Thursday, September 04, 2014

Manifestation Of Our Collective Desperation

A Kadir Jasin

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FIFTY seven years after independence, we are in a state of collective desperation although many may not realise or feel it.

Those in power are desperate to portray that everything is fine. Those who are powerless are desperate because things are not like what they are being told.

They are desperate that despite repeated promises and better-than-expected key performance index (KPI), crime rates are still high and other aspects of daily existence seem to be getting harder.

So they do what they can. The rich barricaded themselves behind high walls, wired their palatial homes with motion censor alarm systems and CCTV cameras. They hire Nepalese guards and guard dogs.

Nepalese guards are our new protectors
The not-so-rich dig into their pockets to erect barred wire fences and check points and hire guards to protect their un-gated properties.

If we are not residents, we are viewed with suspicion when we enter these makeshift gated areas. We are issued with passes, our identity cards or driving licenses are inspected and our cars are videotaped.

Of course you will not experience such indignities if you are the Prime Minister, the DPM and other privileged VIPs with outriders and fierce-looking bodyguards.

Those who can’t afford guards, barricade their houses with metal grills and reinforced doors and windows. Even my mother’s kampung house feels like fortress. Metal grills all around, locked doors and windows. Gone were the days when doors were hardly ever locked and windows were always open to let in the air.

Can’t blame them when common items like fertilisers, padi seeds and old bicycles are regularly stolen. Drug addicts, small time village hoods and besi buruk traders are the new scourge.

It’s ironic. Mosques and suraus are filled to the brim for Friday prayers. Literally everybody wears the lebai skullcap. Adherents of every religion and faith appear to display a greater degree of piety than ever before.

So it does not come as a great surprise to me when the Penang state government set up the Penang Voluntary Patrol Unit and, understandably too, it incurred the wrath of the federal instruments, including the police.

There is no need for me to discuss the pros and cons of the voluntary unit or the war of attrition that is being played out now. Suffice to say that it is yet another manifestation of our collective desperation and the failure of the establishment to live up to its promises.

What I like to say is the Penang’s voluntary patrol unit is neither new nor unique. It had been preceded by a similar vigilante force, albeit more restricted in nature, established by the Selangor government under Muhammad Muhammad Taib.

Much to the chagrin of the federal government and the police he set up something akin to an Islamic moral police force called Badar, purportedly to combat “maksiat” (sins).

Its disbanding soon after was made easy when several of its members were caught red-handed extorting money from foreign workers.

The vigilantes, the barricades, the Nepalese guards, the brisk sales of security equipments are the manifestation of the rakyat’s despondence with the existing law and order mechanism and the ineffectiveness of such community based initiatives as the Rukun Tetangga and friends of the police aka Rakan Cop.

Nepalese Gurkhas during Malayan Emergency
The situation today reminds me of the Emergency days (1948-60) when villages were barricaded and the Nepalese Gurkhas (soldiers) were a common sight.

Alas, because we never learn, history repeats itself. Today we have to employ children and grandchildren of the Gurkhas to protect us once again. 



Sabtu said...

Rumah-rumah macam Putrajaya kan bagus dato. Tak ada pagar, gerigi besi, aman kan. Saya tanya penghuni Putrajaya, mereka kata cukup aman damai.

zainal abidin awang kechik said...

Salam Tok

Jika kita Masih lagi tidak mampu lawan rasuah ini yang berlaku

SolitaireHunter said...

Total Failure of The Federal Govt:

1. 5.2 million legal and illegal immigrants in the country!

2. Corruption within the Main Ministry namely Immigration Dept, Custom Dept,Diesel etc

ab said...

Salam dato,

I like your last paragraph.

However,there has been `a new' breach/destruction of another `barricade/s' in this nation. This destruction is more damaging and dangerous..

....and it has been `destroyed' by the present good PM.

Over the last 50-60 years, the nation has a CLEAR DEMARCATION or a `barricade'in the traditions, cultures, religion rituals, conversation and `civility' between the malays/bumiputra and non malays in this nation..AND THIS DEMARCATION/
`barricade' has been well looked after and preserved by the government and the people.

And it protects the peoples somewhat, although it may not be the perfect/the best.

The latest PM has destroyed this barricade/s proactively.....

And at present,people from both sides of the barricade are trying hardest ramming and stampede into each other, not unlike what is happening in GAZA/Ukraine..

