Bismillahirrahmanirrahim Assalamualaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh, Salam Sejahtera dan Salam 1Malaysia. [ Here – to watch Najib speech video ]
Yi ge Malaysia [Chinese],…
Oray Malaysia [Tamil],…
Ndi Malaysia [Bidayuh],… Ji Malaysia [Orang Ulu],…
Ise’ Malaysia [Kadazan & Dusun],…
Saumi Malaysia [Murut],…
Or Sato Malaysia by the Iban people
YAB Tan Sri Muhyiddin Hj. Mohd Yassin Deputy Chairman Barisan Nasional Vice Chairmen of Barisan Nasional Members of Barisan Nasional Supreme Council Members of Supreme Councils of Barisan Nasional component parties Ministers Deputy Ministers Honorable Members of Parliament Presidents and representatives from Friends of Barisan Nasional, KIMMA, IPF, Makkal Sakti and MIUP Delegates from the 13 component parties of Barisan Nasional Observers Media representatives
Ladies & Gentlemen,
1.First of all, let us together give unreserved thanks because we are able to gather here this morning at the lovely Dewan San Choon, with full of togetherness, tremendous commitment and in a harmonious atmosphere.
2.It is without doubt that at this convention today, we demonstrate to the world that as Malaysian citizens, we stand united, indivisible with one purpose, that, of building a better future. What is important for us, as we come various races, religions and cultures, we are able to gather in a big way without any fear, worry or being despondent in terms of our personal safety.
3.We have proven wrong the prophets of doom and gloom who had always been predicting and forecasting that Malaysia will be destroyed because of our multi-ethnicity.
4. Indeed, whatever our skin colour, whatever our religious beliefs, whatever our socio-economic position and wherever we are, we remain united under the umbrella of 1Malaysia.
5.It is clear that Malaysia has been blessed with an abundance of peace for us to come this far. In many other countries with multi-ethnic societies in this world, they had been pockmarked with crisis and conflict, and the road taken by Malaysia is indeed special. We have pioneered a long journey and had managed our diversity successfully.
Ladies & Gentlemen,
6.Our greatest achievement had been our ability to turn the challenges of our diversity or “a potential Achilles heel” to one of “competitive advantage”. It is here that whether we are aware or not, it is not a small or ordinary achievement, but on the other hand, it is a very significant or monumental achievement in the history of the making of Malaysia.
7.In short, this success is impressive because we did not take the easy road by adhering to the ‘melting pot’ approach in nation building, where the existing differences need to be forcibly sacrificed and a single identity be created. We did not attempt to wipe out any culture nor try to change the origins of anyone. Even up till today, everyone is free to strengthen one’s identity.
8.For example, if one’s name is Samy Vellu, there is no need to change to Suhaimi or Sazali. If it is Chua Soi Lek, there is no necessity to change it to Salleh, So’ud or Ayoub, if it is John Ambrose, John Ambrose it will be, no need to change to Johan Ambrose. Even the Orang Asli are free to continue with their own identity. As a matter of fact, we should be proud that we are the only nation in the world that allows the establishment of national schools that continue with the usage of the mother tongue as the medium of instruction.
9.This clearly shows that Malaysian citizens are not only tolerant towards multi-ethnicity but had also moved a step forward to celebrate this diversity. We had chosen a path that is fair and equitable by applying the integration approach where the unique differences are combined in one big family, which is always mutually reinforcing and supporting one another, and not about destroying the identities of any one race. Ladies & Gentlemen,
10. After our last convention in 1995, we are gathered here this morning where representatives from 13 component parties from all 13 states and the federal territories, drawn from various races, are seated together with one determination, oneness of heart and oneness of objective to ensure that the well-being of the people is given priority.
11. In addition, the convention this time is held at Wisma MCA, as a sign that we are equal partners to serve the people. Indeed, we are committed partners in our endeavour to serve the Malaysian people.
12. It is said that we stand on the shoulders of giants, our forefathers had been the pioneers. They had pioneered the ultimate legacy, in this respect, a mechanism in power sharing and political cooperation among the various races which had proven to be very effective, very practical and able to stand the test of time.
