Friday, June 5, 2009

WHO AM I

My grandparents came to colonial Malaya in the early 1900 from Bukit Tinggi, Sumatra and settled in Petaling, Jelebu, Negeri Sembilan. My father was born in 1912 in Jelebu, Negeri Sembilan, and he is therefore a first generation Malayan born from a Sumatran immigrant. My grandparents together with his first family later moved from Jelebu crossing the main range into Ulu Langat, Selangor, at a time when my father was still a child, leaving his second family in Jelebu, Negeri Sembilan.

I was born in Ulu Langat, Selangor in 1943 and that makes me a second generation Malayan from a Sumatran immigrant grandparents, and from a first generation Malayan parents. In short, I am therefore a descendant of a Sumatran immigrant, and I believe that goes for all others who claimed themselves to be Malays, Chinese, Indians and Ceylonese etc.

I therefore have no qualms about people calling me a descendant of an immigrant, for that is what I am really. I cannot claim that my forefathers have settled in this country for the last 1000 years. And even if my forefathers had been here for that period of time, they too must have been immigrant from somewhere.

Since having been born in Malaya and now Malaysia, I would therefore liked myself to be called a Malaysian; not a Sumatran, Indonesian or any other name, although I am still proud to have been the grandson of a Sumatran immigrant. Had my grandparents not settled in Malaya, I would not have been a Malaysian; rather I would have been a Sumatran.

So why this fuss about we the grandchildren, great grandchildren or great great grandchildren of immigrants want ourselves to be called Bumiputras, Straits Chinese, Anglo Indians, Ceylonese, Eurasians etc., etc. Why not just call us MALAYSIANS……….FULL-STOP.

PM Najib has now propagated the 1 Malaysia concept which most Malaysians are confused, simply because we still want to relate ourselves with our racial identity. And for as long as we refer ourselves to our racial identities, we can never attain a 1 Malaysia.

And one only need to heed the remarks made by MB Kelantan Ustaz Nik Abd Aziz when he said that in the eyes of Allah swt, there is no racial divisions, and he (Allah swt) created the human race to be one. And are Muslims (regardless of race) ignorant of this?


CRUSADE AGAINST CORRUPTION

8 comments:

maurice said...

Dato,

Even other countries with longer history and civilization than ours could not do away with racial identification.

Thus in the USA, we have such identities as African American, Asian American, Latino American, or just American.

As for the British, if I may recall, they always introduce themselves as either an Englishman, or Scottish or Welsh! Seldom calling themselves a Brit!

Judging by other countries' history,I am afraid we have a long way off before we could witness the emergence of a truly Malaysian identity.

komando said...

Dear Dato', hope this piece of writing will open the hearts and minds of the mindless politicians !

They think they have different sets of organs inside their bodies!

Cut up any human being in this world and take a peek inside...is there any different where you come from, what color skin you have, what language you speak, what you eat,what rank you hold or what position you have...dato, tan sri, tun, king, sultan...or who you pray to?

If the answer is NO !

Than we praise the almighty for making us all equal!

I rest my case!

Hansac said...

Dato.

My grandfather came from Kampar Kiri, Sumatera, in early 1900s, married a local Melanau woman in Dalat. On my mother's side, I can say I have Sumatran blood.

I guess I am just proud to have something in common with you, Dato.

FMZam said...

So what YBhg Dato' wrote here about the 1 Malaysia Concept is meant that Najib is calling for all Malaysian races to be called just MALAYSIANS...then it is nothing new to what we have heard it long ago when a political party called for the Malaysian Malaysia.

No fuss about that unless anyone arguing what Najib called it 1 Malaysia is what DAP had been calling it long ago as Malaysian Malaysia.

The fuss is when Najib can call for that, the opposition was oppressed from propagating that darn thing.

Najib is copycat.

ArshadRaji said...

Dear All,

Thanks for the comments. I may have a slightly different view of the many races in the country. I left my kampung and lived with my late father who is a government servant. We live in a government quarters with neighbours of various races. I grew up with them, eat with them, play with them and I noticed that they are no different from me. And till today, I have no problems mixing with all the races. The 1 Malaysia is already in me, and it is politics that have divided us and make us look different from each other. And as a Malay, I do not get any special preference from anyone, and non of my children works with the government.

komando said...

The Brits allowed the country to break up and have a devided society, they encouraged race based political parties.
When they have their general assemblies, year in year out all they care for is - "what we can promote to ensure that race still subscribe to our party stand and its so called agendas!"
They will say :"hidup Melayu, hidup Cina, hidup India....blah blah blah"

So each race has its own agenda, when is it going to be a national agenda? Isn't that true....the BN says they speak for everyone! The so called coaliton of what? UMNO will decide and the rest follow, no big deal!

The country continues to be runnned that way, like it or not! If we don't change our own minds and that of our children we are finished, it is going to be worst, the gap widens by the day!

It is UMNO alone that dictates who becomes the next PM, why ? Because the system ensures that, allows that, has been planned that way, ALL THE WAY!

