Rukun Negara: Make our National Ideology the Preamble to our Constitution

October 4, 2016

Rukunegara: Make our National Ideology the Preamble to our Constitution

By G25


G25, a group of moderate Malaysians concerned about peace and national unity among the various races, issues this public statement to support the suggestion by Dr Chandra Muzaffar that the Rukun Negara be made the preamble to the Malaysian Constitution. The Rukun Negara is the national ideology for creating a united and prosperous country and it is, therefore, appropriate that it be elevated to be the preamble to the Constitution, which is the supreme law in our parliamentary democracy.

Dr Chandra’s suggestion is timely in view of the current state of national unity which is still fragile despite the country achieving remarkable progress in its 60 years of economic development. While in terms of income and key social indicators Malaysia is fast approaching the status of a developed country, all these impressive statistics will have little meaning if we continue to be a divided nation. Indeed, unless we resolve the socio-political issues of race and religion that continue to cause friction among the population, and which often create barriers in formulating strong policies for growth, quality education, talent development, meritocracy, innovation and creativity, there will always be doubt about the sustainability of our development process and our progress towards a truly united nation.

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It is worthwhile to remind Malaysians that when the government launched the Second Malaysia Plan (1971-1975) – the first five-year plan to incorporate the objectives of the New Economic Policy in the development programme – the plan document stated in paragraph 7 of Chapter 1 that “these objectives will be guided by the principles of the Rukun Negara, proclaimed on 31st August 1970.” We would like to quote from paragraph 10 of the plan document for further clarification:

“10. The quest for a national identity and unity is common to many countries, especially new and developing countries. This search for national identity and unity involves the whole range of economic, social and political activities: the formulation of education policies designed to encourage common values and loyalties among all communities and in all regions; the cultivation of a sense of dedication to the nation through services of all kinds; the careful development of national language and literature, of art and music; the emergence of truly national symbols and institutions based on the cultures and traditions of the society. The basic point is emphasised in the Rukun Negara ‘…from these diverse elements of our population, we are dedicated to the achievement of a united nation in which loyalty and dedication to the nation shall over- ride all other loyalties’. ”

The plan document was adopted by Parliament in April 1971 and marked the start of an ambitious Outline Perspective Plan 1970-1990 under the New Economic Policy to develop the country with growth and distribution to eliminate poverty and reduce the racial imbalances in the country. Although much of these social engineering objectives have been achieved, national unity remains fragile.

G25 concurs with Dr Chandra that by making the Rukun Negara the preamble to the Federal Constitution, it will confer upon the national ideology the status of law that will guide the courts and other institutions of justice in making fair and just decisions on issues of race and religion that threaten to adversely affect racial harmony and national unity. By giving constitutional status to the national ideology, policy makers, administrators, civil servants, teachers and law enforcement authorities can refer to it for guidance in making the right decisions that will contribute towards national unity.

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Stop these Racists from destroying Malaysia

Civil society, human rights activists and the public can refer to the Rukun Negara and cite its fundamental principles in seeking fairness and justice in the social and economic policies of the government and in the implementation of the civil and religious laws.

In these ways, the Rukun Negara will become the overriding philosophy by which Malaysia develops into a truly united country with mutual respect for our diversity and multiculturalism.

We appeal to all civil society organisations and the government to give serious attention to the suggestion by Dr Chandra Muzaffar.

Watch this with thanks to Dr Phua:

9 thoughts on “Rukun Negara: Make our National Ideology the Preamble to our Constitution

  1. Well, as long as Najib is in power, the Rukun or whatever you may wish to call it, will be treated as a big joke. He is the real cause of rising ultra Malay nationalism (a more elegant label for Malay racism). He will do everything to stay in power and some people are going to be hurt or die if there are clashes between citizens and UMNO agents. It is good that the IGP is tough on the Red Shirts. I hope the Bersih Yellows will continue to show restraint and respect the law.–Din Merican

  2. The future belongs to the youth of Malaysia. What do they have to say? Most of us in the G25 generation have only a decade, or may be even less, left. Over to the youth. I am certain that Dato’ Din will welcome your comments. Thank you.

