Monday, April 09, 2007

Malaysia is for all

We must remain united

All citizens regardless of their race and religion should rally behind the Raja Muda of Perak Raja Nazrin Shah’s call that this country belongs to all. No particular community should claim exclusive rights to the ownership of the country and its future.

We have come a long way since independence in building our nation through the comradeship among the various ethnic groups. We fought together side by side for independence and the communist insurgency and it was the unity among the races that brought us success in these two major battles.

Together we toiled, in the years that followed, to develop our nation from a poor developing nation to a highly developing one and on the brink of achieving our Vision 2020 to make our nation a developed state.All citizens contributed immensely to bring the nation to whare it is today,respected in the international arena.

All these years, we all lived, worked, played, ate, celebrated our various festivities and even prayed together. Little did our racial and religious differences could do to divide us. We considered ourselves first as Malaysians only then as Malays, Chinese or Indians.

This common brotherhood which we had cherished is being threatened today. We are becoming increasingly more divided by race and religion. There is growing suspicion of one another. Our children are segregated in schools for various reasons and they hardly have friends of other races.

It is a strange phenomenon that when we were poor we were united in our struggle against national enemies.Today when we are wealthy we seem to fight among ourselves to the advantage of our competitors from the outside.If this is allowed to continue,all citizens regardless of ethnicity,would be the final losers.

Certain communities feel they are being neglected and denied opportunities to participate in the development on the nation. The minority groups feel they are slowly losing their voices and their rights as guaranteed by the Federal Constitution. These changes are making them lose their sense of belonging and patriotism to the nation which they thought was theirs.

Raja Nazrin’s call is very timely. It may still be not too late to act. Our leaders should take bold steps to reverse these changes that are taking place in our country without delay. There is an urgent need to develop a sense of belonging to the nation among all citizens by providing all their rightful dues as enshrined in the Federal Constitution.

Dr.Chris Anthony

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