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Make next 12 months a better economic, political, educational and social year

Chinese New Year Message

by Lim Kit Siang  

, Friday):

The past 12 months have not been a good year, whether economically, politically, educationally or socially.

In fact, Malaysia seems to get further and further from our nation-building moorings agreed by our  forefathers of all communities  in the social contract on the attainment of independence in 1957 that Malaya and then Malaysia shall forever be a multi-racial, democratic and secular nation, with Islam as the official religion but not an Islamic state.

This should be a sober point to ponder while Malaysians celebrate the Chinese New Year of the Dog – how at the mid-point of the 30-year Vision 2020 to become a fully developed nation with the emergence of a Bangsa Malaysia, the goal seems as distant as ever.

The five-year Ninth Malaysia Plan 2006-2010 will be debated and approved  by Parliament in April. Will it launch the country into greater national unity and cohesion with enhanced  international competitiveness or the reverse, as many signs are pointing in that direction? 

Will the next 12 months see the Prime Minister shake off his  two-year inertia and lethargy to make full use of the unprecedented  92% landslide electoral  victory in March 2004 to downsize the  jumbo Cabinet with “towering Ministers”,  end the stalemate of “one man versus the system” with institutional  reforms, curb corruption and put in place the conditions for a Malaysia which can pride itself as having  both  “First-World Infrastructure, First-World Mentality”?

If such  prospects are not bright, are Malaysians prepared to  give serious thought how  to make the new year most  meaningful by banding together to effect such changes?

Happy Chinese New Year but think of these challenges to our  nation.



*  Lim Kit Siang, Parliamentary Opposition Leader, MP for Ipoh Timur & DAP Central Policy and Strategic Planning Commission Chairman

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