Soon, both sides will endure huge losses, if notmost of if, or everything that has been conserved previously, of civility, cultures, busineses,wealth,finance, tradition and rituals of the religions and etc...

The Malays/bumiputras with the present level of knowledge, business skill,business acumens, economic capacity, financial strength, wealth accumulation, media control capacity and etc WILL NOT BE ABLE to withstand this `assaults'...

My `instinct' is that the losses and sufferings is greater if not the greatest amongst the Malays and bumiputra in all categories of ages and life...most likely, similar to the fate of the present and previous gazaans.

So Dato, can these gurkhas look after us and our descendants then?....

Abu Bakar Ab Rahman


Desperado 1. Went on a rebung hunting in Janda Baik. Met a desperate housewife – no not the Hollywood type, but an ordinary village mother who is desperate because the school bus service from Bukit Tinggi to Bentong has been discontinued. Her sixth form daughter who attends school in Bentong is forced to hitch rides from friends and neighbours. The bus company (Central) stopped the service during the recent bulan puasa (July) with the promise to restart it this month. Until today there is sign of the service. I wonder if the JKKK, which is usually controlled by Umno people, has done anything. If my memory is any good, I believe the PM hails from Pahang and Janda Baik is in Pahang and the Umno training center, ILMU is in Janda Baik.

Desperado 2. A Dato’ Seri Lim from Penang whom I met this morning while having roti canai breakfast at Ratha Raub Restaurant in Damansara Utama is worried about the goings-on in the country. Thank you Dato’ Seri for having faith in dinosaur like me but I don’t think I can do much. We can only speak and write to express our concern. We do not have the power to change things, except once every five years at the polls. Even so we may not have the desired choice. It the case of dua kali lima.

3. Sdr Abu Bakar, PM talks about the virtues of being moderate. But the opposite may be true. And silently the fringe is becoming more radical and militant. Still the PM was widely reporting as urging Umno to "emulate" the resolve of the murderous IS militants.

Thank you


The last para of part 3 of my response should read: Still the PM was widely reported......"

Sorry. Thank you.

Melati Wilayah said...

Hebat Malaysia boleh ni. Dengar cerita state Director of Custom pun dah kena cekup olih SPRM. Kalau dah orang bawah pun makan kenyang maka Director pun tak tahan juga....

Fendy Ahmad said...

Saya dulu mmg penyokong Datuk AKJ sejak sekolah. Beli NST sebab nak baca datuk punya kolum. Mula kerja semua buku Datuk saya cari dan beli. Tahu saja ada buku baru AKJ, saya mesti cari cepat2. Malaysian Business saya langgan bertahun2 sebab minat AKJ.

Jd saya kira saya mmg sokong AKJ bukan setakay baca blog percuma semata tapi sanggup keluar duit juga.

Tapi sejak setahun lebih ni saya macam dah x rasa perlu baca tulisan AKJ. Dah tak rasa bijak pon.

Apapun keadaan, semua salahsekarang ni. Asyik2 perli PM, tak betul saja.

Muak pula tengok apalagi nak baca, macam dah kering idea. Spin terlebih. Tun M kritik sekali dalam satu tenpoh masa lama, itu logik dan boleh diterim tapi AKJ sudah macam bukan penerima anugerah besar kewartawanan.

Kritikan kepada Pakatan Rakyat tak pula nampak "over." ... AKJ akan nafikan tapi kelihatan AKJ sedang alami sindrom kecewa, sindrom terpinggir. Maaf sangat.

Lahuma said...


Semuanya berpunca kerana rasuah disana sini diMalaysia.
Itu yang berjaya dikesan.Yang bebas apa nak jadi.
Rasuah bukan prsepsi lagi.Sudah kenyataan.
Jabatan Kastam bukan nila setitik tetapi lebih dari itu kalau bedasarkan berita terkini.

Keselamatan pun ada juga kaitan rasuah.SPRM bekerja lah kuat lagi.Hapuskan rasuah.

Judi haram dan judi halal ada rasuah.Segala projek dan tender pun ada unsur rasuah.

Harapan rakyat 1 Malaysia agar rasuah cepat-cepat dihapuskan.
Jangan pilih apa apa jenis bulu.

Pegawai sudah pasti Melayu/Islam yang amalkan lima rukun Islam.Bagi mereka cuma babi sahaja haram.Yang lain boleh runding.

SPRM perlu wujudkan perisik bebas yang profesinal mengesan gejala rasuah ini.

