Peluncuran Buku Dr Syed Husin Ali

Semalam saya diberi penghormatan meluncur dan membedah buku The Malays: Their Problems and Future karya sarjana, tokoh politik dan pejuang rakyat Dr. Syed Husin Ali (SHA).

Sambutan hebat sekali dari pelbagai kalangan – MB Selangor Tan Sri Khalid, Azmin Ali, Manickavasagam, Sasterawan Negara A Samad Said dan pelukis Syed Ahmad Jamal, puluhan bekas tahanan politik termasuk Said Zahari dan C C Yong.

Saya mulai dengan gurindam, nukilan dari karangan Almarhum Pendeta Zaaba menggambarkan suasana sang penulis di penjara.

Maka beredarlah kalam yang rucing di atas kertas oleh setitik dakwat yang kelabu.
Pada ketika malam masih gelap dan udara pelajaran dan pengetahuan di antara kaum Melayu masih mengerang dengan kesempitan!

Penerbit The Other Press, Koyakutty memulakan acara dan diikuti tokoh politik veteram Rajakumar mengupas singkat buku tersebut.

SHA menghimbau pengalaman lampau, terutama selaku mangsa tahanan politik, dihina dan didera. Saya tersentuh dan sedih mendengar luahan derita beliau. SHA merumus dengan menekankan tesis beliau mengenai “kepedulian rakyat” – bagi menyelamatkan Melayu dan rakyat Malaysia umumnya.

In his preface to the first edition (1978), Syed Husin Ali (SHA) said “The Malay people are now at an important crossroad(s)”. And may I venture to add that the Malays are now at a defining moment of their history!

SHA represents “the other”, and not the dominant political mode in Malaysia. His ideas were marginalized and remain subaltern to use Edward Said’s description. But he was adamant and persisted.

The book is not an academic treatise but written with a conscience and a passion.

The neofeudal syndrome has become a means of patronage and control. The Malays need a renewed surge of confidence to explode the myth of dependency, the insecurity and paralysis, dispensing inferiority complex perpetrated by the colonial masters and their surrogates.

We must disenthrall ourselves from this myth and fetters. The Malays and Bumiputras require opportunities and space so that genuine Malay talent and creativity can flourish. And finally it is about justice for all Malaysians.

ANWAR IBRAHIM

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