Hornbill Unleashed

December 30, 2013

Bidding farewell to a year of absurdities

Filed under: Human rights,Politics — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:00 AM
Tags: , , ,

Lim Sue Goan

2013 is tapering to an end soon. Over the past one year, we have seen minor improvements, stagnation or even regression in many important areas in this country while getting ourselves amused by a good deal of ridiculous things.

Sin Chew Daily recently unveiled a list of ten most ridiculous things in Malaysia for 2013, including school principal marketing “clever pills,” oil leakage from factory resulting in major water supply disruption in Klang Valley, the delible indelible ink used in GE13, etc.

Such absurdities could have been arising from administrative irregularities or could also be from power abuse. For example, a national school principal has forced the students to buy “clever pills” out of power abuse.

Without substantial improvements in administrative management, enforcement and professionalism, it is anticipated that such absurdities will stage a definite comeback in 2014.

Looking back at the year 2013, we have not achieved much in terms of democracy, education, economy, anti-corruption effort, public security and public transportation, while our international ratings have not been that impressive too.

The May general election, meanwhile, saw a drastic drop in our democratic politics. As the curtain fell on the GE13, racism took the driver’s seat and we began to see some quarters questioning the choice of the Chinese voters.

If we really embrace democracy, there shouldn’t have been retaliatory actions after the general election. A more worrisome trend is that race-driven politics has become a predominant force, putting the country’s democracy to real test.

Umno has deviated from its middle path and this has bogged down its reform effort. For instance, the government has reinstated the Prevention of Crime Act (Amendment and Extension) 2013 to detain individuals without trial.

Where education development is concerned, the input has not been reciprocated proportionately. According to the latest report by Program for International Student Assessment (Pisa), Malaysia was ranked 52nd among 65 countries under study. While out students performed better in mathematics, we lagged behind in reading and science abilities. Our average score in mathematics was only 421, way below the average of 494 among OECD countries.

In the 2013/14 Times Higher Education rankings, none of our universities made it to the top 400 worldwide. As for the 2013/14 QS world university rankings, Universiti Malaya, the only one that made it to the top 200, declined from 156th place to 166th.

Our education ministry has failed to map out a policy to tackle the deteriorating rankings. Until and unless the Malaysian Education Blueprint 2013-2025 drawn by foreign consultants at a hefty price of RM20 million produces the desired results, there is no way we should feel optimistic of the country’s international rankings in 2014.

In the meantime, the MACC has not performed up to the mark in battling corruption as well. In addition to the irregularities unveiled in the AG’s report, Global Financial Integrity (GFI) has also reported that some RM173.84 billion of funds were siphoned out of the country illegally in 2011, putting the country at the fourth position globally.

Besides, criminal syndicates have reportedly bribed immigration officials at KLIA and LCCT to allow foreigners carrying fake documents to enter the country. Not too long ago, four airport customs officials were arrested for allegedly facilitating drug trafficking activities.

More ironically, three police officers suspected of money laundering activities involving RM6 million of funds were arrested last month, while another senior police officer carrying the Datuk title was interrogated.

Malaysia only made a slight improvement in the 2013 Corruption Perception Index (CPI) to 53rd place. For the fourth year in a row, Malaysia has been put under class 2 human trafficking observation list by the US state department, while the country dropped to 145th place in the 2013 world press freedom index.

2013 has also seen unbelievable absurdities in the country’s judiciary system. The killer of Chee Gaik Yap was acquitted and freed after the case was dragged on for seven long years. Without determined reforms in the prosecution’s competency, more cases will be lost in the year to come.

Although the police have initiated aggressive Ops Cantas meant to curtail criminal activities, more comprehensive strategies to fix the country’s public security issue need to be implemented.

2013 has been a lackluster year and we can hardly foresee any rosier prospect for the year ahead.


  1. Barang Naik pun tak boleh protest…next time they will say sendiri punya barang naik pun akan di-tangkap…susah betul lah this gomen….

    Comment by Jaq — December 30, 2013 @ 5:49 PM | Reply

  2. The wisest thing for Sarawakians to do in 2014 is to cry out loud before they hurt. It no good to cry out after your hurt especially you are extremely hurt by absurdities of the administration. Useless to cry at the Shell station,E-marts,Sessco. Do your crying in the rain!

    Comment by kira commonsense — December 30, 2013 @ 11:51 AM | Reply

  3. Hopefully, the majority of the rakyat will do something positive and beneficial to the country with a great awakening this coming new year!

    Comment by Sharpshooter — December 30, 2013 @ 8:20 AM | Reply

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