BEIJING - Former Malaysian newscaster Victor Gu has become an attraction in China with his passionate views on Chinese education, which he amply demonstrated over a Beijing TV channel recently.
He did it in a contest on oratory skills, which has attracted millions of audience in China and also South-East Asia via YouTube and social media.
Gu, who is also a former marketing director for The Star Media group's 988 radio station, impressed judges with his spirited talk on Chinese education in Malaysia to mainland Chinese audience in the first episode of reality show I am Speaker.
Highlighting that Chinese education in Malaysia is the fruit of the collective labour of Chinese Malaysians, Gu's speech was deemed good enough to progress to the second level of the contest.
"I wanted to use the platform to talk about the current situation of the Chinese in Malaysia. After brainstorming with a group of friends, I decided to focus on education," the 37-year-old told The Star in a phone interview.
In his speech, he said those who defended Chinese education risked being accused of racism.
"I am a Malaysian and I love my country. This is my national identity. At the same time, I am ethnically Chinese and I love Chinese culture. This is my cultural identity.
"This is why we have persevered (with Chinese education) generation after generation," he said.
Three out of the four judges - Hong Kong actor Dicky Cheung, actress Carina Lau, Chinese TV hosts Le Jia and Chen Luyu - indicated that they wanted him to join their respective teams.
Gu eventually decided to join Chen's team.
Gu, who contested for the Damansara Utama state seat in the 2008 general election under an MCA ticket, is now deputy general manager of the Zhuhai International Circuit in Guangdong province.
He also coaches the debating team at the Zhuhai campus of Beijing Normal University during his free time, given that debating has been his passion since secondary school.
It was his involvement in debating circles that caught the attention of the production team of the show, which then invited him to participate.
The Universiti Malaya graduate, who majored in Chinese Studies, said he had yet to think of a topic for the next round of the competition but revealed that he would focus on a thought-provoking social issue.