KUALA LUMPUR: Entrepreneur Chris Gardner, whose memoir The Pursuit of Happyness was made into a film starring Will Smith in 2006 and who was here for a talk, was so impressed by his visit that the 63-year-old wrote an open letter praising Malaysia. Here’s what he said:
“I’d like to thank all of the people in Kuala Lumpur for recently inviting me to speak at the Global Transformation Forum 2017. This forum is indeed a model and blueprint for other nations to attempt to duplicate.
“The list of speakers at the forum included some of the biggest names in business, technology and sports, but the most important people that I met during my visit were the people of Malaysia! The people who live, work and are Malaysians!
“At this point in my life, I’ve been blessed to have visited and spoken in 80 countries and I can say with no hesitation that the warmth, spirit and hospitality of the Malaysian people is beyond anything that I’ve ever experienced anywhere on the planet.
“I was particularly impressed with the energy, passion and drive that I saw reflected in the faces of young Malaysians.
“It excites me to meet and interact with people who will soon be leaders not just of Malaysia or South-East Asia but of the world.
“One of the things many people that I interacted with had shared with me was their ‘feelings of fear’ as a result of so many recent political developments and world events.
“My response was and is simple; in this times of tension, anger, negativity, hostility and indeed hatred, this is the time to be like a candle in a cave.
“If you’re about anything that is positive, enlightening or empowering, your work has just become more important than ever.
“And as you stand there as a candle in a cave, others will be drawn to your light. And the first one to come and stand next to you will be me!
“I thank you all again and look forward to seeing you soon!”