‘FOR THE MALAYS, THE TRUTH IS WHAT THEY CAN OBTAIN – EVEN FOR A FEW RINGGIT’: NATIONAL LAUREATE PAK SAMAD WORRIED ABOUT ATTITUDE OF HIS OWN RACE

NATIONAL laureate A. Samad Said today voiced his disappointment with the Malays who “don’t see the truth as the truth”, adding that this attitude of his race is worrying him.

The 83-year-old novellist, poet and DAP member said he is not worried about the Chinese and Indians who can spot what is false and what is true quickly, but it was not the same with the Malays.

“I don’t worry about the Chinese and Indians. They can tell what is good and bad, and true and false, quickly.

“But with the Malays, I am very concerned. The Malays don’t see truth as the truth. They look at truth as what they can obtain.

“Don’t let a few ringgit cause us to forget what was taken from our own pockets. We should not just remember what is given and forget what was taken from us.

“That has been our mistake. This attitude is difficult to fix. If we don’t wake up from it, we will go nowhere and will become slaves to (other) Malays,” he said in his speech at the Penang DAP Hari Raya open house in Nibong Tebal yesterday.

Samad’s remarks come at a time when the details surrounding the 1Malaysia Development Bhd (1MDB) scadal and the civil suits filed by the US Department of Justice (DoJ) to seize assets purchased by money allegedly stolen from the state investor, hog the headlines again.

Umno and PAS leaders have been quick to dismiss the scandal, arguing that Malaysian authorities have found no wrongdoing. They also denounced the DoJ suits, claiming that it was an attempt at “interfering” into Malaysia’s affairs.

The latest civil suit by the DoJ is to seize assets worth US$540 million (RM2.3 billion) believed to have been bought with money siphoned from 1MDB.

The opposition, however, has argued that it was the Malaysian taxpayer who will have to bear the cost of this scandal.

Samad, fondly known as Pak Samad, then pointed to the opposition-controlled Selangor and Penang governments.

“If people accessed the two administrations, they would see that the Pakatan Harapan governments had been taking care of the people’s welfare,” he said.

“There are no deficits recorded in these states. They spend according to their means and give back to the people.

“I think this is hardly noticed by the Malays. We trust leaders who we should not trust, and we are attracted to money that is actually stolen.”

He also said that while it is true that DAP is a Chinese-based party, more Malays are accepting the party, adding that the party is trying to make Malaysia better for all.

“In the past it was seen as a chauvinistic Chinese party that cannot get Malay support. But things are changing,” Pak Samad said.

He also expressed his disappointment that Malay leaders still resorted to racism whenever they became desperate.

“We should be past that by now, 60 years after independence,” he said.

THE MALAYSIAN INSIGHT

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