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Study On The Formation Of Malaysia History Essay

Info: 3000 words (12 pages) Essay
Published: 1st Jan 2015 in History

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The formation of Malaysia is on 16 September 1963. Tunku Abdul Rahman proposed the formation of Malaysia with British colonies Singapore, Sabah, Sarawak and Brunei. Initially all the four colonies agreed to join the federation. However, the proposal was opposed by the Philippines as they asserted a claim over Sabah. The proposal also received opposition from Indonesia where it was viewed as a neo-colonialist plot by Sukarno and the powerful Indonesian Communist Party.

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Sometime in 1955, and later in 1959, Singapore had suggested that it be merged with Malaya. This proposal, however, was rejected by Malaya. At the time, Singapore’s population comprised mainly Chinese and Malaya feared that this would affect its racial composition, which was predominantly Malay. There was also the fear that the Communists, whose activities were still rampant in Singapore, might influence Malaya and impede its struggle to be rid of the threat of Communism.

Four years after Malaya’s independence, however, Malayan Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman took the region by surprise on 27th May 1961, when he made a speech stating his proposal to merge Malaya, Singapore and the Borneo territories of Sabah, Sarawak and Brunei. His sudden change of mind was influenced by the state of politics and economy in Singapore and the other territories.

The proposal also had an immediate effect of accelerating constitutional development in Sarawak, Sabah and Brunei. Elections were held for the first time in Brunei and in Sabah in 1962.

However, continued Philippine and Indonesian opposition led to the sending of a United Nations mission to Borneo in 1963, which also reported that the public opinion was in favoured of joining Malaysia. Brunei then pulled out due to an armed revolt staged to oppose its entry to Malaysia. Singapore was part of the newly formed Malaysia in 1963 but withdrew in 1965.


What are the factors that affect the formation of Malaysia? The factors leading to the proposal of a Merger, is one of the reasons Tunku Abdul Rahman was keen on a merger with Singapore was for economic purposes. Singapore had a large number of industrial firms and a large population, which complemented its position as one of the more important trading ports in this region. Tunku Abdul Rahman was also seeking to liberate these colonies from colonization. Malaya had already achieved its independence four years earlier. While Singapore practiced to a large extent, a self-governing policy, Sabah and Sarawak were still very much under British control.

In Brunei, the Sultan maintained his autocratic powers but was compelled to receive advises from a British Resident. Tunku Abdul Rahman felt that a merger of these colonies with Malaya would speed up independence from the British.

Another factor was the stronghold of Communism over Singapore. As time passed, their activities did not cease. Singapore was then led by Lee Kuan Yew, who, frustrated with the constant disputes and strikes in the mid-1950s, decided to woo some of the Communists into his government, hoping to find favour with them and eventually soften their blows. However, the Communists were adamant about continuing their activities and eventually formed their own party, known as the Barisan Socialis, after they were forced to resign from the government.

Fearing that Malaya would be in grave danger should the Communists decide to support their allies in Malaya from across the straits, Tunku Abdul Rahman felt that a merger with Singapore would make it easier to deal with the Communists.

Apart from Singapore, Communism was also thriving in Sarawak, where the communists formed an underground association, which exerted its influence on workers’ associations, students and farmers. There also existed cultural similarities between these territories. Singapore comprised a large Chinese population, while Malaya had a mixed array of Malays, Chinese and Indians. The initial fears expressed by some UMNO members about the Malays being outnumbered by the Chinese, were dispelled when they were convinced that ethnic balance would be restored once the Borneo Territories, which comprised most Malays and indigenous groups, merged with Malaya.

The factors that affect the formation of Malaysia are also avoids the threats and communist influence by other territories. More and more, the independence of Sabah, Sarawak, Brunei and Singapore also need to cover up. The defense of indigenous communities and the safeguard the interest of indigenous rights in Sabah and Sarawak are very important for Tunku Abdul Rahman to take care and concern about it.

Who is giving the issues the formation of Malaysia? That is Sabah, Sarawak, Brunei and Singapore. Their response are very important when formation of Malaysia. And also the process of formation of Malaysia is important too. The process is Malaysia solidarity committee, Cobbold Commission, inter-governmental committee, and Singapore referendum.

Sabah is giving the issue about the party pro-anti Malaysia, Sarawak is giving the issue about there are no economic different, Brunei is giving the issue about believe that they can independence by their own, no need depend with others, while Singapore is giving the issue about the party people of Singapore.

The chairman of Malaysia solidarity consultative committee is Tun Haji Mohammad Fuad Stephens, previously known as, Donald Stephens. He played a key role in negotiating the independence of Sabah. He collects the data from the citizen to form the formation of Malaysia. Malaysia Solidarity Consultative Committee (MSCC) to inform the people of the benefits of the merger.

