Boleh means 'Can' and is often used in conjunction with Malaysia – 'Malaysia can!'
Fueled by financing from a government-owned investment fund, 1MDB, Kuala Lumpur and other Malaysian cities are experiencing a construction boom. Yet 1MDB, and Najib Razak, the prime minister and patron of the fund, are in trouble, plagued by accusations of corruption.
By 2020, Malaysia had aspired for its premier city to attain the label of ‘world class city’ with a new, $ 50 billion urban transport network – the Klang Valley Mass Rapid Transit Project – its gleaming centre piece.
A complete overhaul of the city is seeing many old buildings torn down to make way for gleaming new skyscrapers to rival the famous Petronas Towers. A web of wide highways, sometimes three levels high, connects the different parts of town.
Residents are clinging onto the few green spaces left amidst the forest of cranes. And while the government is trumpeting the new transport infrastructure as a panacea to the city’s congestion problems, uptake has been slow and not all parts of the city are covered. So, ‘Malaysia Boleh’?