The long struggle for democracy and freedom against the Dictatorship in Burma

The long struggle for democracy and freedom against the Dictatorship in Burma has been forcing Burmese people to seek a safer and a better life in Malaysia. Since 1962, Burma has been brutally ruled by the Junta. There is no freedom, democracy and respect for human dignity but there is only misery, rape, forced forceful conscript, religious persecution, arbitrary detention, abuses, corruption and discrimination, all systematically designed by the Junta. In addition, Junta’s policy is nepotism, anti- ethnic nationalities and anti-non-Buddhists, anti-foreigner/foreign country, and anti-against them even their God- monks. This kind of Junta’s inhuman policy forces hundred of thousand of Burmese people to become refugees here. Frankly, the Junta committed every possible human rights abuses and violations in Burma, but nobody can stop the Junta yet in Burma.

Many of Burmese refugees come to Malaysia by boat and car/bus, enduring harassment and abuses on their way to this country, all for the sake of seeking a safer life and a better life in Malaysia, even though the government is not a signatory to the UN Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees nor does it or provide any protection to refugees and asylum seekers. As expected, Malaysia offers more security and opportunities to better their lives when compared to Burma where the Junta is above the Law. Most Malaysians are almost always nice to people of all races, cultures, and religions. Most project sympathy for their fellow human beings, especially those who have been subjected to life endangerment, persecution and abuses

As Malaysia is a multi-racial country, the lifestyles of their citizens are slightly different from one another. But they built Malaysia together and they share equal responsibility and obligations towards the progress of their country. Malaysia is a peaceful and prosperous country, and so are the people. They wish to be happy, they hate discrimination, they love justice, and they want to live in harmony. They also value democracy and freedom. It is with these sentiments that the ordinary Malaysian welcomes refugees from Burma with deep concerns.

When I, a refugee from Burma, came to Malaysia, I learnt many things from her people. What I learnt is helpfulness, kindness, politeness, calmness, honesty, responsibility and faithfulness. If you have ever been in Malaysia, I am sure you would know what kind of persons Malaysians are. They are good, they are kind, and they are responsible.

One of the Burmese refugees told me that if Malaysian refugees were in Burma, the country would kick them out. We know ourselves, what kind of background we have come from and why we have come to Malaysia. We know we come from a land where the Junta controls its own people with injustice, dishonesty, unfaithfulness, disrespect and irresponsibility. I do not mean we are unjust, dishonest, unfaithful, disrespectful and irresponsible, but I mean we come from Burma where there is no justice, freedom and rule of law because of the Military Regime’s Policy of governing Burma.

Wherever we live, there will be good people and bad people. All people can not be good. What I meant is some will not be good to us refugees even among ourselves. That is very natural and common in this World. But most of Malaysians are good to us refugees; they provide us clothes, food and basic needs .Actually, they don’t have too much to share it with us refugees, but they share it with us refugees because they can not keep silently their compassion, love and goodwill towards us refugees when they witnessed how much we suffer here since in our country till today. That’s why they spare the things generously what they have and share it with us to suffer less in here. Furthermore, they are always trying to educate us refugees how to stay and how to behave in this country – living like local people and to get employment , they also even educate us how to behave and walk in front of Police and Immigration who too often arrest refugees on public road. For those who learned well and behaved from what they educated us, they are safer and more getting employment than who didn’t learn from them. One funny thing I would to tell you but it is very useful for both our mental health and our life. Malaysia people often encourage us “Laugh, laugh, laugh” and “smile, smile, smile”. Laugh and smile is very important to our mental health and good appearance. They added if you look like fresher, active and brighter, Malaysia Boss will employ you. But if you look like sad, tired and weak, how can Malaysia boss employ you? Of course, everybody will also not like to employ people who look like sad, tired and weak.

I know we are now in falling time, but I have hope that our country will change dictatorship into Democracy in future, and then we will rise again like the morning Sun from this falling time. Let me take this opportunity once to request Malaysia and her people to stand with Burmese people, not with the Junta, and to protect us refugees again from handing in human traffickers, and from arresting us refugees as illegal or undocumented .Let me hope for us refugees to get more effective support and protection from Malaysia and her people.

I am sure most of the refugees here feel the same gratitude as me towards Malaysia and her people. We know her people are nice to us, we know we are safer here than in Burma, we know we can also enjoy the Malaysian food and clean environment. We know we will meet many difficulties along the way; but we take comfort in the knowledge that we also contribute to the economy of this country and assist its people in their businesses.

I will remember Malaysia and her people and the kindness shown to me. The generations to follow will know of this kindness from written accounts such as this and verbal story as well. I know I have limited time here, I also know I have to maintain a good relationship with my friends who help me when I am in need. I thank Malaysia and her people for their continuous support shown to us refugees. I wish this country and her people continued development and prosperity.