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Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak wants Malaysians to be positive and have an open mind in evaluating him and to give him a chance in demonstrating his leadership.

The Prime Minister said he was also committed to understanding the people’s aspiration and would do the best in terms of leadership whether from the aspect of policies, implementation and programmes carried out.

“I only hope the people will adopt an open and positive attitude in evaluating my leadership and give me the chance to demonstrate my leadership … Hopefully, the people will accept my leadership,” he said.

Najib said this when asked by host Ally Iskandar Mohd Mardzi in a special interview programme with the sixth Prime Minister broadcast by TV3 last night.

The Prime Minister said he constantly reminded himself to have his feet on the ground and to be people friendly, firm but considerate to others when discharging his duties.

On his early days into politics he said: “Of course, in the beginning it was a very big shock because I had just returned from abroad from secondary school and university studies. Suddenly, I was in the middle of the political arena without any plans and expectation. It was totally unexpected.

“I had to adapt within a short period, but Alhamdulillah, within a short span of time, I felt I was suited to politics and the constituency in Pekan, (which was) a rural area. I could get close to the kampung people in various situations and I did not feel out of place in such a situation,” he said.

Asked whether there were differences between the time he first led the government and the time his father first became prime minister, he said it was challenging, although the intensity was about the same.

“The intensity could be said to be very challenging because during my late father’s time, he had to face a tense situation after the May 13 (1969) tragedy and the political uncertainties in Perak, Selangor and Penang.

“I too was facing a tense situation because I started in a political situation where the Barisan Nasional lost in five states, and now we have recaptured one. Facing a more aggressive Opposition and a larger number (of Opposition) in Parliament and the world economic crisis,” Najib said.

On the transformation to be introduced, he said the focus on the younger generation who were becoming voters was not an option but a must.

Commenting on how all his actions would be observed in his first 100 days as Prime Minister, Najib said it would be a political honeymoon as mentioned by some people.

“I don’t think there is a 100-day period because of the current intensity. I have to pass two quick tests. One is the formation of a new Cabinet and the other is my maiden speech as PM.

“If both of these are well accepted by the people, I believe they will be more open in accepting my leadership, InsyaAllah,” he said.

On another matter, Najib is expected to have a better idea of how to form the new Cabinet when he gets a chance to meet leaders of BN component parties at a meeting in Putrajaya today.

While the exact reason for the meeting is not known, it is strongly believed that it is likely to centre on the much talked about Cabinet reshuffle.

Najib is expected to announce his Cabinet line-up within a week of taking office last Friday.

Some analysts say that the Cabinet announcement could be as early as Wednesday or Thursday after the three by-elections in Bukit Gantang, Bukit Selambau and Batang Ai are held tomorrow.

BERNAMA