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Let’s keep the nation afloat

 | September 15, 2012

Economic expansion and improved well being of the people should take precedent over rallies and street demonstration.


By Dr Chua Soi Lek

This is the third year that we are celebrating Malaysia Day since it was accorded recognition and declared a public holiday. It is a day of great significance, which traces back the struggles of the country which had progressed from an agricultural based economy to that of a highly industrialised nation.

The more than five decades of perseverance, sweat and toil has come to fruition. What we have sowed all these years is now bearing the fruits of success with increasing foreign investment inflows, higher per capita income, better health care, better public transport, better infrastructure and even longer life expectancy.

The quality of life for all Malaysians has improved by many folds and this is the result of a passionate government that is action oriented and result-driven. I firmly believe that the people want the prevailing goodness to be continued and likewise the people should reciprocate in tandem with the feel good factor.

Economic expansion and improved well being of the people should take precedent over rallies and street demonstration. We do not want such activities to be a common feature in Malaysia’s political calendar.

It will be to Malaysia’s disadvantage. Neither will it serve any purpose once our country’s image is tarnished if it is dubbed as a city of demonstration instead of city of economic transformation. We will only be heading towards a disastrous situation if we are to nurture such a culture among us. It will do no good to anyone.

Good economic growth

Just recently, the Central Bank announced a 5.4% growth in economic activities between April and June, spurred by investments in both private and public sector spending. While the export markets in Europe are languishing, Malaysia has been doing well with the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development ranking the country as a top host country for Foreign Direct Investments in 2011-2013.

Our per capita income has increased from US$6,700 (RM20,770) in 2009 to US$9,700 (RM30,700) at the end of last year. Even the Financial Times described Malaysia’s economy as enjoying a gravity-defying boom that is confounding sceptics.

While we bask in those achievements built upon trust and hard work, there are also quarters which are out to destroy all those. While the Barisan government sees Sept 16 as a date of unification of east and west Malaysia as one, someone from the opposition sees it as an opportunity to break up the nation by trying to grab power in 2008.

Many of us may have forgotten that he sent top leaders to Taiwan to convince several BN MPs on a study tour there to cross over to Pakatan. However this opposition leader failed to topple the government when the MPs stood firm and loyal with Barisan Nasional.

Malaysia should remain intact always and not be swayed by quarters who are out to dismantle the cohesive strength that has been an integral part of us. We are in the same ship. If the ship springs a leak, we all drown, so we must keep the boat afloat.

Likewise we have to protect the sovereignty of our country. The day when Malaysia triumphs is when we can see eye to eye on commonalities as strength without our skin colour taking precedent over anything else.

The writer is the MCA president


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