‘WE SHOW 1MALAYSIA SPIRIT’
Umno at the forefront of cross-cultural communication, says Zahid
CROSS-CULTURAL communication among Malaysians will nurture mutual understanding among all races, Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi said.
He said it would also strengthen ties in a plural society.
“We know that there are sentiments played by certain quarters to divide us. The divide-andrule policy during the colonial era must be stopped to safeguard harmony among Malaysians.
“After 60 years of Independence, such a divide should not have taken place. Umno, as the backbone of Barisan Nasional, has always been at the forefront of cross-cultural communication.
Opening the Tapah Umno division delegates’ meeting, the Umno vice-president cited the Tapah constituency as a good example of BN’s concept of powersharing — MIC’s Datuk M. Saravanan is Tapah member of parliament, Chenderiang assemblyman is MCA’s Datuk Dr Mah Han Soon and Umno’s Datuk Samsudin Abu Hassan is Ayer Kuning assemblyman.
“The 1Malaysia spirit is clearly shown here where the component parties work closely together and they have statistics to back their achievements.
“Tapah received more votes when BN suffered a decrease in majority (of votes in the general elections) at some constituencies in Perak.
“In 2008, the constituency received a majority of 3,020 votes and the number had increased to 7,927 in the last general election.
“If the elected representatives and party machinery work hard in correcting perceptions, national issues will not be a main factor that could lead to vote swing,” Zahid said.
He said Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak’s leadership focused on safeguarding the people’s wellbeing, regardless of background or political beliefs.
“Despite reduced Chinese support, we remain steadfast in providing our services to all as it is our responsibility.
“Party leaders must have more engagements with the Chinese community, including non-governmental organisations and clans’ associations.”
Zahid also said Malaysians should embrace their roots.
“I am proud to admit that I am a ‘Jawa’ (of Javanese descent). My father was born in Indonesia and my mother was born in Malaysia.
“However, some people were being sensitive when I merely stated a fact of someone’s (lineage) background,” he said, in a veiled response to reactions towards his recent comments on former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s parentage.
Umno vice-president Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi opening the Tapah Umno division delegates’ meeting yesterday. With him is Tapah Umno division chief Datuk Samsudin Abu Hassan (second from right).