I had the opportunity to have a “bergebang” session with our former Prime Minister’s protocol officer earlier, I didn’t even know who he was until I was about to leave. You know, learning through your experiences alone isn’t enough. How much can you experience pun in your short life time. You read, you tap from other people’s experiences, you get more. (Cik Hefleen, I will try to read more novels, OK? But never Sidney Sheldon, please dong!) I’m glad I decided to join En Hashim’s table for lunch last Monday, it was most enlightening.
We were on about NEP, the fact that the non-Bumiputera agreed to forego any special rights in exchange of citizenship, some articles in the constitution. But then we Malays don’t have that reading and writing culture, how are we to defend our rights when we have collective amnesia of the past.
Anyways, En Hashim related to me when he was younger, the former PM used to make his team give Tetamu Negara treatment to the President of Nauru, which is the world’s smallest independent republic. The President was a big fellow, when he asked for a message treatment, En Hashim send a police officer to get the best masseur in Kampung Baru. You know that sort of thing. Everyone criticised Dr M because most people thought it was a waste of the nation’s money. As he was relating the experience, I saw that Dr M was eyeing the money from Nauru’s phosphates. True enough, the President of Nauru was smitten with us, he diverted his investments from Australia to Malaysia. Patut laa Australia was so pissed off with us. There was more stories about Dr M’s PR work with South Africa, Cambodia, which had made Malaysia these countries’ first choice when it comes to doing business. How Dr M understood the theories of economics and challenged the popular thought when deciding to get Malaysia out of the 1997 downturn. The man has got vision.
I told En Hashim he should document these stories so that youngsters like me can learn from Dr M’s strategies. En Hashim kata they are Sulit matters. Haiyoh! Manyiak rugi wooo!!!! <- ala ala the psycho cat – Ah Beng.