World of Coins

Modern Asian coins, pseudo coins and trade tokens => Other South-East Asia => Topic started by: gpimper on January 13, 2020, 11:44:08 PM

Title: 1995 1 Sen
Post by: gpimper on January 13, 2020, 11:44:08 PM
I believe this is the second of this series.  1995 1 Sen Ringett.  Revers is a Rebana (but don't quote me on that spelling :-)  Malay drum used in Islamic music in South East Asia.  Small denomination but still interesting in the design.  1.738g and 17mm.  I probably picked this up in the late '90s while in Kuala Lumpur :-)
Title: Re: 1995 1 Sen
Post by: Figleaf on January 14, 2020, 05:19:32 PM
It happens more often that a coin is characterised by what is NOT on it. So it is with this one. On one side, you see a rebana ubi (, a large version of a traditional Malay tambourine. On the other side is a hibiscus rosa, a sub-tropical plant that grows abundantly in South-east Asia. It will also survive a mild to normal winter in temperate climate zones. Malaysia has chosen it as its national plant. The denomination, sen, derived from cent has its roots in the Straits dollar. In fact, 100 sen is equal to a ringgit, a unit that uses the symbol $.

So what's missing? The dirty secret of the country is that its government practises race discrimination just as much as South Africa used to. It divides its population between bumiputras (Malaysians) and the rest. That rest is mainly Chinese (about 25%) and Indian (about 7.5%). These figures are heavily correlated with figures for religions. Everyone is obliged to carry an identity card on which their government determined racial status is indicated and which they must carry at all times. Inevitably, as in South Africa, groups of people lose or obtain bumiputra status by government fiat. Non-bumiputras are discriminated from birth - they don't get citizenship automatically. Secondary education is segragated. Only 10% of places in university are available to non-bumiputra, seeking many to study outside the country if they can afford it.

Sure enough, everything on this coin, even everything on the whole series which this coin is part of is bumiputra. This is exactly the reason why Singapore broke away from Malaysia and why the two states still don't get along.

Title: Re: 1995 1 Sen
Post by: gpimper on January 14, 2020, 07:28:33 PM
Peter, I have a 3-meter hibiscus in my back yard ;D  Malaysia is, in my experience, only one of many countries that have rampant discrimination.  Just about every country in the middle East, Africa and southern Asia have their issues.  Not to mention China!  Singapore, Japan and (to a lesser degree) Bahrain are some of few exceptions that I’ve seen (not that they are perfect, though).
Title: Re: 1995 1 Sen
Post by: Figleaf on January 14, 2020, 08:43:07 PM
I can confirm several of your examples and have a few more, but they are due to the attitude of the local population and government policy is working in the opposite direction. What sets Malaysia apart is that discrimination is government policy.

We have some hibiscus bushes in the garden with different colours of flowers. They are bewitchingly beautiful when in bloom.

Title: Re: 1995 1 Sen
Post by: gpimper on January 14, 2020, 11:39:03 PM
I miss the bushes we had in Hawaii...amazing!