The chairman of Cobbold Commission is Lord Cobbold. He is going to Sabah and Sarawak to collect the data from the citizen when formation of Malaysia. He is going to investigate the reaction of the people in Sabah and Sarawak towards the merger. Two months later, after receiving thousands of letters, conducting thousands of interviews with the people of Sabah and Sarawak and countless public meetings, a conclusion was reached. Only one third of the population rejected the merger, hoping to join Malaya only after they achieved their independence. The other two thirds either supported the merger wholeheartedly or supported it on the grounds that their rights be maintained. Since the merger won the favour of the majority, it was approved by the British.

The chairman of Inter-governmental committee is Lord Landsdowne and Tun Abdul Rayak. The function of inter-governmental committee is forming a Federation of Malaya. It is concentrated on Islam, Malay, education and integration.

Singapore still retained its initial interest in Malaya and was therefore, eager to merge with Malaya when Tunku Abdul Rahman made the proposal in 1961. His efforts paid off and a referendum held on 1 September 1962 indicated that 71.1% of the population of Singapore supported the merger. Singapore was promised autonomy in education, revenue and labour while the central government would be operating in Kuala Lumpur. Its free entreport status would also be maintained.

Like Singapore, Brunei was equally keen on the merger, since its ruler, Sultan Ali Saifuddin was hoping to gain protection from a larger country like Malaya. A.M. Azahari, the leader of the opposition party, Party Rakyat, however, strongly opposed the merger and led a revolt against the government of Brunei, in which he was defeated. Azahari had an ulterior motive – to merge all the North Borneo territories and place them under the reins of Brunei.

When Malaysia was formed, Indonesia and the Philippines disapproved of the new establishment due to their own ulterior motives. The Philippines claimed ownership of Sabah, stating that Sabah came under the Sulu Sultanate which belonged to the Philippines. As such, the Philippines did not acknowledge Malaysia as an independent country or the official declaration that took place on16th September 1963.


Nevertheless, North Borneo and Singapore declared sovereignty on August 31, 1963. Indonesian’s opposition later escalated to a military conflict with Malaysia. Indonesia considered Malaysia as a new form of colonization on the provinces of Sarawak and Sabah in the island of Borneo (bordering Kalimantan, Indonesia), which they laid claim on.

To assure Indonesia that Malaysia was not a form of neo-colonialism, a referendum, organized by the United Nations and the Cobbold Commission, led by Lord Cobbold, was formulated to determine whether the people of Sabah and Sarawak wished to join Malaysia. Their eventual findings which indicated substantial support for Malaysia among the people of Sabah and Sarawak, paved the way for the final proclamation of Malaysia.

The formation of the Federation of Malaysia was then announced on September 16, 1963 as Malaysia Day. The Independence Day celebration is still held on August 31, the original independence date of Malaya.

Malaysia has now been enjoying independence for 53 years and is known to the world as a sovereign country. We are able to achieve economic, political and social stability and move rapidly towards a developed country. Although Malaysia is a plural society that consists of various races, they are able to live, co-operate and co-exist in harmony to build a strong and developed country. The understanding among the races, which creates unity in the country, plays a very important role in moulding Malaysia to be a politically stable country.



New Economic Policy (NEP) is a socio-economic program in the Malaysia which was introduced in 1971 by Prime Minister Tun Abdul Razak, Dato ‘Hussein. Implementation of divide and rule policy will turn the British in the Malay community cohesion. The British were encouraging the arrival of labor from China and India in the interest of the colonial economy of tin mining, trading and farming. Separation of Singapore from Malaysia in 1965 due to the concept of “Malaysia to the Philippines” which was not directly dispute the status and privileges of the Malays has diapi-naming of Lee Kuan Yew fueled anti-Chinese and anti-Malay.

Bloody events that occurred on May 13, 1969 have revealed the true manifestation of the feelings of the three largest ethnic groups in Malaysia. Bloody events also forcing the government to declare a state of emergency. This declaration has led to a parliamentary system of government is suspended. Since the Japanese occupation during the Second World War, Japan adopted a policy of anti-Chinese and pro-Malay bias has angered the Chinese and the Malays. National Consultative Council was established to ensure the effectiveness of the NOC, the National Consultative Council which is responsible for discussing and reviewing issues of national unity and resolve to find a way multi-ethnic society.