Paling menjolok mata bila lori pasir bawa pasir air menitis atas jalan diwaktu panas.Bertimbun macam gunung.

Cerita di Penang macam ada suatu tak kena.Ramai faham .Ini semua agenda politik sahaja.
PDRM perlu tegas dan tepat.serta adil.Bidang kuasa persekutuan dan negeri.

Orang Kedah kata KAWAQ ada dimana-mana.

Terima kasih Dato.


1. I would like to thank Sdr Fendy Ahmad for his critique. I accept it in good spirit, more so since he is follower of my writing since his schooling days. Thank you.

2. Saya tidak kecewa dan saya tidak berasa terpinggir. Kalau saya jenis yang mudah kecewa, tentulah sudah lama saya berhenti bersuara.

3. If I am desperate for recognition and wanting to be in the political mainstream, I can. I just need to sing praises for those in power. But that's not my intention.

4. This country and its past leaders have served me well. My generation is probably the luckiest and the best served. We were transformed from poverty and ignorance to become confident Malaysians who can take on the world.

5. Why I continue to speak up is because I want my children and grandchildren to benefit as much from this beloved country of ours as I did. I don't want their present and future to be jeopardized by bad government and poor governance.

6. You may not have to believe me when I say a lot of Malaysians are desperate. But do read this report in the Star (an MCA paper) at this address:

7. People must be desperate financially when they borrowed from Ah Long.

8. Whatever happens to the koperasi, SME Bank and the so-called high savings rate?

9. And they are even more desperate when they can't repay the Ah Long. They can get killed.

10. People borrow to spend because they no longer earn enough. They no longer earn enough because the economy is no longer productive and equitable.

11. Surely the PM with his well-informed staff and advisers are aware of this. Or do they?

Thank you.

RD. said...

Pada pendapat saya, salah satu sebab mengapa jenayah di kalangan anak Melayu meningkat adalah cara kita mengajar agama di sekolah. Untuk meningkatkan ketakwaan, selalu kita dengar ayat-ayat, "beribadat sekian-sekian, bagaikan mendapat ganjaran pahala beratus atau beribu kali ganda". Cara ini akan menjuruskan sesaorang melakukan ibadat atau kebaikan demi menagih habuan atau balasan. Bukan kerana sayangkan Dia, negara atau sesiapa.

Yang paling bahaya, kita mezahirkan peluang menebus dosa kepada anak-anak kecil.
Saya pernah cerita mengenai anak, yang saya tangkap mencuri basikal. Bila saya nasihatkannya, dengan berkata mencuri itu berdosa, dia jawab, "Esok Arit besar, Arit pergi Haji, habislah dosa Arit, Abah".
Saya tak tahu dari mana dia belajar, naik Haji boleh tebus dosa sesama manusia.

Unknown said...

Last year my house was broken into by two Nepalese at about 3am. The police came. I gave the police a copy of the CCTV recording.

From then on, I don't like foreign labours/workers. They are bad and causing a lot of troubles. I guess clandestine activities are their collective norm. I sent my maid back. It is DIY now... that's the real solution.

Some people leaving in gated communities still employ personal Gurkhas to guard their homes. Soon, all the government roads into housing estates would have guards and security. They collect the monthly fees but did not want to maintain or service the roads.

Somebody is milking the community. Just check how much is the collection and expenses lah. Do you think the AJK or promoters are doing this on pro bono basis?

I think it is not a manifestation of collective desperation, but a collective malady which needs a collective cure.

Arunzab said...

An exellent article Datuk. Very well said . As an old soldier I can flash my mind back to the early emergency and relate your story to that period of time. From Raub to KL we had to pass 7 road blocks to be checked. To day in Taman Tun Dr Ismail alone you have to pass through at least 15 road blocks if you wanted to pass along all the internal roads . Then there is the Brahim's Hill also in TTDI Hills which is a no go area unless you are residing there. Any one else has got to get clearance from the ' IGP '


Desperado 3: In less than three weeks (almost coinciding with taking MAS private), Khazanah Nasional Berhad had gone to the market to borrow – not once but twice. It issued a US$500-million (RM1.6 billion) seven-year Sukuk (Syariah compliant bond) yesterday. On Aug 19 it sold RM1.5 billion Sukuk. The latest bond is backed by TNB shares. That’s what I read in the NST and Star. So Khazanah is desperate. It does not have reserves for the RM6-billion bailout of MAS. It has to borrow. So how can the government blame the rakyat for borrowing?

