PUCHONG, 7 Jan: Independence obtained through cooperating with colonisers is the reason why the British has the opportunity to continue some of the interests and economic benefits which they enjoyed when they were still colonising.
The British also has the opportunity to pursue institutional and political policies which were implemented when governing their colonies.
The former Deputy President of Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR), Professor Dr Syed Husin Ali, said that this is done by placing terms and conditions on negotiations between colonists and the colonised before the decision to grant independence is done.
“One example is the educational institution, in addition to the judicial institution or local and foreign policies.
“In Malaya, most of the profits are earned by aristocrats, capitalists and former officials, most of whom have close relationships with colonists. They are also seen as being influenced by the colonial education system and are often considered heroes in history,” he said.
He said this when delivering a lecture at the People’s Independence Course which was held at the Centre for Democracy Reforms and Social Initiatives recently.
Syed Husin said that the approach to achieve independence is different with the struggle for independence in India, which was obtained through passive resistance and less bloodshed.
He said that the people of India who wanted comprehensive independence decided to refuse to cooperate in all aspects with colonists and they managed to gain independence without continuing policies that continues to safeguard political interests as well as economic gains of colonists.
“Opponents of colonists in Indonesia also fought for independence through other ways compared to Malaya; by taking up arms against the colonial Dutch, thus involving bloodshed.
“India and Indonesia can control the country’s wealth and implement policies that are deemed to benefit the country and their people. This is in contrast to Malaya, which is bound to continue to protect interests in economy, politics and policies that profit the former British colonisers.
“This should not happen when the greed of some leaders in early years of independence in a country results in the distribution of wealth not being fully implemented.