I applaud the 25 prominent Malay dignitaries who came forward to preach moderation for Malaysia.
Today, I read that another 33 Malaysians from different ethnic groups have come forward to voice their concern about the extremist views that have been uttered by various rightist groups.
The country as I see it is facing certain hurdles in its journey towards a developed nation.
The most obvious and dangerous one is of course extremist views have gone largely unchecked, and the perception is UMNO has turned more and more to the right and this does not herald well for the party and the country.
Another hurdle is the slowing economy and rising inflation, but this will not be discussed here at the moment.
So the brave 25 prominent Malays who started the ball rolling must be given credit for voicing out the views of many. Even though they have the comfort in numbers, this is still an act of courage to stand up and urge the country to go back to its roots and Federal Constitution.
The ball is now in the court of the Prime Minister. He has often preached moderation, especially in overseas forum. The position of PM is a very powerful one. He should start exerting himself if he really believe in what he preaches. Please read this old post of mine “Please walk the talk’.
Without PM exerting leadership and taking control and clamping down on the extremist views, whatever is uttered by these prominent Malaysians will not have much effect.
It is up to the PM to act decisively. His about turn in Sedition Act shows the amount of pressure he is under, especially when many of the UMNO’s delegates have turned rightist. The latter is the results of leadership not showing a firm direction for party members. When there is a vacuum, little wonders that many big wits including the Old Horse start to lead the way. The result: the party is now what it is now
His office is powerful. He can overcome the obstacles if he starts exerting his power now. Leader must not be follower of trends. A good leader must be able to buck the trend and turn opinion around.
I am hoping that PM will start doing that, and walk his talk. The country needs that. As i see it, he is the only one AT THE MOMENT with the stature and power to stand up and clamp down on the extremists, and only with him doing that, the country can go back to its moderate way again.