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Oct 19, 2014

5/10/14 DARE MUKRIZ BE THE CHAMPION.......should he not learn from the Big Flood of Noah!

Today, as I look at the way the Malays practicing Islam, I would say, will drag the Muslim Malays to backwardness. The Malays are "Malaynizing" Islam rather keeping Islam as a universal faith. Indeed I can't understand why the past and present Malays leadership are not able to forcefully change the "Malaynizing" of Islam. Instead of turning the Malays into Muslims, they made Islam to be Malay. Is not such an act not similar to the Jews' with regard to how Islam being transformed into Judaism? I could see, the way Islam being practiced by majority of the Malays is going in road into the old Hinduism practicing of the Malays before the 13th century. With the coming of the Western Colonizers in the 15th century, their introduction of the concept of the Separation of the Mosques (Churches) and the State, Islam indeed was being forced to focus only on ritual matters. There and then Fardhu Ain and Fardhu Kifayah becoming a matter of imbalanced treatment, when both indeed are the total responsibilities of the Caliph. In Malacca, on the 18th Oct., 2014 the State had organized 10,000 Muslims gathering to praise Muhammad SAW. From TV Al Hijerah life telecast, I could see the the double standard of portrayal between the one organized by the ruling government and  the opposition. Islam now seem greatly being hijacked for one's course well known to oneself. I have no issue in the need to praise Muhammad SAW. It is well signified in the Al Quran. The question I'm posing is, what does the Al Quran meaning of praising Muhammad SAW as against the Malays practices? Indeed I have trouble to synchronize between the need by the Al Quran and the practices of the Malays. Islam instead of being an Adeen is now becoming a cultural ritual for the Malays.

(2) Last week I spent a bit of time in Gurun, a district to the Coast of Kedah. I specially visited the hardcore place of PAS ie Sg Limau, where the late Azizan, the Chief Minister had been representing the areas for many years to his death. Sg Limau is a paddy farming community. Some are involved in coastal fishing. Indeed, the place feel very natural, serene and lovely for first time visitors like myself. One thing very glaring in Sg Limau is poverty. It seem there are abundance beauties in poverty. Kedah as all Malaysians know, is among the top five poorest state in the Federation. Such status is indeed a stigma to Kedah since Independent to this day. I wonder why can't Kedah move out of such paradigm? People can argue that Kedah is meant to be poor to support the national rice requirement. The same seem to apply then for Perlis, Kelantan, Trengganu and even Seberang Prai, Penang. Is it true?

(3) My best guess why Kedah (and all the Malay States) is under poverty, is due to the cultural values of the Malays. The Malays is having difficulty to sit down to talk things the Islamic Ways. In most instances, the Malays love to settle matters the Malays' Way. The Malays' Way emphasizes on their immediate feeling of the matter while Islam require for comprehensive balancing of all aspects of lives. In Islam, both the needs of Fardhu Ain and Kifayah must be well considered in deciding whatever matter. In simplicity, Islam requires for a proper community caucus, while the Malays may impose on a one-way-traffic decision making. In Islam, the Ummah ie the Rakyat matter most to individuals or groups, yet today Malays deviated greatly from such deed. Why do the Malays having such a culture? Indeed, a one-way-traffic decision making  culture is a thousands years inherited norm of the Malays since before the coming of Islam, particularly in the olden classical Malays. In those days, the leaders decided all. The Rakyat were mere to follow, to submit. Such was the culture re-enforced by probably the Buddhism and Hinduism and dying hard to this days when the co-existence of the priests and the Raja mutually benefit parasiting onto the Malays society. The Malays had been the subject of living to threat and coerce by the "God" and their leaders. Unfortunately, to this day, even when Islam is to bring liberty, the Malays continue to hold to the teaching spirit of fear and coerce.

(4) Kedah was among the prominent state in the classical Malays' time which was considered hardcore in the Buddhism and Hinduism era and the early spreed of Islam, then Western Colonization, indeed is now torn between the conservative and the liberal Malays. The conservative Malays are bounded into the cultural ritual Islamic practices. Indeed, if one really study them, they are indeed the pure Malays. They just want to preserve the Malays' entity to the purest, while the so called liberal Malays, these are the today conventional educated Malays. I could say, just as the Kelantanese, most of the conservative Malays were and are drop-out of the present conventional education system. Indeed, the liberal Malays practicing of Islam, is just similar to the conservative ones mirroring the cultural ritual. The conservative Malays whom had inherited the longing fear and coerce style of Islamic teaching had greatly influenced even among the liberal Malays since the State (and Nation) had neglected the proper teaching and spread of Islam. The split among the Rakyat is the result of the State and Nation not able to comprehend the teaching of Islam the Islamic way. Worst and unfortunately the liberal Malays whom are making up the State governing system, thus far has yet to be able to come to a compromise to understand and meet the needs of the conservative and the liberal much materialistic.

