01 December, 2010
KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 30 (Bernama) -- The terminology "Ketuanan Melayu" or Malay Supremacy need not be debated because it does not exist in the country's constitution, said history expert, Prof Emeritus Tan Sri Dr Khoo Kay Kim.
He said that from the historical aspect, only the Rulers' Supremacy was stated in the constitution where the people must show their loyalty to the Rulers.
"In the past, 'Malay Supremacy' was never mentioned within the Malay community. In history, such things are incorrect. What is stated in the constitution is only the Rulers' Supremacy, where you show loyalty to the state where you reside in.
"The Malays obtained the special privileges because they are the subjects of the Ruler. The position of the Malays is given special consideration and need not be disputed," he said when contacted by Bernama, here Tuesday night.
He was asked to comment on the statement by Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) president Datin Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail on the Malay Supremacy in her policy speech at the 7th National Congress of the party on Sunday.
Dr Wan Azizah called for the abolition of the concept of Malay Supremacy to enable Malaysian children to grow up with the vision of a 'race of integrity' or 'Malay of Integrity'.
Khoo said the terminology 'Malay Supremacy' was only raised by politicians purely for political purposes, and he observed that politicians were now frequently raising issues that could lead to racial confrontations.
"Politicians should focus on their services to the public, helping the people. They should not encourage the people to quarrel," he said.
Meanwhile, the Director of the Institute of Ethnic Studies, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM), Prof Datuk Dr Shamsul Amri Baharuddin shared Khoo's opinion that the term Malay Supremacy was coined by politicians in portraying the political and economic position of the Malays.
Questioning Dr Wan Azizah's motive in raising the issue, he said the statement by the wife of PKR de facto leader, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, was merely a political gimmick and purely to cover up the crisis faced by the party currently.
"I don't know why the issue was raised. What I notice is "Anwar's Supremacy" in the PKR. It is Anwar's Supremacy that must be abolished. The Malay Supremacy is merely to demolish Anwar's Supremacy. In my opinion, the concept (Malay Supremacy) does not exist," he said.
He said Dr Wan Azizah should re-examine what was meant by the term supremacy and should not question the special privileges of the Malays which had been enshrined ever since the era of the Malay Sultanate.
Shamsul Amri said that looking from the economic aspect, the Chinese community dominated 70 per cent of the economy while the Malays had only 30 per cent and there was no such thing as the Malays dominating in all aspects.
"If we look at it, the 70 per cent should be the supreme group. So, what does the Malay Supremacy show? What does supremacy mean? She (Dr Wan Azizah) herself is not clear on the meaning of supremacy," he said.
Dr Shamsul Amri said politicians should be thinking about issues that were relevant for discussion instead of raising issues that could bring about negative developments between the races.