SA has a lot to learn from Malaysia's experience of affirmative action

After 50 years the Asian country could teach us what not to do

28 March 2021 - 00:00 By HWOK-AUN LEE

This year, Malaysia and SA reach milestones unique to each - 2021 marks a half century of Malaysia's New Economic Policy (NEP), and a quarter century since the enactment of SA's constitution, both of which are cornerstones of affirmative action. Debates surrounding affirmative action - how equitably it distributes benefits, whether it is effective, what lies on its far horizons - also permeate both societies.

"Affirmative action" can be defined as: policies that facilitate the upward mobility of a disadvantaged group and increase their participation in higher education, professional and managerial positions, enterprise and wealth ownership...

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