‘Reject rhetoric that destroys unity’

This article first appeared in The Edge Financial Daily, on August 16, 2019.
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KUALA LUMPUR: Top Pakatan Harapan leaders have called on Malaysians to reject rhetoric that destroys national unity, and to always cultivate unity and enhance mutual understanding to maintain the country’s peace and harmony.

“We must set aside rhetoric that destroys unity. We need to end polemics that aim to destroy the country. We need to reject politics that only gives importance to small groups and are not in the interests of the general public,” the leaders said in a joint statement yesterday.

The statement was issued by PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia president Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin, DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng and Parti Amanah Negara president Mohamad Sabu.

They noted that various issues are currently being discussed by the public, from economic challenges to polarising issues like racial and religious views, the introduction of khat calligraphy in the national education system and developmental issues in general, which show that Malaysians are clearly more ready to express their thoughts via social media or mainstream media.

As the nation celebrates its 62nd Independence Day and 56th Malaysia Day this year, they urged the people to take the opportunity to reflect on the country’s successes as well as the challenges that still need to be met to build a clean, just and successful nation.

“What Malaysians enjoy today will surely continue to be enjoyed as long as its people remain united, strengthen their ties, and uphold the constitution and the rule of law. All Malaysians, regardless of position or background, have to always cultivate unity and enhance mutual understanding,” they said.

Malaysians, the statement said, must continue to believe nation-building requires strong commitment, sincere intentions, a high level of trust in the community and a clear vision of elevating the people’s dignity.

Malaysia, a multicultural nation, greatly needs harmony among its people, who come from various ethnicities, religions and cultures, they said, adding that this diversity must be maintained and respected by everyone.

“We believe all Malaysians love peace and harmony to continue to enjoy living together in a peaceful environment. Hence, let us answer Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s call to double our efforts to ensure this beloved country of ours remains a prosperous and respected nation,” they said.