WE THE PUBLIC HAS NO SAY, WE DON'T AND CAN'T VOTE FOR OUR OWN PM, THAT RIGHT BELONGS SOLELY TO UMNO MEMBERS ONLY, SO CALLED SUPREME COUNCIL MEMBERS, WHO EVER BECOMES PRESIDENT HE AUTOMATICALLY BECOMES PM!

ISN'T THAT A FUNNY ARRANGEMENT? WHY DO WE ALLOW A FEW BRAINS ( NOT KNOWN IF THEY WORK )TO THINK FOR THE ENTIRE NATION WHO IS DEEMED FIT TO LEAD THIS COUNTRY?

CHANGE WE MUST CHANGE WE SHALL! WE ARE THE REAL OWNERS OF THIS LAND, WE SHALL TAKE BACK WHAT WE DESERVED AND WE MUST TAKE BACK OWNERSHIP, WE SHALL ALL PICK AND CHOOSE INDIVIDUALLY WHO WE WANT AS OUR LEADER, WE SHOULD NOT TRUST OTHERS TO THINK AND SELECT ON OUR BEHALF.

THEN ONLY WE Can be called 1 MALAYSIA...THE REAL ONE!

mohamad said...

We have to accept the fact that we cannot do away with racial identification but what is vital for this country is to have effective racial integration plans and eliminate racial sensivities.

It's nice for Dato Arshad to have shared his exclusive family background. I did not realise that he is the second generation of Sumatran immigrant. I have the highest respect for him to have joined the army and sacrificed his life for this country. To me he has passed the "malaysianship test" with flying colours.

How many of us are like Dato Arshad?

There is certainly a very long way before this country would achieve the ideal Malaysian identity. At the rate our politicians are exploiting enthnicity issues for their party and personal agendas it would take longer than necessary.

Najib's 1Malaysia concept should be given a chance, though some feel that it is a copy-cat from DAP's "Malaysian Malaysia". Najib is now the PM, he is in charge and it is just fair that we allow him to proceed with this concept and we must support him.

However, we need to caution Najib and his 1Malayia Team....
remember the 'Work not for me but with me", "Cemerlang, Gemilang, Terbilang", "Islam Hadhari" concepts by Pak Lah which were complete failures. Learn from these failures!

1Malaysia must NEVER deviate from the basics, i.e. the CONSTITUTION, which must be respected and adhered to, otherwise we will never stop arguing!

Proper strategy, plans and detailed executions of 1Malaysia must be deliberated and agreed at all levels before politicians go round making press statements about it.

I love to call myself "MALAYSIAN".

aofuad said...

OP Mohamad,
Could not agree more with Pak Chat and you.
I too comes from the other side of the Straits of Melaka.
Jawa on my mother's side and Acheh on my father's side plus a dash of Chinese on my father's mother side.
Being born in Penang, definitely the Mamak influence do creeps in, especially the hand gestures when talking excitedly....

Malaysia is not one but a culmination of many.
We are unity in diversity.
We are truly Asia, being populated by migrants of the two earliest Civilisations in the World, Indian and Chinese.
We are great because we have been mixed around by these two genes plus many more.
There is a biological explanation to that that also explains the perils of in breeding!!!

We have survived thus far because of our Unique Unity in Diversity.
Lakum di nukum waliyaddin...or to you your religion, to me my religion...
So how could we be wrong, when the Quran has said so?
The PR think thanks must have formulated this slogan for Najib as a sort of his 'Order of the Day".
I think it is doomed before it starts because, after he announced, there were many other attempts by his Minister to re-explain the concept again and again.
Till today, it is still being explained....

Whereas here, as much as we like to be called Malaysians, that too when we are overseas and the foreigners especially the third world country associate Malaysia with Mahathir Mohamad, we are very ..........(missed out the proper English word), to proudly classify our heritage and linkage to our great great forefathers origin into this country.
Not many of us would like the linkage to be attributed to the original people here!!!!!!
Some of us take extra efforts to 'perbetulkan' hidung anak anak semasa di lahirkan supaya hidung mereka mancung and not penyit like our original people.
I dare not list the names of those artist that pays money to do it in their adult life?
In as much as we occasional are reminded that our long lineage comes fromk Nabi Ibrahim and then Ummah Nabi Muhammed...we sometimes get lost in 'translations' and 'occasions'. when our sentiments are aroused and we seek solace in equatting our heritage to whatever lineage that can outshine the others!!!!
So how to have 1Malaysia, when we choose Many to Choose From, as and when we require.

I await with baited breath what the next PM's one liner or maybe two 'order of the Day' will be...
It won't be long if we look at the 'happenings' today..
It is only a matter of time...
May Allah reduce the blunders that most of us will make....
After all to blunder is human and to do otherwise is also human....nothing devine about it.
Safe trip to my second home...
Will catch up with you after your return.
I am about 98 percent sure of your identity...and it is my duty to know at least 98 percent of the OPA members....
Some says that i have overtaken OP Nawawi Desa's top position as the Mr OPA...!!!(That's what some says....not me)..
OP Azudin O Fuad