Dr M: Value system, not race hampers Malaysia’s progress

‘The most important thing we often overlook is to adopt the good value system and be willing to change our value when it is proven to be wrong’


FORMER Prime Minister (PM) Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad (picture) said it is the value system, not race, that needs correction in order for Malaysia to progress at par with other nations.

Dr Mahathir said some individuals still choose to stick to the value system that is not progressive and inferior, compared to other nations.

“Regardless of race, the most important thing we often overlook is to adopt the good value system and be willing to change our value when it is proven to be wrong,” he said during the launch of his latest book, “Capturing Hope”, in Kuala Lumpur yesterday.

Dr Mahathir lamented several issues that remain unresolved in the country such as the racial divide, education system, level of productivity and the toxicity of the existing political landscape.

“It is impossible for a multiracial country to prosper while being divided. We have a lot of potential, but if each race insists on being identifiable as their race, therefore we must work together.”

“We share common values and have proven to be harmonious before, therefore let’s adjust the mindset and adapt within the community for the good of the country and that is the future,” he added.

In a broader sense, he expressed hope for the current and new generation of Malaysians to bring out the country from its current gloom through the upcoming 15th General Election.

“Capturing Hope” aims to enlighten the reader of the government’s downfall, encompassing the changes of leadership, as well as historical and racial aspects that bring Malaysia to where it stands today.

“I find that Malaysians still have a vague understanding of the current situation, especially the younger generation who are born with the country being already developed,” said the nation’s fourth and seventh PM.

“As the country is moving and progressing, there is a need to remind the current and future generation of what happened in the past, especially as we live in a multicultural country.”

Dr Mahathir said the heightened awareness of the country’s origin, political development, which entails the abuses of power, will help the public understand and eventually come up with a fix.

“In the sense it can help recognise the problem,” he said, adding that: “Those are important pillars which we need to acknowledge in order to maintain prosperity in a multiracial country and are not divided.”

The book was penned during his retirement and re-entry into politics to lead the Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition to victory in the historic 2018 polls.

A sequel to the previous best-selling “A Doctor in the House: The Memoirs of Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad”, the book partly follows the previous memoir chronologically.

In the book, the nonagenarian offers a frank and at times blunt discussion of the difficulties that the PH government faced, the challenges of rebuilding the national political consensus, the betrayals from within the coalition that ultimately resulted in the PH-led government’s downfall.

That included Dr Mahathir’s attempts to set the record straight regarding the PH government and his second tenure as PM of Malaysia.

“It is important for people to know, what happened, why such a country, Malaysia, an ‘Asian Tiger’ has suddenly become a kleptocracy. I hope readers will catch something through the book,” he said.

The book also lays down discussion of the devastating impact it brings, as well as his unfinished struggle to steer Malaysia away from the destructive political dynamics that have fuelled corruption and division in the country for so long.

Collaborating with MPH Group Publishing, his new book, “Capturing Hope: The Struggle Continues for a New Malaysia”, will be available at all major bookstores in Malaysia and Singapore.