  3. Dato’ Din ,
    This proposal by the esteemed Dr Chandra Muzaffar looks attractive, BUT it must be first adopted by both Houses of Parliament , and if passed, to jointly with the Government , put in a kind of Motion or Application to the Highest Court with full Corum , and such Preamble then becomes part of the Constitution (or to be read within the Context of the Constitution ) –

    Just talking of the process , and the usual stuff of a Referendum nation-wide is dispensed with , BUT the Legal experts are in the AG’s Chambers…. ( merely an opinion , with thanks )

  4. So long as Najib is in power, EVERYTHING, the law, the police, judiciary and even the economics and infrastructure is a joke, fake. But even if Najib is out of power, there remain Hadi’s PAS which must also go with him. Why the separate talk of Najib and Hadi’s PAS among Malay intellectuals I do not get it..Its a twin problem that goes together. They are two sides of the same coin. Najib cannot tell the difference between his personal agenda and the country, Hadi’s PAS cannot tell the difference between playing God and being man, a much worst proposition. Removing Najib without Hadi’s PAS will only create a worst monster.

  5. I thought 1Yayasan is funded by MO1’s 1Malaysia. If it is still the case, ask MO1. MO1 seems to rule Dewan Negara. Changing constitution is a mere stroke of the pen. Why bother to ask? Changing the constitution, I dare not dream. What I think more doable is to beg 1Yayasan to put up the Reid Commission and Cobbald Commission in their entirety on its’ website.

  6. I am forgetful. Fortunately, PM Najib still has the link mentioned below. Ask PM Najib, Tun Muzaffar. Why bother to ask anyone else? Reid Commission and Cobbald Commission is way before my time. Please show us the original document in its’ entirety to remind us the spirit in which the nation was borned.
    Yesterday, I was happy to hear that Yayasan 1Malaysia and its Board of Trustees were officially presented to the media. I was invited to become the patron of the Yayasan, an honour I am proud to accept.

  7. ” ….Changing Constitution is a mere stroke of the pen…..” , its treating the Sacred document with Levity ! ( propose , even Bar Council of Malaysia should be made a party , in the proposal by Dr. Chandra Muzaffar ) –

    The Constitution is not an ordinary document, its the Supreme Document which constituted ” Malaysia ” (or created Malaysia in the Fifties ) – There were Signitories to this sacred Execution, and most are no longer here. In a legal sense , it represents a ” Contract ” document ( the Supreme Contract for that matter ) –

    That’s the principal reason as to why the Constitution is socrossanct , and Constitution cannot be changed, even as much as a full-stop or comma , without due process of the Refferendum – ( this happened in the formation of Malaysia, when some of the Sarawkians & Sabahans , DECLINED the move , & so a Refferendum was called ….the rest is history ) –

    No, not even the slightest amendment can be done without the refferendum , and Leaders in politics should not think that it can be done with the flip of their two fingers….. ( both the Constitution & Malaysia are Synonymous …. because it was the Land that was transffered .)

  8. As if a preamble will stop all the constitutional chopping and changing, and manipulation. Chandra is champion at running with the foxes and hunting with the hounds. An opportunist who is always trying to get cheap publicity. Very good at ampu bodeking his masters. Too bad the G25 fell or it.

  9. @Abnizar .. In spirit, I definitely agree with you. Sweet Jesus no slightest change was ever made to the Good book.

    But, for man-made document, sometimes I wish that was the case. All I know, I have reached my half life. I have not seen a single change in the Malaysian constitution that I like. I just don’t know if we recall why the constitution kept on changing. 57 of them. The last took place in 2009. This preamble, I like. But, it meant nothing. Nonetheless, I know nothing.

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