February 16, 2007

Institutional Nightmare

Posted in Malaysia at 7:25 pm by egalitaria

The government forms and shapes institutions like Zam churns out silly statements. Go figure.

How many institutions and organisations have we had in the past few decades? How many Commissions (whose recommendations we unfortunately fail to consider), how many committees, how many initiatives? How many Charters, how many Resolutions, how many more of these formations are needed before the content is actually Really Implemented? It reminds me of social protest singer Bob Dylan’s song, Blowing in the Wind: “How many roads must a man walk down, before you call him a man?”

We look great on paper. We churn out resolution after resolution. Everything on document looks picture perfect. But let’s get going on the recommendations, buddies.

So now we have Pemudah. But don’t we already have sufficient institutions that are SUPPOSED to come up with and brainstorm ideas for improving the public service delivery system already? Aren’t there already enough bodies that hopefully can come up with something feasible? Or does it mean that the system has failed us, that we need to keep coming up with Body after Body.

The real question to ask is this: Why is it that the current adminstrative system does not have what it takes to brainstorm new ideas? Why must new institutes and committees be set up? What IS the current administration doing then? Don’t get me wrong, I’m not questioning the capability (or even the necessity) of inviting people from outside the government to submit recommendations. My grouse is that it is for a negative reason that the private sector is being called upon, not a positive one. It’s not a “You are a valid representative we need to listen to”, it’s “We don’t know what to do. So yeah, come on board and please help”.

We’ll soon have bodiless heads mucking around Malaysia, with grand titles like Heads of Committees and Ex-Advisors to Commissions and the list goes on. We puff ourselves up with grand ideas, and strut around pretending to look great in the mirror. What an institutional nightmare we live in sometimes. But then again, maybe this is exactly how things need to get moving. Maybe humans are so incapable of anything but structured institutions where form weighs mightily more than substance. A sorry state of affairs.

1 Comment

  1. Sunny said,

    That’s what happens when inmates run the place. If you got skills, are under 45, speak English and want to remain sane, consider getting out. I did. Send a brief email about yourself for a free assessment to “easymigration@iprimus.com.au”. No obligation on you or me.


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