Challenge for DAP is to reaffirm the four principles of Malaysian nation-building adopted at the First DAP Congress in Setapak in 1967 and expand their support among Malaysians to win the 15th General Election to begin to fulfil the Malaysian Dream for Malaysia to be a united world-class great nation
I have called on DAP cadres and members at all levels and throughout the country to unite and rally behind the party for Pakatan Harapan to achieve a new high point in the 15th General Election as well as to safeguard the party against external forces which are trying to split and destroy it.
Our challenge is to reaffirm the four principles of Malaysian nation-building adopted at the First DAP Congress in Setapak in 1967 and expand their support among Malaysians to win the 15th General Election to begin to fulfil the Malaysian Dream for Malaysia to an united world-class great nation.
The four Malaysian nation-building principles in accordance with the Malaysian Constitution and the subsequent Rukun Negara adopted at the First DAP Congress at Setapak in 1967 were:
- a firm sense of national unity,. identity and solidarity which can only be established if the principle of racial equality is faithfully observed and implemented in all fields of national life;
- A highly-skilled and educated population through a modern and dynamic policy of education;
- Social and economic discipline in national life through social and fiscal policies to ensure a fairer distribution of the national wealth and a more scrupulous adherence to the principle and practice of social justice; and
- An incorruptible and efficient government administrative machinery.
It is precisely because Malaysia had deviated from these four nation-building principles which was why, despite our potentials and promises, we had trailed behind other nations in the past half a century.
After six decades of Malaysian nationhood, we have failed to develop a national unity, identity and solidarity as in other nations.
When the Prime Minister, Muhyiddin Yassin was the Education Minister at the beginning of the last decade, he launched the Malaysia Education Blueprint 2013-2025 in September 2012 for Malaysia to become a “wonder nation” and make the quantum jump from the bottom third to top third of 2021 PISA (Programme for International Assessment) tests of OECD.
But this had been a dismal failure, for instead of leaping into the top third of the PISA tests, Malaysia’s 2018 PISA results had been worse than the 2015 PISA results in all the three subjects of maths, science and reading and we are still far from the top third among the 80 PISA participating countries.
The four sets of PISA results for Malaysia since 2009 are as follows:
PISA Score (Rank)
|Maths||404 (57)||421 (52)||446 (45)||440 (47)|
|Science||422 (52)||420 (53)||443 (47)||438 (48)|
|Reading||414 (55)||398 (59)||431 (50)||415 (56)|
Would Malaysia students perform better in the fifth 2021 PISA tests – but whatever the outcome, Malaysia is far from the “wonder nation” that Muhyiddin wanted Malaysia to become in four years’ time in 2025.
In 1970, we had a bigger GDP than Singapore and Vietnam;. Since then, the GDP of Malaysia has increased 90 times but that of Vietnam has increased 122 times and Singapore 175 times and today, both Singapore and Vietnam have overtaken Malaysia in having larger GDPs.
On the upliftment of the Malays from poverty and backwardness, I am reminded of writer Mariam Mohtar’s seven questions which she asked the Malays to asked the Malay leaders, viz:
- How come after 60 years, we are still behind the other Malaysians?
- Would it be true that if “affirmative action” is based on need and not on race, there will be more for us poor Malays?
- You keep telling us the Chinese are our enemies; that they steal from us and that if not for you, we would become extinct. How did the Chinese steal from us and how are they going to make us extinct?
- On education, why are even our fellow Malays leaving the national schools and going to Chinese schools? Are they telling you something?
- To our religious leaders, why is the Islam practised in many Islamic countries more liberal and open than ours? Words you forbid the infidels to use are used openly by non-Muslims even in Arabic countries?
- You scold us for being lazy and call us useless – that we cannot walk without a tongkat. Yet you keep pushing the tongkat on us. Why?
- Why do the older generation of Malaysians get on so much better with each other and now do not? Is it the school system?
Mariam’s seven questions are food for thought for Malays and Malaysians.
While in the midst of DAP party elections, we welcome criticisms and debate on the future of the DAP and the nation, we must be aware of external forces which are trying to split and destroy the DAP with lies, falsehoods, half-truths and fake news.
I had said that it were pure lies and falsehoods that I had said that a person who does not know Jawi is not qualified to be a Malaysian or that DAP Secretary-General Lim Guan Eng had declared that he was not a Chinese when he was appointed as Finance Minister.
But to this day, there are attacks on DAP leaders on the social media on these two issues.
I am not prepared to dignify these social media attacks on the DAP leadership by referring to the abuses, invectives and low-class language used – but I am prepared to show these lies, falsehoods, half-truths and fake news to anyone in private.
The perception that was created when the Jawi controversy blew up in 2019 was that the DAP was responsible for introducing the Jawi issue in the Chinese and Tamil primary schools, when in fact, it was the work of the former MCA and MIC deputy education ministers, Datuk Chong sin Woon and P. Kamalanathan who decided in Sept. 21, 2015 on new textbooks for the Chinese and Tamil primary schools from 2017-2022.
If there had been no change of government in the 14th General Election on May 9, 2018, the implementation of the Education Ministry decision on new curriculum decided by the Barisan Nasional in Sept. 2015 would have resulted in the compulsory introduction of Jawi in Chinese and Tamil primary schools.
The DAP was responsible for turning the compulsory introduction of Jawi to optional introduction of Jawi in Chinese and Tamil primary schools.
Yet DAP was blamed for the introduction of Jawi in Chinese and Tamil primary schools. Is this fair and true?
DAP leaders in the 22-month Pakatan Harapan government had been guided by the principle that power must serve the people’s interests and for the nation’s sake and not power for power’s sake.
We must continue to be guided by this principle, that we are in politics to serve the people and the Malaysian Dream and not for our self-advancement or self-glorification.
The challenge for DAP is to reaffirm the four principles of Malaysian nation-building adopted at the First DAP Congress in Setapak in 1967 and to expand its support among Malaysians so as to win the 15th General Election to begin to fulfil the Malaysian Dream for Malaysia to be a united world-class great nation.