"We are now at the crossroads of our destiny. The 13th General Elections that is slated to be held on 5 May will decide once and for all what future we are going to bequeath to our children and grandchildren.
We have lived for more than half a century under a regime which practices the politics of ethnic discrimination. In its wake this politics of apartheid has brought about corruption, mismanagement, cronyism and nepotism on a scale not seen in many countries. I have been told that as many as 3m Malaysians have left this nation for other countries in despair. Can we afford such a loss?
The Barisan Nasional, which had its origins as the Alliance Party, which then comprised of the United Malays National Organization, the Malayan Chinese Association and the Malayan Indian Congress, has brought this country to the brink of disaster.
In playing its racist politics on the false claims that the underdeveloped and underprivileged Malays needed government aid through the New Economic Policy, the BN has misused and abused this policy to enrich certain individuals in Umno including their cronies and hangers-on. The rights and privileges of non-Malays as guaranteed in the Malaysian Constitution have been ignored.
The BN has systematically destroyed the institutions of state. The judiciary has been emasculated and rendered subservient to the interests of the BN. Malaysians must know that hardly anyone now believes in the independence of the judiciary. Foreign investors investing in Malaysia have demanded the right to have any legal matters arising from their business disputes to be heard either in Singapore, London or even in Hong Kong. What is the value of our judiciary?
The civil service is nothing but a pliant tool of the BN. The percentage of non-Malays serving in the civil service is negligible. Why? The BN, in particular Umno, has been consistent in making sure that it is monopolised by Malays and thus ensure that the BN’s interests and corruption are protected. Even the police force and the army are not spared from the policy of mainly recruiting Malays into the services at the expense of non-Malays who are more than willing to serve..."
Dr Ariffin Omar, an Aliran member, is a senator and former president of Aliran.