Kuala Lumpur: Curtailing corruption and money politics in Umno will be a difficult task even with Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak becoming the Prime Minister and Umno President in March, said Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
"Will the power transition (from Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to Najib) restore the party? I am not yet convinced as I have yet to see whether Najib is able to solve corruption and money politics.
"We will not regain the 'clean' Umno of yesteryears to represent us unless money politics is curbed," said Dr Mahathir at a discourse entitled the "Malay Dilemma" organised by the Federation of Malaysian National Writers' Associations (Gapena), Saturday.
The former Prime Minister said the scourge had become a culture in Umno and had become more pronounced in the run-up to the party's polls (in March). Dr Mahathir said if Umno did not return to the roots of its struggle, itwould no longer be relevant to the Malays.
"The leaders must lead by example by taking stern action against those involved in corruption. Do not vote for leaders who are involved in corruption," he said.
When asked if he had referred any names to Umno's disciplinary board for indulging in money politics, said he had not done so as many had lodged reports for the same with the board.
He said what was important was that action be taken on the complaints. On Wanita Umno chief Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz's decision to defend her post, he said, "It is up to her. What is important is that Umno members should choose their leaders wisely."
Meanwhile, Dr Mahathir also said the teaching of science and mathematics in English should be continued to ensure Malaysian students, especially the Malays, are not left behind.
He said the change to teach the two subjects in English from Bahasa Malaysia was to ensure students could master them and at the same time become more proficient in English, the number one language in the world.
"It is not aimed at neglecting Bahasa Malaysia. Furthermore, most publications on science and mathematics are in English.
"Take for example the cellular phone. If foreigners manufacture them equipped with cameras and the short-messaging facility but the manual is in English, can we used our science which is in Bahasa Malaysia to make the same hand phone?
"By the time we are done with the translation we will be left far behind," he said. He also cited the dark ages of the Arabs where they had to learn everything from the Greeks.
"Obviously they could not ask the Greeks to translate their knowledge into Arabic. The solution then was for them to learn Greek so that they could have access to the knowledge in their possession. By doing this, the Arabs became a progressive race," he said, adding that the same applied in the current scenario in the country.
He also said being proficient in two languages was a great asset and cited himself as an example.
"I studied in a Malay school for two years before my father transferred me to an English school. Thereafter all my education was in English.
"Did I lose my ability to use Bahasa Malaysia? It will not signify the end of the Malay race if we are to learn in English as well," he said.
Hello boss...itu semua bermula dizaman Tun lagilah,sedangkan Tun sendiri tidak boleh ubah, inikan pula selepas 20 tahun lebih. Bila agaknya senarai nama pengamal politik wang itu hendak dikeluarkan...cepatlah sikit, nanti kalau dah habis persidangan..bangsai sudah tu!! Nama mukhriz adakah...???
Bukankah penggunaan bahasa inggeris disekolah-sekolah Tun yang ubah ke Bahasa Malaysia semasa Tun jadi menteri penerangan (ralat..Menteri Pelajaran)dulu..kenapa nak sibuk bila orang tak pandai cakap omputih ni?? Kan bagus kalau Tun sahaja yang boleh cakap omputih, yang lain tu angguk2 sahaja...!! Tak usahlah nak cakap putar alam...kalau bukan Tun yang bijaksana ini, yang pandai-pandai tukar bahasa pengantar disekolah-sekolah dahulu dari bahasa inggeris ke bahasa malaysia, mungkin sekarang ini, kita tidaklah terkial-kial lidah nak sebut ayat-ayat dalam buku subjek sains dan matematik..nak mengajar anakpun mungkin kita tidak akan selalu tergelincir sebut `five' jadi paip dll.
Tun Dr.Mahathir...'It will not signify the end of the Malay race if we are to learn in English as well'.. ada yang makan selipar jipun ni karang..tengok ahh!!
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