Selangor Journal
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim (centre) representing the nation’s first prime minister Tunku Abdul Rahman, holds up the Keris Sapukal during the 68th Anniversary of the Independence Declaration of the Federation of Malaya celebration at the Proclamation of Independence Memorial in Banda Hilir, on February 20, 2024. Keris Sapukal is the original instrument Tunku carried upon him when declaring independence in 1957. — Picture by BERNAMA

Today’s leaders must not be avaricious, arrogant like colonists — PM

MELAKA, Feb 20 — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim advised today’s leaders against being avaricious and arrogant like the officers of the countries that once colonised this nation.

Current leaders must not behave like that if they are sincere about wanting to build Malaysia to be a better place.

“We know that we would not be here enjoying the benefits of independence if not for the services of the great figures of the past who were willing to pledge their lives and property to achieve independence for our nation.

“This is also a reminder to the leaders who carry the trust now to learn from their (previous leaders’) good and positive elements and characteristics and not be dragged by the practices of avaricious and arrogance of colonial officials,” he said.

Anwar was speaking at the 68th Anniversary of the Independence Declaration of the Federation of Malaya celebration at the Proclamation of Independence Memorial in Banda Hilir tonight.

Also present were the Yang Dipertua Negeri of Melaka Tun Mohd Ali Mohd Rustam, Melaka Chief Minister Datuk Seri Ab Rauf Yusoh, as well as Tourism, Arts, and Culture Minister Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing.

The Prime Minister said that to remember the services of former leaders, the next generation should strive to elevate the dignity of the country to a higher level.

“The next generation must strive as best possible to raise the dignity of the country, develop the economy, continue the quality of education and health, (and) attract tourists and industries (to invest) so the people can live more comfortably.

“And this is our commitment at a time that we feel moved and touched by our conscience because we are a generation that remembers deeds,” he said.

Anwar added that while the country’s Constitution is seen to give privileges to the Malays, the country’s highest law does not exclude other races who fought for the country’s independence together.

“That is why the leaders at that time, when drafting the Constitution, stipulated the position of the Malay language, Islam (as) the Federal religion, the rights of privileges of Malays and the sovereignty of the Malay Rulers, but never was it intended to belittle the rights of others, degrading others, or insulting them (non-Malays).

“Because they are recognised as legitimate citizens who jointly fought for independence… this is an important lesson for our country,” he said.

— Bernama

 

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