Malaysia is a country in South-East Asia, mostly known for its multiculturality and multi religions – this and couple more sentences you can find when googling word Malaysia. But how it is in reality? What problems in everyday life encounter its inhabitants? Answers to that and couple more questions we will try to answer in our interview with our friends – 21-year-old Eric who lives on Borneo Island and 26-year-old Mashoor from Yemen who currently lives and study in Kuala Lumpur.
- Malaysia is well known as a multicultural and multi-religion country where all its inhabitants live in peace and cooperation, but is it really like that?
E. It is true. Malaysia is a multicultural society which the population made up by several types of ethnic groups include Malay, Chinese, Indian (Major) and Native. Each ethnic group has their own history culture, value, history, language and also the belief system.
M. Yes, it’s true, Malaysia is a multicultural society, with Malays, Chinese and Indians living side by side, under the concept of (1Malaysia). The Malaysians are the largest group, They are 50% of the population. And the second largest group, the Malaysian Chinese form about 25% of the population. Then the smallest of three main groups are the Malaysian Indians who form about 10% of the population.
- I have heard that Malaysian law is very strict, why is that?
E. It is because of the political benefits and also for the sake of country safety. For example Drug Law, Malaysia is significantly stricter than USA, drug trafficking in Malaysia is punishable by death.
M. Malaysia has some incredibly strict laws. Drug laws in Malaysia are very strict. Anyone possessing any controlled substances may be levied a heavy fine, kicked out of the country immediately or imprisoned. And what I see that they just make the rules so strict just for showing off, but the fact is not and this is really bad and I hope it will change for better.
- Malaysia is a country where Islam is a state religion and is that the same as in Arabic countries?
E. Generally speaking, Malaysia is not an Islamic country because there is no law or constitution stating that Malaysia is one, even the Muslim population is high. Despite that, in Sarawak (East Malaysia) they allow Muslims to change their religion (it’s forbidden in West Malaysia). In Malaysia, we also have some of the religious political parties which are very radical as in Arabic countries.
M. Islam is the same everywhere. Muslims in Malaysia read the same Quran, pray five times a day, Fasting in Ramadan and celebrating Eid holidays as Muslims in Arab countries. Also we can see in Malaysia the design of the beautiful mosques are amazing and we can see that people in the cities are more open minded than the people who live outside the city because of the multicultural and the modern lifestyle, and if you would go and see the Malaysian Muslims in the villages you could see that they are practicing Islam much better than the people who lives in the cities.
- In Kuala Lumpur we can find a lot of modern skyscrapers and expensive shops, is it affordable for the average Malaysian family?
E. Most of the household are able to afford it but due to an increase of cost of living every year (political and economy issue), most of them choose to spend wisely and do budget planning wisely.
M. It’s not affordable just for Malaysian, they mostly do it to attract foreigners and the average Malaysian salary is much better than other countries in Asia so you will see people from different countries of Asia working in Malaysia because of the good income.
- Could you please share with us one thing you find interesting about your country.
E. The largest cave chamber in the world in the world is Sarawak Chamber in Gunung Mulu National Park. Sabah is home to the Rafflesia, the largest flower in the world.
M. Malaysia is one of the top 10 countries in the world, Most visited per year a lot of beautiful islands, sightseeing, museums and nice people … and it’s a good place to enjoy with families, group of people or even for couples to have fun and relax at the same time.
6.What do you think about the death penalty in Malaysia?
E. First of all, I’m against of it. In my opinion, the death penalty is inhumane. For some reason, death penalty may have a risk of executing innocent people. I prefer isolation in an underground cell away from humans for the rest of the murderer life. But on the other hand, the death penalty can be reserved for people who commit the most heinous crimes (mass murder).
M. In my opinion, I feel the life sentence is better than the death penalty is because the person who commits a crime should suffer and regret their whole life on what they have done. Unlikely death penalty it is a fearful punishment but not as heavy as death penalty because it takes a few seconds to close the perpetrator life chapter but life sentence teaches them about life values throughout their time spent in prison and at the same time regretting and realizing that they have wasted their lifetime. Judges and court should decide the right to punish whoever convicted crime.
7. I have heard that in there are restrictions inMalaysian law and just Malay people are able to work in the government and there are also limits for foreign people to access the Universities, why in such a multicultural country these things happen?
M. Well, it is because it all have started with Malay people since the Independence Day of Malaysia where only Malay Muslims were allowed to be the prime minister of this country. That shows how politics made the nations to be a stereotype about other races than Malay. For example, mostly Malays are allowed or eligible to enter government universities or government firms because it is called their country but the other races are still arguing and trying to improve the mindset and stability of this country. Hence the bribe issue also became worst in this country also because of politicians influence. These restrictions still exist due to the lack of knowledge of this country’s history and development of Malaysia and also older generations should teach the younger ones to think and study the real truth how this country developed from nothing to a developing country without assuming that Malay did everything for this country. Racism is something that needs to be demolished in order to make the slogan of “1MALAYSIA” for real.