Call on Malaysians to rise above the fissiparous and centrifugal forces threatening to tear Malaysia apart and reunite to build a New Malaysia which is a top world-class nation of unity, freedom, justice, excellence and integrity

The 62nd National Day on August 31 is about two weeks away while the 56th Malaysia Day falls on September 16 in about a month’s time.

Let us embark on a New Malaysia Month from tomorrow till September 16 to rise above the fissisparous and centrifugal forces threatening to tear Malaysia apart and reunite to build a New Malaysia which is a top world-class nation of unity, freedom, justice, excellence and integrity.

If we do this, the 2019 New Malaysia Month will be an important chapter in the Long March from the trajectory of a failed, rogue and kleptocratic state to a top world-class nation of unity, freedom, justice, excellence and integrity, which started in the 14th General Election on May 9, 2018.

As I had said many a time, this is a national mission which will take more one general election cycle to complete as a New Malaysia cannot be established overnight.

Let Malaysians take ownership of this great mission to build a New Malaysia which is a top world-class nation of unity, freedom, justice, excellence and integrity, based on the five pillar-promises of the Pakatan Harapan in the 14th General Elections Manifesto, viz:

  • Reduce the people’s burden.
  • Institutional and political reforms.
  • Spur sustainable and equitable economic growth.
  • Restore Sabah and Sarawak to the status accorded in Malaysia Agreement 1963.
  • Create a Malaysia that is inclusive, moderate and respected globally.

There are those who do not expect the Pakatan Harapan government in Putrajaya, a coalition of four political parties with different histories, ideologies and trajectories, to last more than a few months, but it has proved the prophets of doom wrong – as the coalition is developing a resilience and an united ethos to chart the country through the troubled waters towards a New Malaysia, a national mission which will take more than one general election cycle to complete.

The Pakatan Harapan government in Putrajaya has survived for 15 months the various stress and strain, contradictions and controversies, of building a New Malaysia, but these are comparatively minor tests, as it must be able to persevere and be united and steadfast with greater challenges in the national mission to build a New Malaysia by winning the 15th and even 16th General Elections for the great national work to be done.

The Pakatan Harapan government must never lose sight of the objective to build a world top-class nation of unity, freedom, justice, excellence and integrity.

Can Malaysia, by the 16th General Election in 2018, be perched for the consummation of the objective to become a top world-class nation, recognised as being ranked among the top 30 nations in the world in important fields of human endeavour?

This is my dream and I challenge Malaysians to dare to have great dreams for Malaysia, and even more important, to dedicate themselves to the fulfilment of these dreams.

Political leaders with great dreams for Malaysia must be prepared for great sacrifices, even to be wronged for doing what is right, just and good.

I am demonized by some extremist Malay forces as the Great Devil who wants to eradicate the rights and future of the Malays, and who have become so powerful as to make the Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad as my stooge.

But at the same time, I am demonized by certain irrational non-Malay forces as wanting to betray Chinese and Indian rights and having become the “running dog” of Mahathir!

How it is possible for a person to perform these contradictory roles is not something which worries these pedlars of lies, falsehoods, fake news, fear and hate, pitting race against race, religion against religion.

There is no basis in all these attacks, whether from the extremist Malay forces or the irrational non-Malay forces.

Currently, I am accused of hypocrisy and being a Chinese chauvinist because of my statement yesterday criticising Islamic preacher Zakir Naik for abusing Malaysia’s hospitality by attacking the Chinese Malaysia as “old guests” after attacking the loyalty of the Indian Malaysians.

I am accused of speaking up against Zakir Naik only after he attacked the Chinese Malaysians as “pendatang” and that I was unconcerned when the Indian Malaysians were his targets.

Such irresponsible accusers do not bother to check the facts, that I had previously criticised Zakir Naik for his baseless attack on the Indian Malaysians, or that every much earlier, I had expressed support for the Open Letter by Anas Zubedy giving four reasons why Zakir Naik should leave Malaysia voluntarily.

Accusations had also been made as to why the Zakir Naik issue was left to the two “Indian Ministers”, Gobind Singh and M. Kulasegaran, when this was not true at all.

Firstly, Gobind and Kula are in Cabinet not as “Indian Ministers” but as Malaysian Ministers.

Secondly, the Zakir Naik issue was not left to Gobind and Kula to raise, but had been the concern of the six DAP Ministers who had, under the leadership of the DAP Secretary-General and Finance Minister, Lim Guan Eng, discussed and concurred on the issue before the Cabinet yesterday.

Thirdly, the Cabinet did not decide its concern because of Zakir’s attack on the Chinese Malaysians, as the Malaysiakini report on Zakir’s unsolicited attack on the Chinese Malaysians came out only after the Cabinet meeting.

I commend the Minister for Youth and Sports, Syed Saddiq Abdul Rahman for showing a fine example of a New Malaysian, backing calls for Zakir Naik’s deportation as Zakir’s statement about the Indians and Chinese in the country was an attack on all Malaysians.

As Syed Saddiq rightly said, Chinese Malaysians are not "guests" but Malaysian citizens who loved the country and their loyalty to Malaysia should not be questioned.

I applaud Syed Saddiq for the following statement: "I know many Chinese and Indians who are willing to die for this country that they love. It is ridiculous to even think that my fellow Malaysians are my guests.

"They are my family for god's sake. Enough is enough."

The six DAP Ministers and seven Deputy Ministers work closely on the burning issues facing the country, whether on Zakir Naik, Jawi or Lynas.

DAP Ministers and Deputy Ministers are in office not because of the perks and privileges but because it provides them with an opportunity to achieve the national goal of a New Malaysia.

I am happy and proud that the DAP Ministers and Deputy Ministers have acquitted themselves well, and they have not forgotten that they are in office to serve the people and not to serve themselves.

Lim Kit Siang MP for Iskandar Puteri