Cabinet should devote its last meeting of the year on 28th Dec to review how Malaysian nation-building took a wrong turn when Ministers strayed away from Rukunegara principles and objectives, resulting in the 1MDB scandal, Malaysia becoming a global kleptocracy and Najib’s very “ethnic nationalistic” speech as UMNO President

We are now in the last week of the year 2016.

Its time for reflection and introspection – not so much as to what went right but what went wrong in our nation as 2016 is an even worse annus horribilis for Malaysia than 2015.

A year ago, the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak in his 2016 New Year message, told Malaysians that his RM50 billion 1MDB and RM2.6 billion donation twin mega scandals had been resolved and were no more issues.

Najib could not be more wrong as Malaysia’s international repute and standing suffered an even worse battering this year with the ferocious pounding of the twin mega scandals in the international marketplace of opinion, to the extent that Malaysians felt embarrassed in admitting that they were Malaysians when abroad.

Malaysia was cited for the third “worst corruption scandal of 2015” by international website in the last week of last year, but we went on to accumulate more dishonours this year – like TIME magazine’s ranking in March as second worst example of global corruption, Economist’s ranking in May as second in its index of crony capitalism and in July, the US Department of Justice (DOJ)’s largest kleptocratic lawsuits to forfeit US$1 billion of 1MDB-linked assets in the United States, United Kingdom and Switzerland from US3.5 billion international 1MDB kleptocratic embezzlement and money-laundering scandal.

These were not the only woes for the country for this year – as the country is going through th worst crisis of confidence as evidenced by the worst plummeting in the value of the Malaysian ringgit and the worst racial and religious polarisation in the nation’s history.

What went wrong and how can we put the country right again, so that Malaysians can hold their heads high, whether at home or abroad?

I believe one important lesson is that Malaysia would have been spared the international multi-billion dollar 1MDB money-laundering scandal and the infamy and ignominy of being regarded worldwide as a global kleptocracy, as well as all the national woes we are suffering, if the Government had not strayed away from the five Rukunegara principles and objectives.

For decades, our school children have been asked to recite the five principles of Rukunegara, viz: Belief in God; Loyalty to King and Country; Upholding the Constitution; Rule of Law and Good Behaviour and Morality.

But sadly, the Ministers and government leaders themselves forgot to observe and honour these five Rukunegara principles and the Rukunegara objectives to achieve a greater Malaysian unity; maintain a democratic way of life; create a just society in which the wealth of the nation shall be equitably shared; ensure a liberal approach to our rich and diverse cultural traditions; and build a progressive society which shall be oriented to modern science and technology.

Yesterday, at the annual Christian Federation of Malaysia Christmas hi-tea in Kuala Lumpur, the Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department, Datuik Paul Low said Malaysians must not allow ethnic nationalism to rise in the country, where one ethnic group says it is superior than the others.

This is another infamous example of Ministers uttering high-sounding words but have neither intention nor political will to “walk the talk”.

Is Paul Low aware that the worst example of such ethnic nationalism rearing its ugly head is the UMNO presidential speech of the Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Razak less than a month ago on November 30?

We do not even have to refer to the warning of a UMNO Youth leader to the Chinese community that they may be further alienated if they continue to support the DAP!

Did Low ever express, whether in Cabinet or outside, his concern at Najib’s speech?

Low said that Christians need to be politically relevant and make their voices heard.

Last year, at the same function, Low said if the government was God-fearing, there would be no need for him to be in the Cabinet.

It was a cryptic speech, redolent with implications.

Was Low implying that the Najib administration was not a God-fearing one, which was why the country was inundated with so many political, economic and nation-building crisis?

Was Low the only “God-fearing” Minister in the Cabinet, and did he speak up last year and this year, to ensure that the Cabinet does not stray away fron five Rukunegara principles and Rukunegara objectives so as not to lose the moral compass , whether over scandals like the 1MDB money-laundering scandal, Malaysia joining the club of “global kleptocracy” or the rise of ethnic nationalism of the most virulent and divisive kind as advocated by some UMNO Ministers and leaders?

Wednesday is the Cabinet’s last meeting this year. May be the

Cabinet should devote its last meeting of the year on 28th Dec to review how Malaysian nation-building took a wrong turn when Ministers strayed away from Rukunegara principles and objectives, resulting in the 1MDB scandal, Malaysia becoming a global kleptocracy as well as the Prime Minister’s very “ethnic nationalistic” speech as UMNO President only last month!

Lim Kit Siang DAP Parliamentary Leader & MP for Gelang Patah