13. It is indeed that our predecessors had been visionary political geniuses. They had succeeded in overcoming the deception and trickery of the British colonialists with their divide and rule policy. Whether we are aware or not, throughout the colonial rule, our people had been subtly divided in accordance to race by the places we lived in, the type of work we did and our education. The objective of the colonialists was that ultimately all races would have to depend on them as the so-called impartial referee.
14. As a result, at that time, leaders such as the late Dato’ Onn (Jaffar) were aware of this fact and tried to overcome that by trying to open Umno’s membership to various races for a start, and later through Parti Kemerdekaan Tanah Melayu or the IMP led by him, but this too failed.
15. Over time, it was realised that the people were not ready to accept a party with various races, but the leaders still recognised that this was the way forward to attain independence and build a better future, and they then forged a new approach in terms of political cooperation and power sharing through the Alliance Party concept, which was very unique and took into account the environment and realities of that time.
Ladies & Gentlemen,
16. If we were to re-visit the events of the past, the seeds of the Alliance’s establishment was through the cooperation of Umno and MCA in the Kuala Lumpur Municipal Elections in 1952. The alliance of the two parties had succeeded in their winning nine of the 12 seats contested. This cooperation was expanded to the national level through the participation of MIC in 1954 to face the Federal Legislative Election in the following year.
17. The political cooperation and power sharing approach of the various races through the three parties Umno, MCA and MIC was well-received by the people when the Alliance Party won 51 of the 52 seats in the federal election of 1955.
18. Later, the concept and membership of the Alliance Party was improved upon after the May 13 tragedy when its doors were opened to parties outside of it. There were even parties that were previously in the Opposition and had recognised and chosen the path towards national integration.
19. This was because they firmly believed that the future of the nation can only be safeguarded by Barisan Nasional. Later, Barisan Nasional also expanded its membership to include parties from Sabah and Sarawak, and this established a new era in terms of national integration when Barisan Nasional became the political bridge to reach out far across the South China Sea.
Ladies & Gentlemen,
20. When comparing the General Election of 2008, Barisan Nasional which had been said to be threatened with a gloomy future, Praise be to God, now we are seeing that it is recovering its strength by the day. This can be seen from Barisan Nasional regaining the Hulu Selangor parliamentary seat while the Galas state assembly seat saw big wins. Along with this, the success in retaining the Batu Sapi parliamentary seat with almost double the majority showed that the people’s support towards us has returned.
21. I would like to congratulate all those who had helped us attain those sweet victories in the by-elections. It is clear that victory after victory of all those concerned reflected all our success. The Iban have a famous saying “Agi idup agi ngelaban” If we are still alive, we will continue to strive. The Bajaus in Sabah have this saying, “Mangan niak mangan, asal kurung, kurung”. Its meaning is that whether we have food or not is immaterial, it is important that we still live together. Certainly, if we go by that kind of spirit, whether in good times or otherwise, happy or sad times, we must be together in the interest of Barisan Nasional.
Ladies & Gentlemen,
22. It is indeed true and often said that politics is full of changing perceptions and a game of numbers. As such, things will not happen by themselves. Actually, in politics, it is not good enough just to have positive perception but also true belief by the people towards Barisan Nasional and this will need to be done and nurtured through hard work and real commitment.
23. Therefore, I would like to always remind that our early successes need to lay the foundation for more impressive victories in time to come. In other words, let us not let our guard down or be easily stunned. The multiplying factor for Barisan Nasional to continue to lead in the administration of the country and states in the country is for each component party to be strengthened.
24. It is because of that that in the aftermath of the 2008 General Election, while I was officiating at the joint assemblies of Wanita Umno, Umno Youth and Puteri Umno in that year, I had firmly reminded that Umno needed to change or risk being toppled. I had sounded the clarion call because I recognised the four ailments that would afflict parties that had been in power for long.
25. The four ailments are delusion, amnesia, inertia and arrogance. As a matter of fact, parties that had been in power for long rarely became introspective of their own weaknesses.