Getting to know NEGERI SEMBILAN

We have ventured into Jempol, one of the districts in Negeri Sembilan.   Now let’s get to know the state itself.

Negeri Sembilan,  in the west of Peninsular Malaysia,  is a small but interesting state with a rich culture and heritage.   Translated literally as   ‘nine states’ ,   the state once consisted of nine districts   each  ruled by a Malay chieftain.

Negeri Sembilan is often identified with the pervasive influence of the Minangkabau culture,  reflected in the unswept roofs reminiscent of buffalo horns.    Many of its traditional houses and modern state buildings are fine examples of this distinctive architecture.  A unique feature of the state is the ADAT PERPATIH,  a matrilineal social system practiced by the present day descendants.  The system is evident in  clan and marriage customs,  property ownership and dance forms.

The state capital of Seremban,  an hour’s drive from the nation’s capital Kuala Lumpur,  is a flourishing urban centre with several historic and cultural landmarks.   The State Museum and Cultural Handicraft Complex,  State Mosque and the Lake Gardens are among Seremban’s attractions.

Seaside resort of Port Dickson,  washed by the gentle waters of the Straits of Malacca,  is a popular destination for locals and foreigners alike.

Venturing into the Minangkabau heartland,  one finds picturesque villages and quiant towns,  the highlight being the royal enclave of Sri Menanti,  the site of Malaysia’s largest traditional timber palace.  Elsewhere in Negeri Sembilan,  encounters with nature await the adventurous amidst its verdant rainforests,  rivers and waterfalls.



A short visit to Bandar Seri Jempol

Bandar Seri Jempol is the administrative hub of the District of Jempol in the State of Negeri Sembilan.   Previously it was known as Bandar Baru Serting … I believe after the name of a river flowing in the district  –  Serting River.

Bandar Seri Jempol has the making of a ‘capital town’ in the district.  Its strategic location at the road junction connecting the states of Johor and Pahang with Negeri Sembilan.    In it are located  the main government departments of the district.

You have the MAJLIS DAERAH JEMPOL or the Jempol District Council.

Majlis Daerah Jempol

Pejabat Daerah & Tanah Jempol

You will find the building housing the PEJABAT DAERAH DAN TANAH or the District and Land Office of Jempol.   Not far from these two buildings are the headquarters of the Federal Land Development Authority or FELDA.   As you enter the town you will come across the Mosque and next to it are two schools.  And within the town area you can find the Post Office and the Distric Police Headquarters.

The Jempol District Hospital is situated nearby … on the fringe of  Bandar Seri Jempol.

And the shop houses in the town….modern architectural design and logically laid out … a means of preventing traffic jams.

This is the town of Bandar Seri Jempol …the centre of development activities  in the Districtof Jempol in Negeri Sembilan.

A proud town with proud people.

To A Beautiful Future

Republished from my other site/blog   MY THOUGHTS & OPINION

In this modern world, when we discuss about things … things that would help us move into a beautiful future, we tend to focus more attention to the urban population. We would use the urban-type of life we are living today as a benchmark … and that it is the life common to all. We would come to the conclusion that our requirements and needs are that of everyone irrespective of the geographical location. We tend to forget the other segment of our community … those who live in the rural areas, where life is not so modern … where life is more on a day to day basis.

I believe not everyone of us live in an urban surrounding. Some maybe living in high rise modern condominiums today, but probably our father or his father before him started life in the rural area, where life is much simpler.

My point is, not every country in the world have reached the developed status. Some are still struggling to develop. Hence we have the socio-economic-political groupings known as the developed nation, the developing nation and the underdeveloped nation. The life scenarios in each grouping is different. This I believe is the perspective we have to put right. This should be the basis of our discussion or argument when it comes to talking about what should be done and what should be our contribution to create a better future for all mankind.

When we talk about the different types of nations, we will come across differing needs and requirements.

In a country like mine – Malaysia – for instance, the focus of our attention is more to bring education to the masses, with special emphasis to the rural people. We feel that education is the main ingredient of development. And this is other than the development programs planned and implemented for them, under the many national development plans launched since our independence some 50 years ago.

