Friday, May 10, 2013

Economic Modernisation is the Key to National Reconciliation

When 85 per cent of Malaysia's eligible voters took to the polls last weekend, a large majority will have made their decision based on our enviable national trajectory – specifically the state of our economy.
Yet, stoked by the Opposition's posturing, there is undeniably a nationwide feeling of division – something that Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has vowed will be the focus of his second term in office.
Najib explained this week to the Wall Street Journal that his strategy will in part rest on his trillion-ringgit modernisation programme. He believes that Malaysia's pragmatic population will get behind it because they know it is right for the country.
The plan is to accelerate the RM1.32 trillion Economic Transformation Programme built on both public and private spending, in an effort to further bolster our competitive position amongst neighbouring countries.
With a high achieving economy, Najib feels that any societal divisions can be easier contained, despite the best efforts of a handful of individuals to disrupt this.
"We need to reach out to others. That's why I spoke about national reconciliation and moderation after the election win," Najib told the WSJ.
Unfortunately, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim had the opposite in mind, continuing in his efforts to cause division through protests and rallies.
However, Malaysians in their droves, from all sides of the political spectrum, took to social networks such as Facebook and Twitter to express their displeasure of the bickering and divisive brand of politics that Anwar and Co. are preaching.
"reconciliation [sic] and improved race relations should be No. 1 agenda," tweeted @nbnaturee.
"Malaysians unite under Jalur Gemilang. Respect each other and live happily together," wrote @Irfantastico.
Even DAP's Lim Kit Siang, who triumphed in Johor on Sunday, agreed with Najib's target for reformation, leaving his coalition colleague Anwar Ibrahim even further out of the fold.
"It must comprise leaders who support Najib's signature 1Malaysia of putting Malaysians first above race or religion," LKS said, referring to the new cabinet.
While Najib sets out on his continued campaign of growth, reconciliation and reform, Anwar cuts a lonely figure calling for disruption. It is up to the Malaysian people not to let him achieve that goal.

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