6:41pm 31/08/2022
Emotional blackmail as the driving force in Umno-Baru
By:Mariam Mokhtar

Is it education or emotional blackmail that drives Malays, in particular Umno-Baru and PAS Malays?

Despite the billions of ringgits injected into the bumiputra community, and the relative ease with which they can enroll at institutions of higher learning, education has clearly failed many Malays.

Education was not the driving force amongst the 300-strong crowd of Malays who had gathered in front of the palace on August 24, urging the King to grant the convicted felon, Najib Abdul Razak, a royal pardon.

If Najib were to be pardoned, the move may backfire and threaten the position of the monarchy. Moreover, Malaysia’s reputation would be in tatters.

Desperation, not education, was the driving force behind Najib’s ‘sumpah laknat‘ (curse-swear) at the mosque days before he was jailed. Upright Muslims do not dishonor Islam in this flippant manner.

Did the Umno-Baru supporters forget their primary and secondary school education when they claimed Najib was innocent?

Do these Malays not trust the judiciary? Are they saying that the nine judges from the High Court, the Appeal Court and the Federal Court who had sentenced Najib were wrong?

Did their teachers, ustaz, and parents fail to teach them the simple lesson that stealing and lying are sinful, and that corruption destroys lives and can kill? Are the simple values they learnt, even at kindergarten level, lost on them?

Today’s Malay is shaped by the influence of his family, the interactions (or lack of) within the wider community, his school life, his after-school activities, religious classes, peer pressure, Friday sermons, additional religious classes in mosques, and social media.

Six decades of Umno-Baru and PAS domination have weakened the minds of the Malays. Many lack the ability to reason and think for themselves.

To learn English is construed as being trapped in colonialism. To appreciate western music, food and clothes is seen as ignoring one’s roots. Brainwashing by the ulamas have made many Malays fearful of the cross and intolerant of other religions.

Some Malays will deface photos of a pig, and when they see dogs, want to harm and possibly kill them.

The irony in Kelantan is that many Malay men will regularly frequent the flesh-pots in Thai border towns, but when it comes to mealtime, they will only consume halal food.

You and I may call this hypocrisy, but they will term it a religious requirement.

The warped principles of Malay supremacy have made many Malays ride roughshod over the non-Malays. They largely disregard the rights of people of other faiths and cultures.

Decades of intense political and religious indoctrination have failed the Malay. He is warned not to criticize his elders or leaders even when they have committed a wrongdoing.

The family or party name must be protected at all costs. The wrongdoer escapes scot-free. Many become disgruntled.

The Malays have ears, but many of them fail to listen. They have eyes to look at their surroundings, but many of them fail to see. They have mouths, but are dumbstruck when they see a wrongdoing being committed.

Emotional blackmail, not education, appears to be the driving force for many Malays.

Decades of brainwashing have made them dependent on their political and religious leaders to make important decisions for them.

When Umno-Baru and PAS tell the Malays that only they can protect the Malays and defend Islam, very few Malays asked why they needed protection, and from whom?

Similarly, why was there a need to defend Islam? Malays/Muslims hold the bulk of the power in Malaysia, occupy key posts in the ministry, in government and the civil service.

Political indoctrination has crippled the Malay mind. When politicians steal people’s money, the ordinary Malay ignores the bigger picture, in that the corrupt politicians have robbed future generations of a future.

When PAS President Hadi Awang claimed that non-Muslims and non-Malays were the main causes of corruption and were responsible for damaging the country’s politics and economy, Ismail Sabri should have fired him as the prime minister’s special envoy to the Middle East.

Hadi has shamed Malaysians, in particular the Malays and Muslims with his racist rhetoric.

Hadi’s remarks were incendiary, but Ismail’s silence caused greater damage and created deeper divisions in the multicultural community.

Racist leaders cannot be allowed to continue as if they have done nothing wrong. Ismail failed to show leadership.

When Najib’s daughter and son were paraded in front of an Umno-Baru convention, many Umno-Baru supporters were tearful when his children praised Najib’s “sincerity” and kindness.

Did they forget that Najib had stolen billions of ringgits from the taxpayers?

Many Malaysians were imprisoned. Others lost their jobs. A few went missing or were killed.

Malaysia was forced to near bankruptcy and the country’s debt is a burden that our great-grandchildren will also have to bear.

Forget Stockholm syndrome, this is Malaysia syndrome which appears to be for more fascinating to other countries witnessing it.

Najib’s children were educated overseas. The money spent on their education has been wasted if they fail to appreciate that stealing is a crime. Their father abused his power.

Will the nation be able to recover every cent Najib stole? Did Najib apologize for shaming Malaysia, and for depriving Malaysians? No!

Emotional blackmail, not education, appears to be the driving force for many Malays.

Today, we celebrate 65 years of independence, but true Merdeka will only be achieved when the Malay can free himself from Umno-Baru and PAS’ mental cage.

Selamat Hari Merdeka!


  1. The Star: Pray for my father’s health and safety, Najib’s eldest son Nizar urges Umno members

(Mariam Mokhtar is a Freelance Writer.)


Mariam Mokhtar
Najib Razak


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