Race relations were much better in the sixties because of Tunku Abdul Rahman, recalled Dato’ William S.W. Davidson, during his talk, ‘Down Memory Lane’ organised by Perak Academy and held in Syuen Hotel. He added that Tunku would be turning in his grave if he could hear the advice given to Muslims by religious leaders today, to not attend functions in Chinese and Indian households.
Dato’ William, a prominent lawyer, started his practice in Ipoh in1963 and has been in the country since then. His main recollection of memories were those related to his law practice. He attended his first case with lawyer A. Mahendran in Cameron Highland. The case was brief and the rest of the day was spent in entertainment till late night. He spoke at length of other interesting cases and prominent people in the legal profession.
In the sixties there were still many expatriates in Ipoh working in the mining and plantation industries and many business decisions were made in the Ipoh Club when Ipoh was the mining capital of the world.
He spoke of the Ipoh Town Council when it was run by the Seenivasagam brothers saying that the brothers employed the right calibre of people and the Council was professionally administered. His personal view is if D.R. Seenivasagam had not passed away so early, PPP would not have joined BN.
He ended by saying cricket is his hobby and the Ipoh Padang had the best pitch in the country and it is sad that the underground piping is damaged and the pitch is in bad condition. He wished that the pitch would be restored to its original status.
The event saw the launching of the book “The Last Post – Story of the Emergency & Commemorative Events 1948-1960” by its author Dato’ R. Thambipillay. This book is the third and revised edition of his earlier book “Gods Little Acre”, relating to the Malayan Emergency. Thambipillay presented a copy of the book to Dato’ William. The earlier book was reviewed in Issue 138 of Ipoh Echo. The price of the book is RM80 and is available from Perak Academy.