The national service program was first proposed in late 2001, brought to committee the following year, and was finally brought to action in 2003. Initially it was thought that all youths of a certain age would be drafted but later the numbers were restricted due to lack of resources. The program was also initially planned as a 2-year program, which was later reduced to a year, and then six months, and to its present three-month length. The issue of conscription has always been a sensitive political issue in Malaysia because of the ethnic divisions of the country. The rationale for National Service was to bond the youth of Malaysia together and create a Malaysian nation, as the problem of racial polarization was found to pervade educational institutions in Malaysia.
Objectives of the PLKN
• Develop a young generation who are patriotic and with love and devotion for their country • Enhance unity among the multi-racial communities in the country • Instill a spirit of caring and volunteerism among society • Produce an active, intelligent and confident generation • Develop positive characteristics among the younger generation through good values • Develop a generation that is obedient and loyal to the government
• Rape, Merang Camp, Setiu, Terengganu, on 28 February. A female trainee, 17, was raped by Corporal Zuki Mohd, 30, in a Perodua Kancil in the Rhu Tapai agro-industrial estate in Setiu between 7.28pm and 9.10pm on February 28. Zuki Mohd had been employed as a physical module instructor at Merang Camp. The trial began on 14 December 2004 at the Terengganu Sessions Court, and ended on 20 December 2005. Zuki, a military personnel from Kampung Bari Besar, Setiu, was convicted of raping the girl by the Terengganu Sessions Court and was sentenced to 12 years' jail and three strokes of the rotan. The female trainee later sued the trainer as well as the government for negligence. •...