KUALA LUMPUR: Every Malaysian is a stakeholder with interest to see the country thrive and succeed, says Tan Sri Rafidah Aziz (pic).
She added that no one can afford to see it destroyed by negative criticism from armchair critics.
Rafidah, who is also Economic Action Council member, said she was disappointed to learn that some Malaysians freely dished out criticism without understanding the facts first.
"Nobody can afford to be an armchair critic, most importantly young people like you.
"Unfortunately, there are more young people becoming more motivated to become armchair critics, " she said.
Rafidah said this on Saturday (Aug 17) when she addressed a student audience at the Malaysian Student Leaders' Summit 2019 organised by the United Kingdom Eire Council for Malaysian Students.
She said that negative criticism about the country posted on social media can be destructive, adding that it does the country no good.
Rafidah said that the Government does not shun criticism and welcomes constructive critiques that could lead the nation to success.
The former International Trade and Industries Minister said she herself welcomed such criticism when she held the post.
"Sometimes it is so difficult to find one good, value-adding critique because everyone just starts condemning and using words that irritate people and make others upset and angry.
"Young people have many tools and more knowledge than we had, so please be constructive, " she said.
She also warned of the dangers of using social media irresponsibly, saying venomous words used online could spark tension among the people and bring destruction to the country.
"Destruction can not only be caused by nuclear bombs but also by the poisoning of minds and by weakening motivation. That is the worst thing that could happen to a country.
"Please do not use social media to destroy your own country. Do not let Malaysia be part of this negative trend of bringing down our country, " she said.