PUTRAJAYA: Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad is determined to restore Malaysia to its former glory.
"Our country was well-respected previously, but now it is not the same as in the past. We must restore the country to ensure that it will be looked highly upon and respected once again," he said in his speech to government officers at the Prime Minister's Department on Monday (May 21).
He asked civil servants to give him their undivided cooperation in the administration of the country.
"As long as I don't violate any laws, I hope all of you will give your undivided cooperation to me as the Prime Minister, " he said when addressing the staff of the Prime Minister's Department for the first time since taking office
The Prime Minister this was especially needed so that the government can look for ways to manage and settle Malaysia's debt, which he said now stands at RM1tril.
"I must state that those who have done wrong will have to be dealt with according to law," he added.
Dr Mahathir also said that the three pillars of the country - the executive, legislature and judiciary - will be well-separated and that the rule of law will be restored.
Accompanied by Tun Dr Siti Hasmah Mohd Ali, the Prime Minister arrived at 8.20 am to attend the monthly gathering of the Prime Minister's Department.
He was welcomed on arrival by Chief Secretary to Government Tan Sri Dr Mohd Ali Hamsa and Public Services director-general Tan Sri Zainal Rahim Seman.
As he took the stage, those present welcomed him with thunderous applause.
This is the first time that Dr Mahathir has addressed civil servants since he took office after the May 9 polls.
On May 14, Dr Mahathir kicked off his official duties as the new prime minister at the Yayasan Perdana Leadership Foundation.
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