Monday, August 26, 2019

Malaysia, stop with your old political tactics

Dec 07. 2018
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Re: “Malaysia to voice protest over S’pore landing system in Seletar”, AseanPlus, December 5

It is deplorable to see the Malaysian government resorting to old tactics in order to score political points with the electorate at the expense of neighbouring Singapore. 

Ever since Mahathir took over in May, he has been making things difficult for Singapore, including delaying the construction of high-speed railway connecting the two countries and restarting debate on the price of water. 

The idiosyncratic Mahathir has always borne a grudge against Singapore due to his experience as a student in the country and the historical enmity surrounding Singapore’s political expulsion from the Malaysian federation in August 1965. 

I am unsure what his agenda is this time to protest against airspace sovereignty in southern Johor, when it has been managed by Singapore since 1973 under an agreement with regional states including Malaysia. It was approved by the International Civil Aviation Organisation then. So what’s the reason now to mess with the status quo?

I hope Mahathir can stop such tactics and behave like an elder statesman. There are many other domestic problems for him to solve – like the massive debt incurred by the previous government – instead of politicking in the foreign policy arena. 

Sean 

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