Cabinet Ministers and senior government leaders need a re-education in Rukunegara as they seemed to have forgotten its principles and objectives

At the Cabinet meeting on Wednesday, the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak should direct all Cabinet Ministers and senior government leaders to undergo a re-education in the Rukunegara as they seemed to have forgotten the Rukunegara principles and objectives 43 years after their promulgation.

Although the five Rukunegara principles have been taught in the schools in the past four decades, many Malaysians, including the Cabinet Ministers and senior government leaders will not be able repeat them offhand.

The Rukunegar principles are:


The Deputy Prime Minister, Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin most famous statement as DPM in the past five years was his repudiation in March 2010 of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s 1Malaysia policy which is to build a Malaysian nation where every Malaysian regards himself or herself first as a Malaysian and race, religion, region or socio-economic status second.

But Muhyiddin declared that he was “Malay first, Malaysian second” – which is an infringement of the second principle of the Rukunegara – “loyalty to king and country”.

How can Muhyiddin claim to be loyal to the Malaysian nation when he is not prepared to unconditionally accept the second Rukunegara principle of “Loyalty to country”?

Is Muhyiddin now prepared to modify his declaration in accordance with the second Rukunegara principle and declare that he is “Malaysian first, Malay second” just as I had declared in Parliament in March 2010 that I was “Malaysian first, Chinese second”?

Similarly, the Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar had broken the third and fourth Rukunegara principles of “Upholding the Constitution” and “The Rule of Law” when the police are guilty of the double standards of selective investigation and selective prosecution, when they were so quick and prompt in investigating Father Lawrence Andrew and DAP MP for Seputeh Teresa Kok for sedition while being either tardy or completely indifferent to the slew of offences committed, including criminal intimidation, by the Perak mufti Harussani Zakaria and the self-styled “Council of Islamic NGOs” involved in the “chicken and slap” demonstration in Kuala Lumpur on Feb. 6?

The fourth and fifth Rukunegara principles of “The Rule of Law” and “Good Behaviour and Morality” are violated in the government’s losing battle against corruption, as testified by the lowly ranking of Malaysia in the Transparency International’s annual Corruption Perception Index from 1995-2004 and the failure to bring the “sharks” of corruption to justice!

Can the Cabinet Ministers and senior government officers tell us what are the five objectives of nation-building spelt out in the Rukunegara.

I doubt many of them can, judging by the results of nation-building in the past few decades or even worse, by the past nine months of government efforts since the 13th general elections last May.

Let me remind the Cabinet Ministers and the senior government officials that the five objectives of Rukunegara nation-building are:

  • Achieving a greater unity of all the people;
  • Maintaining a democratic way of life;
  • Creating a just society in which the wealth of the nation shall be equitably shared;
  • Ensuring a liberal approach to her rich and diverse cultural tradition; and
  • Building a progressive society which shall be oriented to modern science and technology.

I challenge the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak to present a White Paper at the forthcoming Parliamentary meeting on March 10 to outline how his government had succeeded in promoting these five objectives since he became Prime Minister in the past five years.

In fact I dare say that Malaysia will not be facing the worst racial and religious polarisation today, with the incessant incitement of racial and religious animosities, hatred, conflict and tension by reckless, irresponsible and traitorous elements to create racial chaos and religious conflagration if everyone in Malaysia had fully accepted the Rukunegara principles and objectives, not just in words but also in deeds.

A good example is the “chicken and slap” demonstration by the self-styled “Council of Islamic NGOs against Teresa Kok in Kuala Lumpur on Feb. 6 which clearly violated three Rukunegara principles (“Upholding the Constitution”, “The Rule of Law” and “Good Behaviour and Morality” and three Rukunegara objectives on unity, democracy and liberal society.

The trouble-makers like the self-styled “Council of Islamic NGOs” should not only be prosecuted for their criminal offences, they should go back to school to learn the basics of the Rukunegara!

Lim Kit Siang DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Gelang Patah