Friday, May 14, 2010

Dr M rallies Malays to rise against the NEM

Speak up if unhappy with NEM, Dr M tells Malays
May 14, 2010

KUALA LUMPUR, May 14 — Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad today asked the Malays to thoroughly study the New Economic Model (NEM) and boldly voice out their views if they are unhappy with certain provisions in the model.

The former prime minister said he was concerned over some fundamentals in the NEM that could eventually lead to inaccurate government policies.

“We don’t want to ask for more under the NEM but we want our views to be given serious attention,” he said at the Malay Entrepreneurs’ Convention hosted by the Malay Chamber of Commerce Malaysia.

Dr Mahathir (picture) said the Malays can send a memorandum to the government to express their opinions on certain issues envisaged in the NEM but their actions must be orderly and they should not resort to demonstrations.

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak unveiled the first stage of the NEM on March 30.

Dr Mahathir said there was no government in the world that could draw up a flawless policy for the people.

Therefore, it was the people’s duty to study (government policies) and make constructive suggestions (for improvement), he said.

Dr Mahathir said he was given the opportunity to study the NEM before it was introduced to the people by the prime minister.

“In fact, I’ve sent a personal memorandum (to the government), giving my views on matters that I am not happy with. There are still concerns on whether the NEM is fair to all races or not,” said Dr Mahathir, who helmed the nation for 22 years.

He said he disagreed with views that the New Economic Policy (NEP), under which a vast majority of Bumiputeras benefited, was a hindrance to progress as many non-Bumiputeras also gained from the policy.

Dr Mahathir pointed out that many non-Bumiputeras had become millionaires in the country and in fact, Malaysians who secured big contracts and projects overseas like in the Middle East, majority of them were non-Bumiputeras.

“Don’t make the NEP as the basis to claim that Malaysia has not developed. For instance, is it true the government’s (special) treatment to Bumiputera entrepreneurs has jeopardised the nation’s economy? he asked.

Dr Mahathir said at that time the government had to take care of the Bumiputeras because they were not given a fair deal by the private sector.

He said the government had to act so that the private sector also played its role to ensure the NEP’s success.

“Not that we want to give them crutches, we want to stand on our own legs, but there are still some who are unable to walk properly or whose legs are weak, so we help them a bit,” he added. — Bernama

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