(5) Let me take the case of Sg. Limau. The nearest town is Gurun, a Cowboy Town indeed. The bustling Sg, Petani is a mere 20 KM away. The prominent towering Gunung Jerai Complex, is located within the vicinity. The Strait of Malacca is a mere stone throw, indeed forming the long sea coast of Sg Limau. Geographically the area is flat with good water retention colloid soil structure. Sg. Limau is a great agriculture area. Pulau Bunting, where the State  once intended to build a Coastal Port is now ever ready to be taped to give birth for the prosperity of Gurun. Indeed, the strategic development of Kulim-Sg Petani-Gurun could lift Kedah into a great Industrial State. What needed is a simple strategic infrastructure development. The Kedah government just need to build a port if feasible at Pulau Bunting, a Bypass Highway from say Gurun to Perak (somewhere to bypass the congested Seberang Prai, Penang area). There is a great potential of such port to even serving the East Coast of Southern Tahiland and Myanmar as well as with the North Sumatra. The said Bypass Highway will make Baling and Sik the two most poverty stricken districts to greater economic access. The Bypass Highway definitely would give both Sik and Baling opportunities to open up their hinterland. One thing that teh Kedah government had not pay serious attention is the prospect of Bukit Kayu Hitam as Inland Port. My quick visit of the Area, indicated the great potential of Bukit Kayu Hitam as key connectivity between Malaysia-Thailand on the West Coast side. It can be expanded to cover the inflow of goods from Myanmar as well. Accordingly the backyard of Seberang Perai, Penang will benefit greatly from this ByPass Highway. Surely, the intended airport in Kulim sounds reasonable at this juncture, yet I would believe, the Highway may be of a better choice. Keeping and upgrading the present Kepala Batas, Alor Setar airport may be a better development spread strategy. Shifting the airport to Kulim may place Kubang Pasu and all those northern districts in a very disadvantage position. The development in Kedah, should never compromise their brother Malays in Perlis. Additionally, Kedah may need to built a good Coastal Highway stretching from Kuala Kedah to say Kuala Muda. While this can draw the urban tourists from Penang, it may also giving Kuala Kedah a better advantage as entry point to Langkawi. I can also see, such roading system would potentially turn Kedah into the Bali of Malaysia. Kedah hinterland, must be well planned to fit into the greater Tourism Hub of Langkawi as well as the urbanized tourism of Penang. The scenic green and golden yellow paddy fields would provides the added hinterland cultural taste to the overall tourism industry of the Region. Sure if Mukriz Mahathir could see these, Kedah In Shaa Allah will be freed from the poverty stigma. More economic choices will be made available to the people.

(6) Liberating Kedah from poverty would inspired the further poverty eradication trickling effect to the Malays in Perlis, Seberang Perai, Balik Pulau, Perak and definitely in Kelantan, Trengganu and Pahang if not Sabah and Saraawk as well. Getting the Malays out of poverty, making them to afford all the economic opportunities of the State is a need to curb all the possible social issues which may place the whole Nation into great social chaotic ravine. Indeed today political and religious split among the Malays is a manifestation of the material divide within the Nation. But what would be Mukriz Mahathir greatest challenge?

(7) When I went around to visit few families in Sg. Limau, the people (though not representative, yet the truth are there) seem to object the State intention of building the Coastal Road in the Area to realise the development of the Port at Pulau Bunting. The objection seem to come from the religious conservative groups. Islam is now being hijacked and branded to be anti-development or even worst among the liberal Malays Islam being used to perpetuate materialism. Well, Mukriz (representing the liberal Malays) is now facing a great delima of chicken and eggs. No port means no road. No road means no port. No port, no road, means no grand industrial development. Both the State and the people will and have been greatly loosing. The State is not able to move fast in the pursuit of Industrialization. The people will remain as paddy farmers at controlled prices which cost the Nation for high subsidies. Indeed keeping the people to their present paradigms would enslave them into poverty forever. More poor people meaning much easy maneuvering and exploitation to all sort of interest. Is this right?

(7) Right or wrong is not exactly the issue. The issue I would believe the misconception on both parties. The conservative Malays are seeing development is eroding their purest cultural values. Thus they used Islam as the check gate.While the liberal Malays are working hard to propagate Islam as a dynamic adeen yet their words and acts are to the contrary. Their faces are masked with all sorts of materialism. Mistrust and misconception run a long parallel stigma to the Malays poverty eradication. What would be the solution? Let me put it straight as what I believe the conservatives are thinking and fearing of. They are poor people. They live on their paddy land. They earned the lands from long hard struggle. Not many has more than 4-5 relong of which 2.50 relong makes an acre or five relong makes a hectare. Each hectare could produced only less or roughly 10.00 metric ton of rice value at RM12,000.00. The most likely income for 4-5 relongs would be RM24,000.00-30,000.00 per year of 2.5 rounds of planting seasons. That would very much depend on the good weather and not much destruction due to pests attack. Nonetheless, the case is always not easy to get a good harvest. Secondly, the people had been staying in the same place for generations. They know how to survive within their environs. They are in support of each others in time of hardship, as well as enjoying themselves together in time of prosperity. In the word of the Penan and Iban in Sarawak, their lands are sacred which are their lives, their souls, their culture, and their religion.

