Slightly more than seven months after a disastrous election results in the history of Barisan Nasional Abdullah finally announced his retirement. Despite poking jokes and posing jovial – deep down his heart Abdullah knows he’s been ‘kicked out’ by none other than his own deputy.

Abdullah also made a startling admission but not totally surprising that the country is facing an alarming decline in inter-racial and inter-religious relations under his tenure. Bernama reports:

Abdulah said he would like to see the government and Barisan Nasional renew their commitment towards building a united and harmonious nation.

“Society has seen an alarming decline in inter-racial and inter-religious relations. Various issues have cropped up which threaten to tear the very fabric of Malaysian life.

“We need to tackle these issues head-on, through dialogue; deal with the issues constructively and even-handedly; ensure greater clarity and certainty for the people; and focus on the point that will unite us, rather than the points that divide us.”

In this regard, he said, he would convene a BN Convention early next year as a long-term effort to kick-start and continue towards this initiative.

According to Malaysiakini, when Datuk Seri Abdullah Badawi retires on March 9, 2009 he will become one of the shortest Prime Minister in Malaysia history.