From Muin Abdul Majid
DAKAR, Jan 17 (Bernama) – Addressing a conference on African emergence, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad underscored the importance of a stable government to propel the development of any country.
The Malaysian prime minister noted that many countries had accepted democracy as a system of governance.
In the case of Malaysia, he said, the power of the vote was respected, allowing the winning party to form a strong government following an election.
"Because of that, with peace and stability in the country, Malaysia has been able to develop much faster," he said.
He said this when sharing the Malaysian path towards development during the high level dialogue session at the Third International Conference on the Emergence of Africa ( ICEA-III) here on Thursday.
The fruits of democracy, he said, could only be had if people understood the power of the vote.
"But sometimes people who lose an election are not willing to accept losing. They create problems resulting in the country becoming unstable and difficult to govern," he said.
"When you find a lot of political instability, it's difficult for a country to develop," Dr Mahathir said.
The session included the participation of Senegalese President Macky Sall and President Ibrahim Boubacar Keita of Mali.
The prime minister also spoke about the importance of attracting foreign investments through which countries could acquire the necessary technology and skills to further their development agenda.
Dr Mahathir has the distinction of being the only Asian head of government invited to take part in the Jan 17-19 conference.