The Bitter Insult
When the results of the Reserved Presidential Election are announced in the weeks to come, Singapore Malay Community would have been insulted Multiple Folds…
1) That Malays would stand no chance of being elected in an open contest in this land of Singapura
2) That Malays are no where near the league of qualifying for the Presidential Candidacy criteria apart from the passage of political office… Such that meticulous engineering spanning years may even be needed to ensure the minimum stint in office is achieved.
3) That on all other official matters such as the Census, HDB flat application Ethnic Integration Clause, Primary School Application, NRIC registration, Malay Tertiary Tuition Fee Subsidy, etc… The patrelineal CMIO model is applied strictly… But in the political arena especially this Reserved Presidential Election, the highest official public office… The patrilineal CMIO model is waived thus allowing cultural affinity and acceptance or the kampung way of determining whether someone is ‘orang kita’ or ‘pendatang’.
4) That members of the Malay community are longing to be given the chance to have a Malay President after so very long… After Yusoff Ishak… such that seeing his face on the Singapore Yusoff Ishak series notes is not enough… Such that having ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute, a premier research institution named after him is not enough, such that having a Yusoff Ishak mosque – a community center symbolic for doing good, piety and humility without desire for earthly rewards… Is NOT enough… Such that to appease a deep unawaken unrest that is threading in the hearts and minds of Malay Singaporeans, a decision of surgical precision has to be made a short few months prior to the departure of President Tan from office that Singapore Must have a ‘Malay President’… One that has an image appealling and representative to the pious modern Malay Muslim women and men.
5) That the Malay community is very supportive of this ‘affirmative action’ although it was not a request.
However, the most bitter insult will be when the portraits of the Reservedly Elected President and spouse are the only Malay faces to be seen in public institutions, institutions that stand on National platform for national interest and not simply an institution of private ethnic community interest that have been deemed unsuitable for Malays such as some Military Units and all Special Assistance Plan (SAP) schools… Such that regardless a Malay is smart enough, is fit enough, is capable enough and is supported enough… the faces of the Reservedly Elected President will be the only Malay faces gazing over the activities in those highly funded, highly resourced institutions of elite development.
This to me is an insult, the most bitter insult to the face of smart, capable and quaified Malay students and youth past, present and future… Where by virtue of race, they can only have potraits of the Reservedly Elected Malay Presidential couple hanging silently as representatives of the whole communities in such institutions.
But Malays known for being peaceful, forgiving and always optimistic for the ‘hikmah’ that is not easily comprehended to show itself.
Thus perhaps a prayer is appropriate that given the chance to choose, we are guided with making a the right option that will soften the blow of the many insults that we are about to receive…
May the Reservedly Elected President be someone of humble from a humble background so that we can teach our children that humility has its rewards;
May the Reservedly Elected President be someone that is determined and have persevered through struggles of success and failures so that we may teach our students not to expect favours and shortcuts to earn your worth as a contributing member of society;
May the Reservedly Elected President be someone that is a credible leader that not only holds titles and appointment but have demonstrated capacity to make, rational, weighted and wise decisions where it matters such that the followers are motivated and secure in good times and in situations of economic turmoil and crisis, so that we teach our children what it means to walk the talk and leading by example;
May Reservedly Elected President be someone who is charitable yet not a celebrity of charity who yearns millions of Pahala or its equivalence, someone known to have given generous donations and have pledged to give much more so that we can teach our children that to care for those who are not as fortunate is a responsibility for social good but not personal gain… It is one of the tenets of piety such that if right hand were to give, the left hand doesn’t know;
May the Reservedly Elected President be one that is sincere. Yet we can gauge sincerity impossible so perhaps as a proxy to sincerity, May the Reservedly Elected Malay President be someone who is self sufficient without the need to receive and rely on lucrative annual salary from public funds and if given, would return it back to the public especially those who need that extra help, so that we can teach our children, our parents, our siblings, our friends, our relatives, our neighbours, our community members, our fellow Singaporeans that fair remuneration fuels the quest to serve… Excessive remuneration fuels greed and it is possible to serve without milking dry public funds paid for by the people from the GS Tax, Income Tax, Property Tax, Fuel Tax, etc. Etc… Not forgetting the upcoming sugar tax.
May the Reservedly Elected Malay President be someone that will be a trustworthy person who will preside to ensure the well being of Singaporeans and growth of the nation, regardless of Race; as symbolic champion the abolition of unfair affirmative and preferential race policies, regardless of language; as a symbolic champion of honest communication guided by the language of hope, understanding and love, regardless of religion; as a symbolic champion to the free personal preference and choice of faith, believe systems and all its associated practices without denying rights to peaceful dialogue as long as principles of preserving human dignity is respected always… Such that despite being only a symbolic champion… will inspire the recovery of a Singaporean society that is harmonious and caring with a strong gotong royong and quanxi spirit that in the pirsuit of wealth, growth and excellence, No Singaporean… Be they friends, neighbours, family, schoolmate, colleagues, neighbourhood uncles, aunties, women, men, children… will ever slip and fall through the cracks due to greed and inconsiderate actions/inactions.
May the Reservedly Elected Malay President be someone who was not one with the system that contribute to the predicament we are in and the insults we are about to receive.
May the hikmah be clear upon us for the choice we are about to make and the future passage we are about to take.
Rafiz Mohyi Hapipi
Parent to 3 wonderful children
& A Malay
Source: Rafiz Hapipi