Don’t be lazy, PM tells future leaders

What determines the success or failure of a person or a nation are the values that they hold

by ALIFAH ZAINUDDIN & SHAZNI ONG / pic by MUHD AMIN NAHARUL

PRIME Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has called on all Malaysians, especially the youth, to rise and come out of their reverence to help the country restore its place as a tiger economy in the region.

Dr Mahathir urged the nation to instil three key values that will ensure the success of the country — namely to be hardworking, knowledgeable and accountable.

“For us to be a successful nation, we need to work hard and have knowledge. The knowledge will come if you are diligent in acquiring it.

“I am not asking much, all you have to do is work hard,” the 93-year-old political leader said in his maiden speech at the Rise of the Asian Tiger Convention held at Universiti Teknologi Mara in Shah Alam yesterday.

He was addressing an audience of students from local universities and schools. “You are going to be the future leaders of Malaysia, so you better be good, capable and able to lead, then you will become leaders of Malaysia,” Dr Mahathir said.

He said the three values must be instilled to cultivate good character.

“If we practise these values, the nation will succeed, the country will succeed and Malaysia will be a developed country,” he added.

Reminiscing his early days as a medical student at the King Edward VII College of Medicine in Singapore, Dr Mahathir confessed that he was not among the brightest in his class.

“But when we know we are weak, we must be diligent and work extra hard,” he said.

Dr Mahathir said he would read his textbook again and again until he was able to picture the pages in his mind when the tests arrived.

“It is human nature, that when we try and try again, we will eventually succeed,” Dr Mahathir said.

He added that everyone is given the capacity to think. However, what determines the success or failure of a person or a nation are the values that they hold close to.

Citing the Japanese culture of honouring their promises, Dr Mahathir said a person should feel ashamed if they fail to achieve what they had set out to do.

“We should be ashamed if we fail to fulfil our role. To avoid this failure, we should work very hard and put a lot of thoughts into what we do.

“We have to strive hard to achieve the future that we desire. We cannot squander the opportunities before our eyes,” Dr Mahathir said.