Can Putrajaya talk up unity while sponsoring divisiveness?The Malay rights group Perkasa has now admitted that government agencies have helped sponsor some of its programmes, saying what it received was similar to other race groups.
The question is of course, why is Putrajaya sponsoring groups that preach and foster racial silos while promoting national unity with initiatives such as 1Malaysia.
Does it make sense to say one thing and do another?
Can any government or its agencies justify sponsoring groups that preach racial exclusiveness, that ask for concessions based on race and those that prefer its race remain dominant in a multi-racial nation?
How can Perkasa's aims gel with the Najib administration's 1Malaysia or even its patron Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad's lofty aim of a Bangsa Malaysia in his Vision 2020 document made in 1991? Or is it all just lip service?
Malaysia's population is 29 million, the Malays or Bumiputeras forming 60% of the people, with the rest being Chinese and Indians. How can any government that is elected by all these people pander to only one race?
Can Malaysia have a government that protects and cares for all citizens rather than just one race, beyond the rhetoric of 1Malaysia and working through race-based parties?
If the Barisan Nasional (BN) government is serious about national unity, shouldn't it keep a distance from race-based groups that preach exclusiveness and help based on skin colour?
Perhaps Putrajaya should listen to Umno veteran and Gua Musang MP Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah's speech at Perkasa's annual general meeting last weekend.
The Kelantanese prince, popularly known as Ku Li, said Perkasa should take a good look at itself and ask why it has been mocked and ignored by the Malay community whose rights the party professes to struggle for.
He said Perkasa was perceived by many as the cause of splits between the various ethnic communities in Malaysia. He said this was a damaging view of the party as national unity was prized in Malaysia.
National unity, the one thing that Putrajaya has been preaching, but groups like Perkasa have been chipping away, saying their race is the priority. How can anyone reconcile the fact that Putrajaya aids Perkasa?
Can Putrajaya blame anyone who thinks the government says one thing and does the other and therefore is not worthy of their trust? Because that is the reality that has been confirmed by Perkasa.
Putrajaya needs to take a hard look at itself and its policies before talking up national unity. Sponsoring programmes of a racial group will just show the government's insincerity, rather than its open-mindedness. - December 25, 2013