posted by din merican in Bangkok, Thailand
The Malaysian Insider
September 20, 2009
Najib appeals for National Unity
Datuk Seri Najib Razak appealed to Muslims and Malaysians to strengthen unity and discard suspicions among each other in his first Hari Raya Aidil Fitri message as prime minister while attacking “hate-mongers” for sowing ungratefulness among the people.
“Let’s take advantage of festive days such as this to restore and repair cold and cracked relations between Muslims and also between Malaysians,” Najib said in the message delivered over television last night and released by state news agency Bernama.
The country’s sixth Prime Minister has seen his 1 Malaysia concept reduced to just a slogan since taking over on April 3 as racial tensions between various communities rose when a group of Malays dragged a cow head to the Selangor state secretariat to protest the relocation of a Hindu temple.
The UMNO President has also seen his party members accuse the Chinese of not supporting it in a string of by-election defeats since Election 2008. In his message, the Prime Minister asked Malaysians to repair the current bridges of communications and to build new bridges of understanding. “Break the current fortresses of suspicions, hate and apathy for a better future for our children,” Najib said.
He also said the Muslims in Malaysia must carry the flame of unity and progress as the majority population in the country, adding they not only have rights but more importantly responsibilities that must be carried out.
The son of the country’s second Prime Minister Tun Abdul Razak Hussein also encouraged the tradition of open houses, saying not only should the keep their house doors open but also the “doors of the heart” to all, including non-Muslims.“The concept of open houses practised until now is the manifestation to the 1 Malaysia concept. Continue this wonderful tradition as we are all one big family, the 1 Malaysia Family,” he stressed.
Najib said the Muslims in Malaysia have a lot to be grateful to stay in an independent country that is peaceful during a time when a majority of Muslims lead a miserable life due to politics, economics and war. He said Malaysia’s situation did not happen overnight but due to the “sacrifice of blood, sweat and tears of our fathers”, freedom fighters and the security forces.
He also said despite being a multiracial nation, Malaysia has managed the situation to be a catalyst for unity and progress.
“Unfortunately, there are hate mongers who try to deny this reality. They try to inculcate teachings of ungratefulness in the people to achieve their narrow aims.They claim that all governments in the world are the same, that peace, security and progress can be achieved without planning, strong effort and strict monitoring,” the Prime Minister said. He questioned their allegations, saying there was still differences between developed and undeveloped countries apart from starvation and ethnic killings.