Of course, we have the big cities where the standard and style of living is comparable to those of other major cities of the world. But the city or urban population make up only a small percentage of our total population of 27 million people. And because of this, the development programs are carefully planned so that they meet the requirements and needs of everyone … in particular the rural folks. And that the physical development of the country is carried out hand in hand with the mental and spiritual development of the population.

This I have to emphasise.

Much have been said, and we have heard a lot about plans and programs to bring us a better future. I have read papers written by professors, specialists and the many experts on the relevant subjects. Most are beautifully written. A lot of research must have been done to produce such thesis and proposals. But the pages upon pages of suggestions and recommendations, when we think about it, are very difficult for the ordinary man like me to understand. I personally find that all these are written with the practical aspects marginalized.
I feel, whatever proposals we have from amongst us should be oriented towards practical implementation. In other words, what we suggest should be easily practiced by everyone. Otherwise, suggestions and proposals will remain what they are.

I know there are many experts and specialists in our midst, and I believe we can contribute a lot to the effort of creating a better and safer world in the future. I believe too, since we come from different backgrounds with different professional experiences, our thoughts and proposals when pieced together can do what others have tried all these while.

To a beautiful future.

Looking at ‘DEVELOPMENT’

When the word ‘development’ is mentioned,  what normally is the scenario unfolding in our minds.  To us living in a country which is still undergoing the process of development,  we would see projects especially physical projects … the building of roads,  modern buildings,  schools,  hospitals  and  housing estates.   This,  to most us is development.  To most of us development means the physical development of an area … the urban area and not forgetting the rural areas.  We believe that development is a process that will enable us to live in modern surroundings … with modern facilities at par with those found in modern and developed countries in the world.  To us development is living with modern aminities like satelite broadcasts,  the Internet,  state of the art homes with air conditioning systems and so on and so forth.

We would then compare,  and in some cases we would be proud to see this physical development in our home area.

But,  is this the development that we are looking  for?  Is this the end of our struggle to bring development to our life.

Many feel that development covers a wider area and discipline.  I personally feel that development should include the development of the mind … the development of our thinking,  our look at life … and what we can benefit from it to help us through life to a better future.

Development is something ‘big’ …. something which should be able to change our ways of life ….  which would be useful to our children in their education … and something that will be our guiding light into the future.

On this,  I strongly feel that physical development should go hand in hand with mental development.  Only with this could we face the future with more confidence and ease.

This is my thought as a ‘layman’.

Understanding Development

Before we venture into the realm of development,  let us take a look at the stress on development itself.   Let us consider the definitions and explanation put forth by experts on this subject.

An excerpt from a paper entitled ‘Rethinking the Policy Objectives of Development Aid: From Economic Grouwth to Conflict Prevention’  by the United Nations University,  has this to say:

‘The current consensus objective of development aid in the international community is to reduce poverty in general and to achieve the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) in particular. In addition, the dominant view identifies economic growth as the principal means to this end. But the policy objective of aid can be defined in many ways, and has in fact varied over time with shifting priorities within the international community about the ultimate ends of development and the means for advancing those ends.’

The full text of this paper can be followed on: 

Now let us take a look at the Guyana National Objectives on Development.  Here is the relevant excerpt:

‘The development process must be visualised in its broadest context if it is to meet the expectations of the citizenry for a more elevated standard of living. Accordingly, the most all-encompassing goal of development is the progressive realisation of the abilities and talents of each individual for his/her own satisfaction and enhancement of the good of the community and the nation. This is what is meant by the concept of human development, or people-centered development.’

The full text of this paper can be followed on:

And finally let us have a look at an excerpt of a 2004 paper entitled  ‘Development in Malaysia:  Economics and Political Idea’  by  Lee Hwok Aun    of   University Malaya:

‘Development is a frequently spoken word in Malaysia,  usually in reference to the Nation’s economic goals and achievements and also as a political platform and rallying point.   However,  despite of this prominence  the meaning of development is rarely questioned.  In part the difficulty of such questioning is that development has occurred to an obvious and tangible degree.  At the same time the determination of development hinges on the definition of the term;  the degree of success depends on the yardstick of measurement.’

You can read the full paper by Dr Lee on:

The three excerpts above is the beginning of our understanding of the term development.   We will explore the reality of these statements in respect of the development scenario in Malaysia,  in my next post.