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An Article From Vicinity Perak - From Chinese Nationalism To Malaysian Chinese - Volume 2 Issue 12, September 2006
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The early 19th and 20th centuries, the Chinese migrated to the Malay Peninsula expecting better economic prospects. Many Chinese were active Kuomintang members and since it had not been banned in British Malaya, Perak had become this secret society’s stronghold. Its importance grew under the leadership of Leong Sin Nam. Leong, an origin of China, ventured into business at 19 and became the founder of many local financial institutions. He was also the leader of the Kah Yin Hakkas in Perak.
He was succeeded by Lau Pak Khuan who was involved in the mining industry. He later became a prominent Malaysian Chinese Association (MCA) leader. MCA was founded in 1949 by Kuomintang members as a need to save the Chinese being sent back to China. Leong Yew Koh was instrumental to the formation of MCA. It was he who also assisted to spearhead the UMNO-MCA-MIC alliance. As the Chinese were mistaken for communists after 1950, they were prosecuted by the Japanese and terrorised by the Communists.
Even after several attacks by the communists, the MCA grew stronger in their effort to raise the standard of living amongst the Chinese. The general elections in 1955 saw the victory of the Alliance represented by MCA. The fight for citizenship for the Chinese was of utmost importance to MCA which resulted in automatic citizenship for those born after Independence. Some prominent MCA leaders were elected officers of the State in continuance of the glorious legacy of MCA.
To read more about Towkay Leong Sin Nam JP OBE click here.
To read more about Towkay Lau Pak Khuan, click here.