Eversince I was a child growing up in Malaysia, I have always been fascinated by the world of politics, for I equate the world of politics to being the world of leaders, the world of people of high standing, the world of statesmen. But that was when I was a child.
Born in 1961, I grew up in a time when my country, Malaysia, having received its independence in 1957 from Britain, was continuosly in a state of development and modernization. The country’s leaders were always extolling the virtues of unity and tolerance with the aim of enhancing the plight of the common man. And all this in the face of adversities eg the communist threat, insurgencies, racial disharmony, and religious and political intolerance, both from within and without.
It was also the time that I learn about the politics of development, when development was the key towards the betterment of the people. But that was then.
Today, you still hear a semblance of the politics of development in Malaysian politics but you must agree, the voices of disharmony is so loud that it threatens to drown out the voices of those that want to see the country peaceful and prosperous. Often enough, it makes me wonder whether these voices of disharmony are secretly fulfilling the agenda of a foreign element because no right thinking Malaysian, in my view, would want to see this country go to the dogs, no disrespect to the canine family intended.
That said, I am still fascinated by politics albeit with major changes in thinking. As unfashionable as it may be, I am still pro-establishment but that does not mean that they are error-free and therefore cannot be criticised. And I do not mind having an opposition for so long as they are a responsible opposition, and not one that a pursues a policy of opposing for the sake of opposing.
Having served in the government service, I am aware of the separation of powers between the Legislative, the Executive and the Judiciary, although there were many a times eversince the last General Election in 2008, when I wondered whether some of the voices of disharmony are aware of that as well.
And because I am a Malay and a Muslim does not mean that I am any less a Malaysian than the next person nor am I any less tolerant of the different religious practices of my friends who are not Malay and not Muslim. And I do have non-Malay and non-Muslim friends, believe you me.
I believe you cannot run away from politics no matter how hard you try. But for so long as it is the politics of development, the politics of tolerance, the politics of unity and the politics of moderation, then I think we should in good hands.
And I pray that its not just wishful thinking.