(8) Now come Mr. Government whom wants to bring greater prosperity to the people by taking their land, compensate them, and resettle them elsewhere. Let think and see it this way. This Mr. Government, let me take your position, compensate you at my market value, and left you elsewhere, what would be your reaction? Definitely, Islam then becoming the victim of circumstances. Resentment and pushing of the two sides makes Islam being caught unnecessarily in the cross fire. Indeed in the course of human being, the two groups of Malays, Allah was and is to be blamed, what a shame? Is there a solution to this polemic? To me, it may sound simple, but the complexity I could appreciate, yet as a caliph, a man in his original purpose of creation, the leaders must shoulder the duties and responsibilities to care for their people doesn't matter who they are, what more to say among those whom solemn to their Sahadah. Think this way. Discuss with the people, that they will still have their inflow of annual income, they move at no cost ie their homes will be better and they have to pay nothing, and their future wealth is secured. The inflow must be real. It must never ever anymore a conventional economic presumption whereby High tide raise all boats. Such persumption is proven not benefiting the Malays, worts indeed had robe the Malays of their dignity as the men of the soil. The people m,ust be a true partner to the whole development. A real participating partners rather a by standers. I believe if such are the criteria to move them out and to take their villages or lands for developments, then only I could see the development will be meaningful to them. How such could be facilitated, I would believe, that is where a good hard working and Ummah concern brain will come up with smart modules. Allah as He had promised, One who cares for His people, surely He will bless one with His hidayah. In time of chaos at about 1,300 years ago, Allah purposely made Umar Abdul Aziz as a model that we should be looking at today.

(9) Mukriz need to push hard his civil servants to be with the people and for the people. He can, and he must. Muhammad SAW did such during his adminsitration. The same applied to the Khalifah Arrashidun. Kedah State Civil Servant as I see them, they are on the deadlock with all sort of comfort and complacent due to mental block. They had not change from public working culture to corporate culture. But Mukriz need to be balanced in his approach especially with regard to the corporatization as driven by Mohd Najib and Idris Jala under their GTP strategy. Kedah corporatization approach should be unique by itself, where I believe true partnership with the people is a must. Kedah State Civil Servants may need to be trained, inspired and transformed into the Ummah Corporate Development Muslims. To me there are three Malay Billionaires that could help develop Kedah to the best ie Syed Mokthar, Daim Zainuddin and Mokzani Mahathir. I believe, Mukriz Mahathir by himself and or through Mahathir Mohammed could influence these philanthropies to do great for their own State and people. The Malays controllled GLCs such as Tabung Haji, Sime Darby, and PNB should be able to complement them. Definitely, the chocking Chinese Tycoons in Penang and Kuala Lumpur could lend their hands as well. To me, it is great if Mukriz could explore the profit sharing partnership between the people-government-corporate in ensuring sustainable Income Growth among the people while the State gain from Tax and GDP Growth. Mukriz should champion the need to share the State and private sector wealth with the people in a true One Nation Building Strategy. In Sarawak, indeed Taib Mahmud had worked on this, yet politic and poor civil servie comprehension of the matter seem to fail him. It may look like a modified Nationalization but indeed I would say it is a Commune Module broadly practiced in German, Korea, Japan and Taiwan.  The birth of Honda, Toyota, Hundai, Samsung, Bern Meyers etc are the products of such initially and sustained as commune module to this day. Indeed Public Listed Company is another modification of such module but limited to the have rather the Rakyat as a whole. If Mukriz can do such, he indeed would come to meeting what Allah had tried to inspire from the collection of followers into the boat of Noah during the big flood punishment of Allah onto His digressing people. I believe, among the general Malays, they read the fate of the Noah community was a mere punishment, yet I would strongly believe, such is the Most Knowledgeable characteristic of Allah to inspire we the Muslims that this world could be still in harmony and prosperity if we know how to manage all the differing ideologies and even enemies. Noah did it and he saved all living creatures to this day. Could Mukriz or even Mohd Najib learn from it?

(10) Dare Mukriz be the champion of real gainful change to the Malays? Mat Saman with all sorts of limitation had done his, and made the Kedahans prosper and well known at his time. Mahathir Mohammed had done the backbone to the development of Modern Kedah, yet, will Mukriz Mahathir dare to do even better and unique for his very own Malays? Mukriz must never fall trap to High Growth to Suffer that Mohd Najib is aiming for. My hope is for Mukriz to spearhead a true Islamic Economic Management of the Malays and the State for the good of everybody. In Shaa Allah. May Allah bless him with all the needed Taufik and Hidayah.

Kuching International Airport, Kuching
19 Oct., 2014

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