Malaysia's Former Minister of Defence, Hishammuddin Hussein, Declares That His Country Deserves Better
KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia, Oct. 18, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- Mr. Hishammuddin Hussein, the former Defence Minister of Malaysia, has called on his countrymen to work towards uniting all races and working towards the nation's progress.
In a letter issued to the Malaysian media, Mr Hussein said: "The past few weeks have witnessed talks on unity from across political lines. Whether it is in terms of political cooperation, or Malay Unity - I have always been consistent, I support any effort to unite Malaysians at any level. Whether it begins at the societal level, or between the Malays first, we must realise that this effort has been undertaken since before our days of Independence," adding, "In 1946, my grandfather Dato Onn Ja'afar convened a meeting of more than 40 Malay organisations, uniting the Malays to oppose the British Empire and the formation of the Malayan Union. While this led to the founding of the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO), he realized an independent Malaysia will not be able to succeed only based on Malay Unity. This led to his resignation from UMNO in 1951 because they rejected his proposal to open UMNO's membership to all races."
The former Defence Minister warned: "Though not exactly, history is repeating itself. Whether it was through Muafakat Nasional or by the Kongres Maruah Melayu – the central focus of these events may be seeds that have been planted to grow into a larger theme of unity, which involves the other races that make up our multiracial nation."
He added: "I know, and it is expected, that the racial rhetoric surrounding these events have led to the other races feeling sidelined and being attacked, shadowing any good intention these events may have aimed to achieve. This threatens to unravel the fragility of our society. Instead, we should focus our attention on the struggle and determination of the leaders to unite the Malays, who represent the majority of our population. Non-Malays, however, must not be worried, as we understand that Malay unity cannot come at the expense of the unity of all Malaysians, it is purely the foundation of a larger, all-encompassing effort to unite our divided country."