It was not the British government that seized Malaya, but a private company, run by an unstable sociopath
People still talk about the British conquering Malaya, but that phrase disguises a more sinister reality. It was not the British government that seized Malaya at the end of the 18th century, but a dangerously unregulated private company headquartered in one small office, five windows wide, in London, and managed in India by an unstable sociopath – Clive.
The first corporate raid.
In 1511, Melaka was conquered by Portugal, after which it was taken by the Dutch in 1641. In 1786, the British Empire established a presence in Malaya, when the Sultan of Kedah leased Penang Island to the British East India Company. The British obtained the town of Singapore in 1819, and in 1824 took control of Melaka following the Anglo-Dutch Treaty. By 1826, the British directly controlled Penang, Melaka, Singapore, and the island of Labuan, which they established as the crown colony of the Straits Settlements. By the 20th century, the states of Pahang, Selangor, Perak, and Negeri Sembilan, known together as the Federated Malay States, had British residents appointed to advise the Malay rulers, to whom the rulers were bound to defer to by treaty. The remaining five states in the peninsula, known as the Unfederated Malay States, while not directly under British rule, also accepted British advisers around the turn of the 20th century. Development on the peninsula and Borneo were generally separate until the 19th century. Under British rule the immigration of Chinese and Indians to serve as labourers was encouraged. The area that is now Sabah came under British control as North Borneo when both the Sultan of Brunei and the Sultan of Sulu transferred their respective territorial rights of ownership, between 1877 and 1878. In 1842, Sarawak was ceded by the Sultan of Brunei to James Brooke, whose successors ruled as the White Rajahs over an independent kingdom until 1946, when it became a crown colony.
On 31 August 1957, Malaya became an independent member of the Commonwealth of Nations.
After this a plan was put in place to federate Malaya with the crown colonies of North Borneo (which joined as Sabah), Sarawak, and Singapore. The date of federation was planned to be 31 August 1963 so as to coincide with the anniversary of Malayan independence; however, federation was delayed until 16 September 1963 in order for a United Nations survey of support for federation in Sabah and Sarawak, called for by parties opposed to federation including Indonesia‘s Sukarno and the Sarawak United Peoples’ Party, to be completed – Wiki
Just like any sovereign state, Malaysia trotted on to progress and prosperity independently, with all the ups and downs for six decades under six prime ministers.
Currently, this relatively young nation is going through rough seas. The captain of the ship has (literally) lost his bearings, and the vessel is heading towards a iceberg, a collision of an enormous proportion, which will make the Titanic look pale in comparison.
Malaysia is in turmoil, politically and economically. The local currency Ringgit has dropped to a twelve year low and is in a free fall position. The political situation is in a state of disrepair as the ruling party UMNO under the leadership of prime minister Najib is losing popularity by the minute even as we speak.
Corruption is rampant in the government and UMNO, and it starts right from the highest echelon cascading down to the clerks in every ministry and department of the civil service. Many arrests have been conducted by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC)
Malaysia scored 49 points out of 100 on the 2016 Corruption Perceptions Index reported by Transparency International. Corruption Index in Malaysia averaged 49.73 Points from 1995 until 2016, reaching an all time high of 53.20 Points in 1996 and a record low of 43 Points in 2011.
The country’s reputation dived head down internationally as the infamous 1MDB scandals were blown out of the pandora’s box. Billions of dollars went ‘missing‘ into the pockets of rouges closely connected to the PM, while some RM2.6b were trailed into the PM’s personal account.
Najib will hope that a friendly figure in the White House will help his chances in the biggest kleptocracy case brought by the US justice department to date. It’s seeking $1 billion in assets that it says are tied to “public corruption and a global money laundering conspiracy.” – Quartz
The second corporate raid
Many mega projects have been interrupted or halted as these projects are in financial rout and seeking bail-outs or sourced out to foreign financiers. The biggest and main taker is China.
The Finance Ministry (MoF) has called off a deal to sell 60% of Bandar Malaysia – a mega property development project estimated to have a gross development value of RM160bil when completed in 20 years – has sent shockwaves through the country and the region – TheStarOnLine
Proton the first Malaysian car is up for sale and the Chinese automaker Geely is a promising buyer.
Even the Bilderberg Shell have sold their refinery in Port Dickson to a Chinese company Hengyuan International Ltd.
Chinese presence in the ailing Malaysian economy are seen as bailing out Najib’s misadventures and not as genuine investments.
Playing the domestic cards by opening its borders to China’s investment and development projects – many of which have shown traces of fatigue in the long run – Najib brought the Chinese government to understand that he needed them for his own political survival. – TheIndependent
Here are some national mega projects where the Chinese are literally and desperately begged to participate by Najib to restore his unpopularity, saving his neck and retain power all at the same time:
- Kuala Lumpur-Singapore high-speed rail (HSR)
$100 Billion Chinese-Made City
Iskandar Waterfront – CREC
- Bandar Malaysia TRX City
What comes with all these Chinese participations (interventions) and financing? One has to be too naive to think that its all purely business investments on the part of the Chinese and that Malaysia is just so good and fortunate to attract foreign investments, but silly enough to offer opportunities to foreigners, especially China as giveaways whilst herself missing the chance to reap fortunes from her own viable, profit making projects?
Desperate times call for desperate measures, even if it means selling one’s own mother to save one’s own neck. This is a more accurate observation by concerned Malaysians and that history is beginning to repeat itself is glaringly apparent.
The British East India Company came in a quite different time, scenario and circumstances as the corporate raid was done singularly and stealthily during a time and period the people were innocent simpletons, unsuspecting and unaware of what was going on until it was too late to do anything to stop the marauders… and the rest, as they say is history.
For a century, the East India Company conquered, subjugated and plundered vast tracts of south Asia. It was the original corporate raider. The lessons of its brutal reign have never been more relevant.
With that unforgettable episode of Malaya (then) in the back of the people’s heads, Malaysians are witnessing, with their eyes wide open this time history repeating itself.
Malaysians lowered the Union Jack on August 31, 1957 to regain their freedom, and sixty years later, will they be seeing the raising of another corporate flag – the Five Stars Red flag and be slaves all over again? One must remember, most of the big Chinese corporations are controlled and owned by the State. Only this time it will be a communist takeover instead of the capitalist fascists and oh, how paradoxical it has turned out, as the people of Malaya had fought so hard with their lives to rid off the communist terrorists (which were supported and backed by China), during the Emergency period.
What else will be sold to complete the corporate raid? Highways, water, power, utilities public transport and telecommunication services next? Will the people knowingly sit back and allow a second corporate raid this time around?