Monday, February 18, 2013

Xenophobic Malaysia

Every year, we welcome thousands and thousands of nationals from neighboring countries (e.g. Bangladesh, Nepal, Myanmar, Indonesia, Philippines) who come here to work and as been proven in Sabah, we also give them citizenship so that they can become voters. But we too can be xenophobic as in the case of Australian Senator Nick Xenophon who was denied entry to and deported from Malaysia on Saturday. [Xenophon was part of a bipartisan delegation including other people from all sides of Aussie politics. They were scheduled to meet with Malaysian government reps as well as opposition reps].

Xenophon holds up his deportation notice as he arrives at Adelaide Airport after his deportation from Malaysia. Picture: Dean Martin

Daft Home Minister Hishammuddin Hussein insisted there was nothing political about this deportation decision and moreover, it was done according to the law. I don’t know which law he was referring to though. And it was definitely political.

Immigration Director-General Alias Ahmad had told The Malaysian Insider that Xenophon was barred entry under Section 8(3) of the Immigration Act as a “prohibited immigrant” because he called the Malaysian government “authoritarian” in handling the Bersih 3.0 rally for free and fair elections last April – he had then pointed out that tear gas and chemical-laced water were liberally launched at peaceful protestors. Alias smugly said, “He tarnished the image of the country”.

What is the government telling us? That people who say bad things about Malaysia will be stopped from entering the country? This tells you a lot about the Malaysian government. Some adjectives come to mind. Suspicious. Paranoid. Combative. And in the process, it is shooting itself in the foot. Again.

Shutting the door on Xenophon – who is from a country friendly to us – proves that he is right about the Malaysian government being “authoritarian”. What a flimsy pretext to use to give a person the boot. I tell you that this country has been transformed into a circus. Is this the transformation program that the prime minister boasted about? This absurd act of farcical foolishness is from a government that portrays itself as a democracy! This mischievous misstep is making us a complete laughing stock. If Najib Razak is not embarrassed, I am! Ooops, I forgot – he is shallow, superficial, simple-minded and yes, stupid. This explains why he is not embarrassed.

OMG! This may just set a precedent. The xenophobes in government may be getting ideas from this incident. What if the Election Commission decides that any Malaysian who speaks ill of the BN government will have his or her name struck off the electoral roll? Many of us will be disenfranchised! Then Najib will win GE13 hands down! He can continue to stay in Putrajaya and plunder the country unhindered. After all, this is a country where we have Malaysia Boleh!

What we have done to Xenophon is just downright rude! As a Malaysian, I would like to apologize for the idiotic arrogance of the BN-led government. Shame on Malaysia!

Xenophon’s expulsion was made against the backdrop of the standoff in Sabah where at least one hundred armed infiltrators – who claimed to be from the Sulu sultanate army – were treated with kid gloves by the Malaysian authorities. The incursion came to light only when Malaysian police announced on February 12 that they had encircled the gunmen who had encamped in Kampung Tanduo, Lahad Datu.

Even as I write, the Filipino intruders are still staying put on Malaysian soil and not budging. [If I am a Sabahan, I would feel violated!] Yet an Australian with proper entry documents was promptly expelled when he arrived in Malaysia! In case, we think this is an isolated incident, note that Thai pathologist Dr Pornthip Rojanasunand was barred from coming to Malaysia. Likewise, the French lawyers hired by Suaram.

Didn’t I say Malaysia is a circus?

1 comment:

Patrick said...

This incident reminded me of the time when The Economist was censored with black marker pens, some time ago. The act was so silly and dumbfounding, it defied all rational and senses.

But....Malaysia Boleh....!!!!!!

Noticed how even a retired senior servant in the form of TDM can have more media attention than the current sitting PM...!!!!

But.....Malaysia Boleh.....

GANGSTER that's a great movie to watch. Its rare to see Sean Penn in the lead role of a ruthless gangster. But his acting was superb and the movie was gripping from start to end. It is based on a true account of mafiadom-attempt in LA, but failed miserably based on the courageous actions of a few incorruptable, dedicated, focused, upstanding, law bidding, police officers....traits that are definitely lacking in PDRM....