UCA News

Malaysia

Race continues to stall Malaysia's reform

Government invites a backlash from supporters after stalling on promised changes

Victor Merrick, Kuala Lumpur

Victor Merrick, Kuala Lumpur

Updated: November 04, 2019 06:22 AM GMT
Support Asia's largest network of Catholic journalists and editors
Support Asia's largest network of Catholic journalists and editors
Race continues to stall Malaysia's reform

Malaysian riot police block members of the ethnic Indian community protesting about discrimination at the Pudu temple in Kuala Lumpur in February 2010. Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad is struggling to negotiate the entrenched racial biases in multiethnic and multireglious Malaysia. (Photo by Saeed Khan/AFP)

Share this article :
As Malaysia struggles to break free of its past, it is becoming increasingly clear that any noble intentions its fledgling government has are being fundamentally undermined by irregular policy-making by chauvinists and their allies refusing desperately needed social reform in exchange for political favor.

A year after he became prime minister again after retiring in 2003, Mahathir Mohamad is struggling to negotiate the entrenched racial biases in multiethnic Malaysia. This does not bode well for a “new Malaysia” and the government's hopes to chart a path to developed nation status.

His failure to reform social policies means society is as unequal as before and his Pakatan Harapan alliance government, after its spectacular election win in May 2018 on the back of overwhelming support from minority ethnic Chinese and Indian voters, is in danger of losing their unselfish support.

A test of his government's popularity is in the works.

Click here to read the full article

Support UCA News...

As 2020 unfolds, we are asking readers like you to help us keep Union of Catholic Asian News (UCA News) free so it can be accessed from anywhere in the world at no cost.

That has been our policy for years and was made possible by donations from European Catholic funding agencies. However, like the Church in Europe, these agencies are in decline and the immediate and urgent claims on their funds for humanitarian emergencies in Africa and parts of Asia mean there is much less to distribute than there was even a decade ago.

Forty years ago, when UCA News was founded, Asia was a very different place - many poor and underdeveloped countries with large populations to feed, political instability and economies too often poised on the edge of collapse. Today, Asia is the economic engine room of the world and funding agencies quite rightly look to UCA News to do more to fund itself.

UCA News has a unique product developed from a view of the world and the Church through informed Catholic eyes. Our journalistic standards are as high as any in the quality press; our focus is particularly on a fast-growing part of the world - Asia - where, in some countries the Church is growing faster than pastoral resources can respond to - South Korea, Vietnam and India to name just three.

And UCA News has the advantage of having in its ranks local reporters that cover 22 countries and experienced native English-speaking editors to render stories that are informative, informed and perceptive.

We report from the ground where other news services simply can't or won't go. We report the stories of local people and their experiences in a way that Western news outlets simply don't have the resources to reach. And we report on the emerging life of new Churches in old lands where being a Catholic can at times be very dangerous.

With dwindling support from funding partners in Europe and the USA, we need to call on the support of those who benefit from our work.

Click here to find out the ways you can support UCA News. You can make a difference for as little as US$5...
UCAN Donate
YOUR DAILY
NEWSLETTER
Thank you. You are now signed up to our Daily Full Bulletin newsletter
 
Support UCA News

William J. Grimm, MM

Publisher

Union of Catholic Asian News

"As Pope Francis has said, we live not so much in an era of change as in a change of era. That is especially true in Asia and for the churches of Asia. UCA News is the dedicated, Asia-wide news and information service for the Church in Asia and we need your help to maintain the service."