The Merdeka Statement

This the text of the Merdeka Statement prepared by the Centre for Public Policy Studies (CPPS) and 42 NGO’s, as excerpted from Haris Ibrahim’s blog at http://harismibrahim.wordpress.com

More updates shortly.

In the struggles towards forging a national identity, great efforts have been taken to strengthen national unity in the country, which must be supported by all. However, recently the state of unity has been fraying at the edges. Ethnic, linguistic and religious divides have deepened, causing genuine pain and hurt to many in our nation. Such a fragile state of unity should not have happened after 50 years of nation building. New sustained efforts are urgently needed to rebuild our National Unity.

WE BELIEVE THAT:

  • The current National Unity Advisory Panel, under the Jabatan Perpaduan Negara & Integrasi Nasional, should be made an independent National Unity & Integration Commission, empowered to review legislation, policies and practices that impede on national unity, investigate complaints of ethnic, linguistic and religious discrimination both in Government and the private sector; made answerable to Parliament and chaired by reputable and credible individuals; and include a Truth and Reconciliation Committee, which will serve to grapple with key incidents of conflict and hurt in the country’s past, which is an important and necessary part of the healing of the national psyche, in the road towards a peaceful shared future.

  • All new policies should be tested against the tenets of the Federal Constitution and the Rukunegara – no policy formulated should becontrary to the spirit of the values contained therein.

  • An independent and transparent National Consultative Council on Vision 2020 should be established immediately, for representatives from the Government, private sector businesses, academia, media and civil society to discuss progress towards Vision 2020 and beyond.

  • A National Research Institute on Ethnic Relations should be established as a centre that co-ordinates in-depth research on Ethnic Relations and Culture, compiling stories of inter-ethnic cooperation and mutual assistance.

  • Public-Private Partnerships to strengthen National Unity should be launched at all levels and in all sectors.

  • Islam is the religion of the Federation of Malaysia as clearly set out in the Federal Constitution. The freedom to profess and practice the religions of choice as enshrined in the Federal Constitution does not threaten this position. The Government has committed itself to the principles of freedom, protection of minorities and universal values, values of which must be continuously and relentlessly upheld for the sake of all Malaysians.

  • Any extremism in the form and shape of ethnicity, religion and gender should not be propagated or tolerated at any level.

WE BELIEVE THAT THE FEDERAL CONSTITUTION AS SUPREME LAW OF THE LAND IS THE PRIMARY REFERENCE POINT FOR STRENGTHENING NATIONAL UNITY, AND THAT ALL NATIONAL POLICIES SHOULD BE TESTED AGAINST ITS CENTRAL TENETS.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s




%d bloggers like this: