Do you have any Malay friends?


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By: Wang Zeng Wen. (Translated name)

After looking through my daughter’s primary school Year 4 Bahasa Malaysia textbook, I affirmed all these years the performance of the pupils in this subject was not satisfactory. Based on the data of independent secondary school students, it was found that students who scored excellent grade in the Bahasa Malaysia paper were very few.

From the perspective of the students, it was well known that most Chinese primary school pupils were not interested in Bahasa Malaysia. There were many factors that caused this problem. If we linked it to schools then it was true that the Chinese primary and Independent Chinese schools were too monolingual in nature. It was a fact especially in Independent Chinese schools.

From the perspective of the society, the people in the Chinese community verbally emphasize on Bahasa Malaysia and everywhere we could see students attending tuition for this subject. However the usage of Bahasa Malaysia is only confined to government departments. In other sectors the usage of Bahasa Malaysia is still optional. Thus it is impossible to emphasis on Bahasa Malaysia as it is against the intrinsic drive to excel.

No serious effort to fulfill works in transcending race

Furthermore the Chinese community never appreciates the Malay culture and some regard the Malay culture as an “inferior culture” compared to the high profile Chinese culture. Think over, the Chinese students were never educated to respect and appreciate the Malay culture since young. Furthermore the educational system was biased against Chinese education. Consequently it caused Chinese parents to neglect Bahasa Malaysia. Parents regarded Bahasa Malaysia as an important subject but with no significant practical value.

Besides that in a multiracial country, every race has its own lifestyle and everybody tries to tolerate each other in their own individual way. The reflection from the Chinese primary and Chinese independent schools showed that the Chinese students and students of other races did not have any distinctive integration education. Hence our children and I never had any close Malay friends since young. Such situation is very distinctive In the Chinese society especially areas from the west coast to the north or southern Malaysia.

At this point, it suddenly linked to the list of contacts in the hand phone. Even though it may have thousands of contacts but none of them belong to a close Malay friend. Let’s ponder. After spending half of our life on this land, we still did not have a close Malay friend. My circle of friends was indeed very small!

The Chinese schools worked very hard to improve their Bahasa Malaysia performance in the examination but never encouraged their students to appreciate the Malay culture. Our future generations will live on this land yet we were not serious in fulfilling works of transcending race. Eventually you are you and I am I. We are only ships in passing. What is there to mention about racial integration?

Original Source: 你有馬來朋友嗎? Malaysian Chinese News



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