Is population imbalance a problem?

September 23rd, 2008 by poobalan | View blog reactions Leave a reply »
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That question had been in running in my mind for last two months. I remember reading in the newspaper where an MP (can’t recall who it was) said that something to the effect that we have to follow the majority. This is of course very much true. Currently in our country, the population can be categorised into four areas of importance – Race (Malays versus non-Malays), Religion (Muslims versus non-Muslims), Bumiputra Status (Bumi versus non-Bumi) and gender.

In terms of racial composition, we have many races (Malay, Chinese, Indian, etc) in this country, but the most critical one is Malays versus the rest. This ratio is important to maintain the national security and harmony, if we are to believe our politicians. The majority race is Malays, which is above 50% at the moment and rising steadily. The second largest group is the Chinese which is less than 30% and declining steadily. Same with the Indians which are at 7++% and declining as well. So, in the near future, we can expect the population to be imbalanced in terms of race with up to 70% Malays. With the inflow of Indonesians, the population of Malays are boosted through marriages.

In terms of religion, Islam being the religion for the majority race, automatically becomes the majority religion. Second in place is Christianity, followed by Buddhism, Hinduism and the rest. As the majority race experiences significant growth, we can expect the majority religion to also improve percentage-wise. Coupled with the capability of non-Muslims to be not aligned to any religion (in other words be a free thinker or atheist), we can expect the number of Muslims to significantly overwhelm the other religions in the near future.

In terms of Bumiputra composition, I remember reading a statement few months back that Bumiputra percentage is 62.1% while the non-Bumis are 30++%. Again, this tied closely to the majority race which are automatically accorded Bumiputra status. Then we have the ethnic races in Sabah and Sarawak who also Bumiputra. So, obviously the percentage of Bumiputra will be higher than the rest of the categorization.

Finally, population in terms of gender. So far, our population is nearly evenly balanced between male and female. However, the number of educated females are on the rise and it won’t be long before the white-collar workforce is overwhelmed with female workers. Due to the lack dwindling percentage in the above three categories, it is highly possible that marriages in the future will be inter-racial or inter-religion.

With more chances for the minority groups to convert to the majority – either via religious conversion or marriage (future generation can be of different race), the problem is compounded.

Now, where does this lead to? The possibilities are aplenty. A country that still sticks to its constitution and provides equality to all, or one that is in favor of the majority, and discriminative towards the minority.

Guided by the constitution, there will be protection for the minority races and religion. But with majority race in place, this can change if there’s consensus among them. As time goes, it may be economically unviable for example, to maintain many vernacular schools (EXAMPLE ONLY!). At that point of time, it is likely that a scheme like the NEP is created to ensure the minority races are not discriminated or deprived of opportunities.

Many areas will be affected in the next 20 – 30 years. Education, health care, places of worship, public service, tradition and culture, living neighborhoods, working environment, services industry, restaurants, our multiracial identity, public holidays, economic equity, gaming industry, etc.

I feel that with the way things are going, a imbalanced population will be more volatile and may even be a threat to national security. The voices of the minority can be easily drowned. Thus it may be the right time to implement a national population plan to boost the population of the minority races in order to preserve the status quo, or to implement population control (one child policy?) for the majority race (which is quite impossible due to religious factor).

Of course, things will be much, much easier if we don’t think along racial and religion lines. But that’s wishful thinking at the moment.

This is my thoughts, so I hope readers can share your opinions and thoughts as well.

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1 comment

  1. farmer says:

    Im ok if we control population growth for reason such as environment or health hazard.

    But increasing population for the sake of competing with others in order to maintain our race identity and political strenght…Hmmm need to do deep thinking