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Sultan Sharafuddin: ‘No one race could have brought Malaysia to what it is today’
The Sultan said he wanted Malaysians to understand that the country’s independence was achieved through the unity of all the major races.
The Sultan of Selangor, HRH Sultan Sharafuddin Idris Shah came out strong on issues that matters most to Malaysians on the near completion of 50 years of Independence – corruption, crime, race, religion, education and the brain drain, the environment and of course politics.
Excerpts from an interview:
On Race: His Royal Highness pointedly declared, “No one race could have brought Malaysia to what it is today” Clearly he was pushing forward a Bangsa Malaysia initiative. He insisted that multi-racialism must be nurtured in school and that everyone has a right to feel as Malaysians.
On Religion: The Sultan of Selangor urged his subjects to respect other religions, the way others respect Islam, the State Religion. “I want Muslims to respect the religions practised by other Malaysians.” He also expected non-Muslims to reciprocate similar respect towards Islam. He earlier expressed his unhappiness on politicians, of late, harping on race and religion.
On Corruption: Describing corruption as cancerous cells, he urged that if corruption cannot be wiped out, it should be checked effectively. He further lamented the snail-paced delivery system of the state’s government agencies, whose modus operandi invariably and inevitably encouraged bribery and corruption and loss of investments to the state.
On Crime: He advised a depleted police force to engage the people in its fight against crime. He lamented the stigma that Selangor has the highest crime rate in the country. He had even to make this simple suggestion to have more CCTVs in crime-prone places.
On Education and the Brain-Drain: His Excellency decried the country’s tidak apa attitude to stem the continuous out-flow of the country’s top brains and resourceful human capital.
On the Environment: In a veiled message to those responsible for denuding the green belt in the vicinity of the Palace, the Sultan commended tree planting efforts in Bukit Jelutong and has himself ordered the planting of 5,000 trees in all grounds of the palaces.
On Politics: His Royal Highness forbade the politicising of the Merdeka Celebrations. He took the opportunity to make this warning: “No politicians or group should attempt to gain popularity by stirring up such issues, as Malaysian is a multi-racial country. This country belongs to all Malaysians.”
To further drive home his initiatives, His Royal Highness created a landmark precedent that requiring all palaces of the Selangor royal house on 27 August 2007 to hoist the National Flag, instead of the State flag. This edict encapsulates his take on unity under the Malaysian Sun.
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