Monday, August 03, 2009

Our young embracing corruption as a way of life?

Is corruption dragging us down?

This news by Bernama datedlined 30th July 2009 should be worrying us.

It is reported that a survey carried out by Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia (UKM) showed that students have no qualms about accepting and giving bribes. The survey showed :-

  1. 30.5 % of the respondents were willing to accept bribes if they have the power and the opportunity;
  2. 15 % of the respondents were willing to offer bribes to facilitate business deals;
  3. 23.7 % of the respondents were willing to offer bribes to prevent actions against them.

To be fair, the sample size and the students background was not mentioned. So, if there is any interested party out there who wants to know more, you may want to check the report with UKM.

If this is the trend of our future leaders, it is not a healthy sign. Instead it is a sign of a sick society and supported the 2007 observations of Hong Kong-based Political and Economic Risk Consultancy (PERC).

On 14th March 2007, STAR reported PERC's annual survey of 2006 placed Malaysia on number 7th spot out of 13 nations in terms of corruption, meaning that expatriates business executives rated Malaysia as bad as China with a score of 6.25 (10 being the worst). Back then, Philippines, Thailand and Indonesia are ranked to be more corrupted than Malaysia. Are we heading their way?

What I see from this news is that our university students aka future leaders :-

  1. did not see corruption as a crime;
  2. see corruption as an opportunity to be exploited to the max;
  3. relates power with corruption;
  4. views corruption as normal in business deals;
  5. will not hesitate to offer bribes to get off the hook;

As I see it, this trend need to be nickfrom the bud. Malaysian Institute of Integrity (IIM) must take the lead to educate the students on the perils of corruption. Social and moral values should be inducted into their thinking to build a preventive shield against corrupt practise.

However, this is easier said than done. Look around us and see who drive glamorous cars? Who owns the trendiest electronic gadgets? Who party through the nights? Then ask the next question - how do they maintain their lifestyle? Where does the money comes from?

Looking back further, see how much Malaysia has degenerate in terms of our corruption level. Way back in the 70's or the 80's, corruption is seen and treated as evil. Those caught practising corruption were publicly charged and there were no "political immunity" defending them. In many ways, government servants depended fully on their monthly wage to scrap through. Could you recall any young graduates or newly minted division A officers driving the benzs' or big continental cars in the 70s and the 80s'? All this perception change after mid 80's...when the "new malays" and "yuppies" hit the scene.

Now, try joining the "yuppies" and you will see the difference. Latest electronic gadgets, powerful cars are the craze with majority of them living in "uptowns", openly talking about "free lunches, dinners and commissions", courtesy of "Malaysia boleh". Everything comes with a price and nowadays they don't talk about descent salary anymore...For those who stick to their principle of honest living will be outcast and labelled as "ignorant or worse stupid" for failing to capitalise on the bountiful opportunities....

Maybe, it is not longer a big thing if a Terengganu assemblyman is nabbed by MACC for allegedly demanding 10 % commission from a Rm 1.5M project. Is that all our MACC is capable of investigating? What about bigger fish? Is this the reason why Malaysian is seen as a corrupt country?

It is time for the MACC to be directly under the King or under the parliament so that "political immunity" can be effectively eradicated. And it is time for MACC to have a new more dynamic commissioner who is clean and not a political stooge nor indebted to any political figure for his post. It is also time for our younger generation to be implanted with hatred towards corrupt practise.

Now, Malaysia is at number 7 out of 13 nations. Let's work on improving to be the least corrupted nation amongst the 13 and not working equally hard to be the most corrupted nation amongst the 13 nations across Asia. We still have the time...let's set the target...

Off tangent: SPR announced that they will meet on 5th August 2009 to discuss on the nomination and polling day for Permatang Pasir by-election. Apparently, the meeting has been carried forward from the initial set date of 10th August 2009.

Based on this new development, I foresee that the by election will be held before 1st Ramadan. By simple calculation, is it possible for the polling day to be set on 10th August 2009 and polling day set on 17th August 2009. That is my best bet for the moment. Hope it will come true and spare everyone the pains of campaigning during the fasting month.

Till then...G'nite M'sia...wherever u are...

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