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Tuesday November 7, 2006
By MARSHA TAN, TEH ENG HOCK, MEERA VIJAYAN and FARIK ZOLKEPLI
JOHOR BARU: The Bangsa Malaysia concept is the state of an individual's mind and does not infringe on Malay special rights and privileges, said Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
The Deputy Prime Minister said Bangsa Malaysia was a concept and had nothing to do with the Constitution or national policies, but was related to an individual’s state of mind.
“It does not question the special rights of the Malays, our quota or anything of that sort.”
He was commenting on Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Abdul Ghani Othman’s opening speech on Sunday which questioned the need for people of different races in the country to be ethnically diluted or mixed up merely for a concept that was still “hazy” in its meaning.
Later Najib, who is also Umno deputy president, told reporters that the Bangsa Malaysia concept was far from needing change in the Constitution, as it was just a general concept.
Asked about Gerakan president Datuk Seri Lim Keng Yaik’s statement that Johor Umno was going against government policy when it rejected the notion of Bangsa Malaysia, Najib said: “It is for the Government to decide on suitable policies from time to time, on whether to retain or review existing ones.
“But if we can focus on the concept of Bangsa Malaysia being a state of mind, then we can avoid polemics.
“If we try to define it, this could raise more questions and hot up the debate. If we were to amend the Constitution, the country would be in disorder.”
Meanwhile, in his closing speech, Abdul Ghani said the concept that have had been widely used brought about the concept of pluralism, which was equality without a core base.
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