COVID-19 pandemic highlights the good in Malaysians, says Saifuddin


THE COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the good in Malaysians regardless of their diverse backgrounds, said Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah (picture).

Describing it as the new normal of patriotism spirit, he said the matter was due to the symbiotic relationship between the frontliners and the people which was clearly shown since the country was hit by the pandemic.

“COVID-19 highlights the good in the community, who helps each other regardless of race and religion.

“For example, when fashion designers hear that Kuala Lumpur Hospital does not have enough PPE (personal protection equipment) during the early stages (of the pandemic)…many volunteer to sew PPE for the hospital for more than a month and there were many other examples.

“… that is the new norm of patriotism where the people, not only the government, including corporations work together to help each other,” he said when appearing as a guest on the RTM ‘Selamat Pagi Malaysia’ programme entitled ‘Selamat Hari Kebangsaan Malaysia Prihatin’ today.

Saifuddin said the spirit of patriotism means the love and affection for the country, but the focus is slightly different according to the transition of time.

“For those who went through the colonial period, the focus of patriotism was to free (the country), and during the confrontation, the focus of patriotism at that time was to save the newly established nation.

“We used to face economic recession, so the focus was on reviving the economy, after the May 13 incident, the focus was on unity while during COVID-19, the focus was on safety, well-being, health and also to revive the economy,” he said.

Meanwhile, Saifuddin said although this year the country could not celebrate National Day on a large scale like the previous years, but other means of celebration will still be carried out to lift the spirit of patriotism in the people.

For example, the ministry has created #MomenNegaraku to encourage the public to share their most beautiful experiences as Malaysians on their social media accounts including on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.