Unity to be achieved not only involve the consolidation race but was found to be economic and social unification should be done. In connection with the National Consultative Council have agreed to form a national ideology that became known as the Pillars of the five key principles:

Kepercayaan kepada Tuhan

Kesetiaan kepada Raja dan Negara

Keluhuran Perlembagaan

Kedaulatan Undang-Undang

Kesopanan dan Kesusilaan

New Economic Policy was established through the Majlis Perundingan Negara as a catalyst to eradicate poverty and restructure society. Majlis Perundingan Negara also recommended the government to create the Jabatan Perpaduan Negara to implement the activities of the Muhibah in the form of Muhibah and Pejabat Muhibah at the federal, state, region and area has been established under the provisions of the Essential Regulations (Pejabat Muhibah) 1969 which was gazetted on July 18, 1969.


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2.1.1 ANSWER

The objective of NEP was national unity but it also aims to restructure the socio-economic imbalance that exists in this country. As we know that a balanced distribution of economic importance in creating a united nation, as well as taking into account the poverty and the inability of some people to compete with other people then the NEP was designed to improve the situation.

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The primary objective of this introduction is to create national unity by reducing the economic, social, cultural, placement and so forth. In other words, DEB aims to eradicate general poverty among all of the races in the country particularly among the Malays and other Bumiputras, which happen to be the majority, and the earliest to settle in the country. DEB will ensure that all races particularly the Malays and Indians will be equally prosperous as the Chinese. Our leaders at those times and until today believe that when all races are equally prosperous the country will enjoy stability, peace and harmony.

With equal share of prosperity all, the three major races in Malaysia will be happy and contented; this will contribute greatly in maintaining peace, and harmony in the country. With the New Economic Policy, the government wants to ensure that the incidents of racial riots of 13 May 1969 will never happen again in the future.


The tension between those who are wealthy and not wealthy is a result of poverty. It was found that the Malays are facing more poverty than other races. Found also the Malays are still lagging behind and less able to compete with other races even though Malaysia had good economic growth. The NEP was designed as a long-term program that will run for 20 years, starting from 1970 to 1990. Development plans under the New Economic Policy is carried out through a two-pronged strategy:

restructuring of society to reduce and eventually eliminate the identification of race with economic function.

eradication of poverty irrespective of race

2.2.1 ANSWER

Goals of poverty eradication is achieved, the strategy focused on eliminating poverty in rural and urban areas. Based on 1970 population census shows that about 49.3% of all poor families in the Philippines income below the poverty line (income poverty line 1970 population is RM200.00) and about 86% of that number are in rural areas.

To achieve this objective, the government has implemented a variety of services and facilities through the provision of education, health, water and electricity. In addition, preference is given to the poor to get help, such as fertilizer subsidy assistance program, educational scholarships and textbooks, supplementary food to children and low-cost housing program.

Create employment opportunities for all groups of people who are unemployed. To provide opportunities for transfer of persons working in low productivity sectors to more lucrative sectors. Increase the productivity and income. Reducing the income gap between races between urban and rural areas and between regions and also modernize rural life. Need to establish indigenous groups and commercial companies. Organize a working environment that reflects the racial composition in Malaysia.æœ-读

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Toward the end date of the NEP, the objectives to eradicate poverty have been achieved.

To ensure that both goals were achieved in the NEP, the government has tried to improve the economic situation and at the same time, eliminating the identification of race with economic function. Based on the imbalance between the races, the government has launched several programs such as industry and trade, agriculture, mining, construction, transport and agriculture. To achieve the second goal of the NEP, various strategies have been designed, including:

Reducing the imbalance in the structure of employment to the participation of various races in the primary sector will reflect the position of the labor force by 1990 the racial composition.

Adding to the fast part of the people of Pakistan in possession of the productive sector. Special attention will be focused on indigenous people are a bit behind compared to other races.

Raising productivity and living standards of poor people in rural areas.

To ensure the establishment of a commercial and industrial community among the Malays and natives as they manage and own at least 30% of all levels of economic activity such as MARA, Bank Pembangunan, Bank Bumiputera, Amanah Saham Nasional.

Advancing the state and region that are considered backward by the new regional development such as DARA, KESEDAR, KEJORA and so on.


As a conclusion, New Economic Policy, aimed at national unity through poverty eradication and restructuring of society in the context of a strong national security. All national development programs and policies introduced by the government during planned and implemented to achieve the above objectives. This will require not only the determined efforts of the government and its employees, but it requires a change of attitude, energy and mindset of people from the private sector.

Although the NEP was hailed in some quarters as having reduced the socioeconomic disparity between the Chinese minority and Malay majority, others accused it of having reduced non-Malays to the status of second-class citizens by cementing ketuanan Melayu (Malay supremacy). The NEP is often invoked as part of the Malay Agenda, which is in turn part of the Malaysian social contract granting Malays special rights in return for citizenship for non-Malays.


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