Malaysia can only succeed as a top-class nation competing with rest of the world if Malaysians adhere to the Constitution and Rukunegara principles to be good Malaysians by being good Muslims, good Buddhists, good Christians, good Hindus, good Sikhs and good Taoists
I want to start by apologizing to Hannah Yeoh, Selangor State Assembly Speaker and DAP State Assemblywoman for Subang Jaya, that although she gave me a copy of her book, “Becoming Hannah – A Personal Journey” more than two years ago, I did not get to reading it until she and her book became a controversy because an university academician in Universiti Utara Malaysia accused her of trying to “proselytize” Muslims.
It was then that I read her book.
I am not a Christian and reading her book, I do not feel that Hannah was trying to proselytize or Christianise any person from another faith. I do not feel “proselytized”! I am indeed surprised and shocked that an university academician can come to such a conclusion.
The book describes Hannah’s personal journey on how she got into politics and what it took to survive in it.
She is a Christian, but it did not mean that her candidature had the full support and blessings of all Christians, and she narrated the rebuffs she experienced in her election campaign by Christians, and the “discouraging” incident when she sought counsel from a pastor of a leading local church.
But what the Malaysian Constitution and Rukunegara fully recognized is Malaysia’s multi-racial and multi-religious character, and that Malaysia can only succeed as a top-class nation competing with rest of the world if Malaysians adhere to the Constitution and Rukunegara principles to be good Malaysians by being good Muslims, good Buddhists, good Christians, good Hindus, good Sikhs and good Taoists.
Hannah’s journey as a good Christian cannot threaten, but only fulfill, her journey as a good Malaysian; just as the journey of Muslims in Malaysia to be good Malaysians cannot be threatened by their journey to be good Muslims – as to be a good Muslim, just as being good Buddhists, good Christians, good Hindus, good Sikhs and good Taoists, is part of a journey by all Malaysians to be good Malaysians.
Recently, Malaysian body politics had been poisoned by the politics of lies, hate and fear, with bigotry, intolerance and fanaticism seeking to dictate public discourse and debate.
This is the irony of ironies, when Malaysia is seeking to preach the Wasatiyyah (moderation) principles of justice, balance, mutual respect and excellence to all communities, nations and faiths in the world through the Global Movement of Moderates (GMM) initiative, but inside the country in recent times, waasatiyyah seems to be giving way to very opposite values of extremism, excesses and fanaticism.
We are celebrating the 60th National Day anniversary this year. Let it be an occasionfor all Malaysians, regardless of race, religion, region or even politics, to re-set nation-building directions and policies for Malaysians to compete with the rest of the world and not to fight among ourselves to be more divided and lose out in the international race of nations for development and progress .
I have been trying to sound the warning that there are dark forces which are trying to falsely framing the next general election as a twin battle between the Malays and the Chinese as well as between Islam and the enemies of Islam.
Both these false and irresponsible scenarios are designed to plunge Malaysia into unprecedented division, discord and disunity.
Malaysian men and women goodwill and moderation from all communities and faiths must come together to save Malaysia from such desperadoes who want to hijack the national discourse and plunge the nation into chaos to achieve their nefarious ends.