Saturday, September 01, 2007

PM: Defend the spirit of Merdeka

KUALA LUMPUR: This land and sky above it belongs to all Malaysians, and it is their home and shelter. It promises a strong foundation and a bright future for all citizens to live in unity and full cooperation, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi said.
The Prime Minister said the country’s independence was fought for by all races in Malaysia and their joint effort had been the basis for the country’s success.
“Malaysia will continue to be developed together in a spirit in which we will not allow any narrow interpretation of the people’s identity, religious extremism, injustice against any citizen or uncertainties on the future or any citizen,” he said in his speech at the Merdeka Mammoth Celebrations at Stadium Merdeka here last night. He said that it was at Stadium Merdeka where “Merdeka” was first hailed 50 years ago and it continued to be shouted for another 50 years.
“The acclamation will continue forever, as long as there is a moon and sun,” he said, adding that the independence of the country and its people must continue to be defended.
“We must continue to sow the Merdeka spirit. As of last night (Thursday), the first 50 years have passed. Today is the first day in our journey into the next 50 years,” he said in calling on Malaysians to pledge not to allow their motherland and their mentality to be ruled by others.
Abdullah added that it would be the various communities who would continue to steer the country’s future and progress.
“We will continue to ensure it is a peaceful and stable country, practise moderation and have mutual understanding and respect among the people of various cultures.
“Malaysia will strive to foster good relations with all countries and not take any action to spark animosity. Malaysia will bring the voice of peace in international issues,” he said.
Abdullah called on Malaysians to reflect on the country’s success and be thankful that the people of all races, religions and cultures had come together to build one country and one nation – a Malaysia that has become a model for success.
“We must be thankful for the prosperity enjoyed by so many of us, prosperity which is still just a dream to people in many countries in the world,” he added.

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