The Aliran annual general meeting on 25 November unanimously passed a resolution calling for an end to the pejorative labelling of the ethnic minorities in Malaysia as “pendatang” (immigrants).
The full text of the resolution:
Resolution on ethnic labelling
We note with concern that:
- despite some ethnic minorities having been in this beloved country for many generations and even centuries;
- despite the conditional return to parliamentary democracy in February 1971 following the May 13 tragedy which stipulated that citizenship will not be a matter of dispute;
- despite members of ethnic minority groups having fulfilled all constitutional requirements and holding valid Malaysian citizenship;
we still have some insensitive, ignorant politicians who refer to them pejoratively as “pendatang”.
We take strong objection to these ethnic minorities being referred to as pendatang, when they are by definition of the Federal Constitution bona fide Malaysian citizens.
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We further note that several former prime ministers and political leaders of mixed heritage not only rose to high office but also contributed immensely to the nation; so, there is no reason for anyone to cast aspersions on the ethnic minorities in Malaysia.
This AGM therefore calls on the government of Anwar Ibrahim to take immediate action and call out any politician who refers to the ethnic-minorities as pendatang so as to safeguard our national unity and collective dignity and preserve the peace.
Proposer: P Ramakrishnan
Seconder: A Thanabalan