Desperado 4: PM said MAS RM6-billion restructuring is not a bailout. He told all of us that the money SHALL be recovered. Can trust aa….? According the Star, Khazanah had before this spent RM7 billion on MAS. So the grand total is RM13 billion. So I still say, pay off MAS staff, close or sell the airline. Khazanah has neither the money nor the credibility to be the MAS’s sugar daddy.

Desperado 5: Refer to my story on the desperate Janda Baik housewife. In my desperation to be useful, I called an import pemuda harapan bangsa who is also an important political operator in the PMO and asked him to look into the matter. Now if I bump into the woman again, I SHALL confidently tell her that her desperation for school bus service has been brought to the attention of the PMO. Or shall I say the PM?

Sdr Arunzab, I know. I do pass one or two of these barricades in TDDI and during the communist emergency my kampung had a Home Guard bunker and to travel from Pendang to Selama, Perak we had to pass through several police and military roadblocks but still could not beat the roadblocks and barricades in KL and PJ now.

Thank you.

Unknown said...

"Khazanah has neither the money nor credibility to be MAS's sugar daddy".

Not only RM6.0 billion, any billion also can borrow one. Central banks globally have got their monetary-easing arsenal to cope with any crisis. But alas, there are (competitive easing) would be exhausted soon and there will be a financial meltdown. Then it will not be collective desperation but Great collective Depression.

msh said...

Salam Dato.

Sdra Lahuma kata.." rasuah bukan lagi persepsi...ianya kenyataan".

Sy setuju 100%.

Perkara rasuah diMalaysia ini bukan lah baru.....sudah lama sngat....dan yg ramai ditangkap adalah dari bangsa Melayu Islam.

Yg anehnya...ianya tiada pula tanda2 berkurangan.

Rasuah juga yg menyebab...kegiatan bertentangan undang2 seperti mesin judi haram...Pati...Along...berleluasa.

Kini bila sy membaca berita perihal penjawat awam yg dtangkap kerana tiada lagi rasa simpati...malah berharap agar dihukum saja.

Ini kerana sy sudah bosan dgn mereka yg mengamal rasuah ini kerana banyak sngat kesan buruk yg berlaku akibat dari perbuatan rasuah ini.....kesannya tidak perlu lah huraikan lagi.

Dato....keresahan dan segala apa 'desperation' yg rakyat majoriti lalui ini seperti yg Dato lontarkan..memang nyata dan bukan lagi suatu persepsi.

PM...Menteri dan VVip tentu tidak merasai nya....sebab mereka berada 'didunia yg berlainan'.

Sy pernah juga berkata bahawa...Pemimpin kita...sama ada dari Kerajaan atau Pembangkang cuma berminat pd kuasa dan agenda2 yg mereka sendiri letakan.

Segala visi dan misi cuma diketahui oleh mereka sahaja.

Apa2 yg mereka sebut..seperti 'Rakyat didahulukan....pencapaian diutamakan....atau Negara Kebajikan...bla bla..."..cuma retorik...sekadar memancing undi sahaja.

Jika tidak...masakan PKR terang2 berkata Manifesto pun dikira bukan janji.

Bagi sy....pembangkang pun serupa saja....malah lagi teruk.

PKR dan DAP terang2...mempraktik Nepostima dan cukup 'autocratic' dlm cara pemerintahan.

Manakala PAS..pun lebih kurang...teruknya.. 'flip flop' dan mengarut habis dgn pinsip perjuangan mereka.

Hata...apa lagi yg boleh rakyat harapkan?

Terima kasih

Lahuma said...


Sdr msh.Rakyat selalu terdedah pada tokoh-tokoh yang kemaruk kuasa dan pangkat.
Rakyat dijadikan alat melalui broker-broker politik mereka.
Bila dapat kuasa wujud pula broker ekonomi poket sendiri dengan pelobinya.
Disinilah rasuah bermula dan hidup subur.

Jadilah kerajaan kelam kabut.

Terima kasih Dato.

Ghab said...

One thing for sure we are not living in an utopian world and certainly it is not naturally a secured world either.

I am nobody and my name is nobody, what you made of me?

1) Chauvinism will never end as long as the immigrant minds worship that Penang Tokkongs.

2) Chauvinism will never end as long as the immigrant minds who thought that I never know how to wash my own underwear.

