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Call on all Malaysians, regardless of race, religion, territory or political opinion to lend Pak Lah a helping hand to deliver his pledge of a clean, incorruptible, efficient, accountable, transparent and people-oriented administration
Hari Raya Message
by Lim Kit Siang
This auspicious day falls on the occasion of the two-year premiership of Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi as the fifth Prime Minister of Malaysia.
One of the unique and distinctive characteristics of plural Malaysia is that the major festivities of the various races and religions in the country are also national holidays, with all Malaysians participating in their celebration – a further strengthening of their bonds as Malaysian citizens transcending ethnicity and religion.
Let all Malaysians, regardless of race, religion, territory or political opinion, make a common wish and fervent commitment on the occasion of this year’s Hari Raya Aidilfitri that Malaysia finally gets on track, seriously and uncompromisingly, on the train to fulfil Pak Lah’s pledge of a clean, incorruptible, efficient, accountable, transparent and people-oriented administration with every Malaysian lending a hand to Pak Lah to help deliver his pledge.
Let us all be realistic that we have much lost ground to recover whether in national unity, integrity in public life, efficiency and commitment in public service, educational excellence, socio-economic justice and democracy before we can seriously talk about conceiving and implementing policies to transform Malaysia into a fully developed nation where there is both “First-World Infrastructure, First-World Mentality”.
The disgraceful episode in Parliament recently, where there is still no real remorse whether by the unrepentant and recalcitrant veteran UMNO MP who uttered the word “keling” in derogatory reference to the Indian community or by Barisan Nasional MPs generally, highlights the dismal state of nation-building 48 years after independent nationhood.
This has been further compounded by the denunciation of “Deeparaya” celebrations as “haram” by the Jabatan Mufti Perak last week where non-Muslims were referred in derogatory terms as “orang-orang kafir”, in disregard not only of past Deeparaya and Kongsi Raya celebrations whether under the Abdullah or Mahathir premiership but of the sensitivities of non-Muslims in the country.
The Parliamentary Select Committee on National Unity has indeed much to do to create the conditions for genuine progress in nation-building and national unity – as illustrated by the recent furore over the International Islamic University insensitivity in the compulsory imposition of the tudung on non-Muslim women graduates during the convocation.
Let all Malaysians on the occasion of Hari Raya Aidilfitri, as well as all national holidays to celebrate the rich diversity of the country’s multi-racial, multi-lingual, multi-religious and multi-cultural heritage, give some thought as to how we can all be more proud of our country because of tangible progress in national unity, religious tolerance and sensitivity, public integrity, economic prosperity, educational excellence, social justice, democratic culture and a vibrant civil society.
Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP
Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission
Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman