|Coming back home not that easy|
Happy National Day! Like what some of you did on that momentous day, I reflected on the course of my life took and looked at the major changes and milestones. One of them took place 10 years ago when I left Malaysia for Singapore to further my studies.
Before that, I had to decide whether to do the STPM, the A-Levels or go to UTM. I didn't like my chances for STPM and my parents could not afford to pay for my A-Levels at a private college. UTM did not reply to my application. Luckily, I did decently well in the SPM to be offered a scholarship to do my A-Levels in Singapore. I remembered being a bit sore with the limited opportunities back home but nevertheless, I was still proud to be Malaysian and loved the country. I vowed to return home and contribute after completing my studies.
Well, that was then. Not that I have become any less patriotic, but circumstances have changed. Since 2003, Malaysia's economic, social and religious climate has been deteriorating with each passing year. The cost of living is soaring while the economy is stagnant and the currency weak. It surprises me how expensive food, groceries and shopping merchandise in KL have become compared to 10 years ago. Conversely, Singapore's inflation rate is barely perceptible and purchasing power is still comfortable.
The crime rate here also seems to be getting from bad to worse. It doesn't bode well when a number of friends or relatives have first-hand or second-hand stories to share about encounters with thieves and robbers. Then you read about the ‘bigger thieves’ in the news - high-level corruption, mega-bailouts - and it gets more despairing. Can someone please explain to me how some politicians who are so obviously corrupt can get away scot-free and even carry on with business as usual?
The worst part, I feel, is religious extremism. Back in the 90s, I only remember reading about the odd news about some East Coast state trying to impose Islamic rule. Now, it seems like it has spread to the national level and suddenly Malaysia is declared an Islamic state, no matter what the constitution says. The judiciary is too meek, having not the courage to make bold judgments on sensitive religious cases.
Having said all that, I have not lost hope and still harbour the intention to return to Malaysia some day. I will vote in the next election and hope that the outcome will help reverse the current depressing situation.
Nasihat saya pada Mr. Ng, jika anda merasakan yang anda lebih selamat dan bahagia di sana, maka teruskan lah disana. Jika anda negara Malaysia ini kejam terhadap anda, maka tak usahlah kembali dan berbakti kepada nya.
Jika anda merasakan anda tiada peluang untuk berkerjaya dan berniaga, maka berniaga lah disana. Kerana pada kacamata ramai orang pada masa ini, semuanya tidak kena tentang Malaysia ini.
Maka teruskan lah perjuangan saudara untuk kesamaan dan meritokrasi di mana saudara rasa senang dan bahagia.
Manusia memang lebih menghargai apa yang ada pada orang lain, daripada apa yang ada pada dirinya sendiri.