3) Chauvinism will never end if the immigrant minds who want my home to be their homes.

4) Chauvinism will never end if the immigrant minds who made claimed that my heavenly are theirs.

5) Chauvinism will never end as long as the immigrant minds want to make my tradition, culture and language as theirs.

But I don't care as long as I have my "Kalimah Shahadah" to keep me in peacefully united and togetherness with the majority souls of my Muslim Umah, these Chauvinistic Pigs have to bite their own bullets.

These are my stances. If anyone who thinks that I am a racist ... that's his damned bloody problem!

ismail muda said...

Datuk, berape banyak kah agaknya peruntukan keselamatan digunakan utk tujuan politik? Bukan kah peruntukan ini sepatutnya utk rakyat jelata? Berapa agaknya kos mengintip yg dikeluarkan utk faedah parti yg memerintah??
Negara kita tetap mundur dan makin mundur. Benar kata Dato rumah kediaman di negara kita kena dipasang gril, gate besi & mcm2 utk elak pencuri. Semua tak selamat dah. Waimah, mesjid surau tempat ibadah pun selalu digelidah curi. Sebaliknya rakyat dinegara maju banyak dpat faedah dari bajet Kerajaan. Pendek kata bayar cukai & kena gst pun berbaloi. Cctv dipasang di merata tempat sampai di pekan2 kecil pun. Polis nya ramai memberi khidmat kpd rakyat. Negara maju jugak punya peralatan keselamatan yg canggih. Pelancong selamat dan rasa bebas ke sana kemari.
Penghuni kediaman di negara kita satu taman terpaksa pasang gate sendiri dan menggaji org Nepal, Pakistan, Bangla dll jadi pak guard. Penghuni terpaksa bayar kos kawalan gate antara rm50-rm250 sebulan bergantong peralatan yg digunakan. Golongan middle class ke atas terpaksa menanggong kos menjaga keselamatan masing2.
Bilangan pendatang 5 juta lebih spt yg dilaporkan bole gugat kesejahteraan rakyat. Kes rusuhan pendatang banyak kali berulang. Apa langkah protect rakyat negara kita?? Apa dasar Kerajaan utk jangkapanjng? Belum ada ternampak raut wajah pak Menteri kita resah gundah & gusar bab2 keselamatan rakyat???

otoote said...

"baldatan aminan wa rabbun ghafur" roughly translated....negeri yang aman dan Tuhan Maha Pengampun.
Apakah yang menyebabkan Tuhan angkat rasa aman rasa selamat rasa tenang dari bumi ini?
Literally we are living in terms of safety....economics....moral it and we are uncertain of everything.
I have no concrete answer myself. Can our values changes....our leaders....or our ulamaks are at fault. Perhaps a combination of them all.
But you sum up nicely...the desperations and helplessness which is fast turning to hopelessness.
How do we stem the rot???? Or it is just too massive to cordon now?

Kawanlama said...

Saya amat setuju apa yang disebut oleh Sdra Fendy...

Semua yang berlaku ini hasil daripada polisi kerajaan sejak 30 tahun lalu, tapi malangnya Dato Kadir hanya dapat melihat dari sudut yang dekat dan sempit.

Dulu beliau tidak lah serancak begini dalam mengkritik beberapa polisi kerajaan di bawah kemimpinan Tun Mahathir yang terbukti membebankan rakyat.

Yang pasti bukan untuk berlaku adil kepada generasi akan datang..

About Me

My photo
I was born in 1947 in Kedah. I came from a rice farming family. I have been a journalist since 1969. I am the Editor-in-Chief of magazine publishing company, Berita Publishing Sdn Bhd. I was Group Editor NST Sdn Bhd and Group Editor-in-Chief of NSTP Bhd between 1988 and 2000. I write fortnightly column “Other Thots” in the Malaysian Business magazine, Kunta Kinte Original in Berita Harian and A Kadir Jasin Bercerita in Dewan Masyarakat. Books: Biar Putih Tulang (1998), Other Thots – Opinions & Observations 1992-2001 (2001), The Wings of an Eagle (2003), Mencari Dugalia Huso (2006), Damned That Thots (2006), Blogger (2006), PRU 2008-Rakyat Sahut Cabaran (2008), Komedi & Tragedi-Latest in Contemporary Malaysian Politics (2009) and Membangun Bangsa dengan Pena (2009).