After 62 years of independence, Sultan Nazrin said those with narrow and short-term political aim should not be allowed to hijack the voice of unity and moderation that have brought the people together.
"Our youth should understand and appreciate the importance of our unity and how races appreciate and respect each other.
"It is important to avoid committing things that can hurt others' feelings, deny the rights of one race or violate the basic things as agreed when forming the Federal Constitution," he said in his speech during the 48th Convocation Ceremony at Politeknik Ungku Omar here on Tuesday (Aug 20).
"Each citizen has the responsibility to defend the sovereignty of this country and to ensure it remains peaceful and prosperous," he said.
Sultan Nazrin also said about 15 million or 66% of voters aged between 18 and 40 could vote in the 15th General Election, making them the dominant voice.
Advising the youth to choose their leaders wisely, he said: "This decision should not be seen as just giving the voting rights to the youth but should be interpreted as an opportunity to give a bigger power to our youths to determine the country's leadership and choose its government.
"Choosing a government is serious because the people and the country depends on those given the power to form the government.
"Evaluation should be based on rationality and facts, and not on sentiment and emotion," he added.
Sultan Nazrin also said having the law amended by lawmakers to redefine "youth" as those aged between 15 and 30 would compel youth organisations to be led by those aged below 30.
"It is a step towards entrusting them with leadership responsibility.
"Our youth are now given the chance to set the agenda, programmes and direction based on their aspirations," he added.
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