greed, lust for power ……. and corruption!

At the same time, the economic cake was being cut up by the UMNO led government warlords that meant little in terms of crumbs left for the Rakyat.

And this Rakyat we are referring to are the large numbers of Malays that have increased multi-fold ….. thanks to Mahathir’s vision for a 70 million Malaysian population.

The Malays are dis-enchanted.

The Malays ….. together with the rest of other concerned non-Malays …… are witnessing corruption of the crudest nature committed by the most senior of UMNO warlords …… without these cretins batting an eye-lid.

And what was entrenched Malay political power has now become a nightmare for the UMNO political hierarchy!

The Malay vote is split.

The Malays (many of them decent & hardworking) now have the luxury to choose a credible alternative government in place of one deemed self-interested (read: corrupt). 

As I have said before, what was originally a ripple has turned into a wave …… possibly a tsunami of change for Malaysia …… a change for the better.

God willing.

And so much for the Mahathir legacy!


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