Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad
PM : 16 July 1981 – 31 October 2003
PM : 16 July 1981 – 31 October 2003
There has been a lot of talk lately about Mahathirism. Many have painted the picture of Mahathirism to be something like a Draconian philosophy and a climate of fear.
Being a 23 year old, I am in no position to justify what is right or wrong in Dr Mahathir's years against the thoughts of those who are elder than me.
However, I can assure you I make my evaluations based on academic readings of the Mahathir Administration.
I do not have the academic books of Dr Mahathir's years in my hands at this moment (they are all at home), but I will make full use of the Internet resources and my memory.
What I am about to present to you is the Mahathirism which people closed an eye and ignored.
Annual GDP Growth under Mahathirism (IMF Statistics)
GPD Per Capita (PPP) under Mahathirism (IMF Statistics)
DR MAHATHIR's Contributions
There is always a wrong perception that everything is done by Dr Mahathir.
I have to stress here that everything done at national level might be the brainchild of the Prime Ministers but these projects have been evaluated by various panels, agencies and Ministries before being implemented.
In reviewing Dr Mahathir's years, people have forgotten what Mahathirism brought to us.
1. Foreign Movement Participation
- Organization of Islamic Nations
- Non Aligned Movement
2. Malaysia The Way Forward
In 1991, in the midst of tabling the RMK 6, Tun Dr Mahathir presented the working paper of Vision 2020 officially in Parliament.
"Malaysia can be a united nation, with a confident Malaysian society, infused by strong moral and ethical values, living in a society that is democratic, liberal and tolerant, caring, economically just and equitable, progressive and prosperous, and in full possession of an economy that is competitive, dynamic, robust and resilient."
Read more HERE.
- Proton (1981)
- PLUS (1988 - 1994)
- KLIA (1990)
- Petronas Twin Towers (1992)
- Putrajaya (1995-2001)
- KL Tower (1995)
- MEASAT (M1 - 1996 , M3 - 2006)
- Astro (1996 - now)
- Multimedia Super Corridor (1996)
- Sepang International Circuit (1998)
- XVI Commonwealth Games 98 Kuala Lumpur (1998)
- STAR LRT Malaysia (1998)
- Putra LRT Malaysia (1999)
- Malaysian F1 Grand Prix (1999-now)
- Port Tanjung Pelepas (1999)
- KL Monorail Malaysia (2003)
4. Education (significant)
- Foreign universities campuses in Malaysia
5. Policies (significant)
- Buy British Last
- Look East Policy
- Rancangan Malaysia Kelima - Kelapan
- National Development Policy 1991
6. Economy & Finance (significant)
- Pegging of USD-RM exchange rate
- Merger of commercial banks into 10 anchor banks
- Privatisation of inefficient state-owned companies
- Strict Capital control in 1997
- Employees Provident Fund 1991
- The Dawn Raid - Guthrie Berhad at the London Stock Exchange
* EPF lifted Malaysians' savings level of those in the labor force. It also helped the Malaysian Government to reduce their dependency on foreign/external debt.
* The Dawn Raid was engineered by Tun Dr M and returned 200,000 acres of agricultural land to Malaysians. This "raid" caused panic in the London Stock Exchange and forced the "liberal" British Govt to implement stricter stock exchange rules.
A PIECE OF MY MIND
So what is really Mahathirism? Mahathirism in the eyes of a 23 year old brought a lot of changes to a "kampung" styled Malaysia.
The rapid development policies in industrial, telecommunications, manufacturing, engineering, and ICT have all the while been a boon rather than bane to us.
Malaysians today are all over the world. Be it individual experts or multinational Malaysian companies plying their trade across the globe, we carry our flag high and mighty.
Do not forget the contributions of our Malaysian leaders, no matter how much you value your own personal efforts or hardship.
Without the environment and specific policies, Malaysia today could have become a impoverished nation with civil wars and be seen as just another speck of dust in the eyes of the world.
It is highly unique to see why African nations deep in trouble politically and economically are not written and criticially evaluated by the Foreign press.
But we see many of our news in the foreign media - be it good or bad.
It irks me to read Hamish McDonald's article which heavily criticised Malaysia as a pariah nation and giving the clearest hint that he hates Najib & Mahathirism.
I wonder why Malaysia and Mahathir and not Indonesia or Thailand. What more to say about the Lee Dynasty in Singapore who limits the freedom of speech and political rights?
Malaysians today are global and on the map simply because of the man who led Malaysia for 22 years, Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
This is clear when students, academicians, leaders and business leaders globally in UK, Australia, Japan and other countries frequently welcome Dr M with open arms and trade thoughts or discussions with him.
I leave it for you to decide what Mahathirism is. You can be assured that this will not be the last Pro Mahathirism blog entry from A Piece of My Mind.
(Credits to Sabrina Shukri, UPI, BDDC, Daylife, Malaysiakini and Wikimedia for the photos)