As Malaysians prepare to mark the 52nd Merdeka anniversary, allow me to stress once again the fundamentals that have brought us together, the principles of Rukun Negara.
Rukun Negara, formulated in 1970, sets out to achieve a minimum consensus with regard to national aspirations among the various communities regardless of their geographical location or ethnic character.
The five tenets of Rukun Negara- belief in god, loyalty to king and god, upholding of constitution, rule of law, and good social behaviour and morality-have formed the principles of our nationhood and these can be instilled in our younger generation, the future leaders of the country.
Rukun Negara is a shared vision for national unity. Its principles should always be upheld and practised.
Many people take unity for granted.
This is not a healthy development, for in a multicultural, multireligious and multiracial country like Malaysia, continuous efforts must be made by all Malaysians to nurture and reinforce unity.
Malaysians should start accepting each other as Malaysians regardless of their race and religion and should not be preoccupied with ethnic origin.
Being Malaysian does not make anyone less Malay, Chinese, Indian, Kadazan or Iban. People should be proud to identify themselves first and last as a Malaysian.
All plans for the nation’s economic growth and all measures to address the country’s social imbalances will be meaningful only if they are geared towards national unity.
Programmes of actions for Malaysian of all races should continue to aim at nurturing and strengthening the spirit of love and loyalty for the country.
Malaysian cannot run away from the reality that to attain a cohesive and united Malaysia, they need to be against any racial prejudice of any elements through any means of ways. We should start by thinking; all of us are brothers and sisters, to speak by one voice to eliminate any negative influences of racism from invading our Malaysia as every Malaysian irrespective of race has a rightful place under the Malaysia sun.
The creation and sustenance of national unity must be given the highest priority. Major policy issues and development projects must be studied to ensure that they benefit the nation in terms of forging unity.
Let us all be committed to promote a real, not a political rhetoric, of Malaysian unity, based on justice and fair play for all irrespective of race, colour or creed.