SERDANG, Sept 14 -- The Rukun Negara needs to be well mastered by government officials because it is an umbrella for the policies, activities and unity pursuits implemented by the government for the good of the people and the country, said an academic.
Unity adviser to the National Unity Ministry, Professor Datuk Dr Shamsul Amri Baharuddin said government officials, who are responsible for implementing policies formulated by the government, need to master the understanding of the five principles of the Rukun Negara.
According to him, for a long time, the policy formulated by the government was based on the principles of the Rukun Negara whose ultimate goal is unity among the multiracial Malaysian society, and it included the New Economic Policy.
"Understanding must be built in the appreciation of the Rukun Negara in people who want to implement it (policy)," Shamsul said this when he was a panellist on the Intellectual Discourse on the Rukun Negara and Semarak Merdeka Campaign themed "5 Decades, 5 Principles of Rukun Negara: Reality and Challenges", organised by Universiti Putra Malaysia.
"The policy is good, but the problem is when government officials, namely the bureaucratic ministries from the state to district levels...they try to interpret (things) for themselves.
“The government and policy implementers must not do anything contrary to the wishes of the government, the principles of the Malaysia Agreement, and the principle of sharing, justice and fairness. Policy and implementation need to be in sync," he stressed.
Another panellist, Associate Professor Dr Jessica Ong Hai Liaw, the Deputy Dean (Research and Postgraduate) Defence Studies and Management, Universiti Pertahanan Nasional Malaysia, said the fifth principle in the Rukun Negara, namely courtesy and morality, should be practised by all walks of life to ensure that unity can be achieved.
"The younger generation is now facing challenges in terms of communication on social media. Sometimes when writing on social media, we forget about being civil, and that is why we see many lawsuits happening,” she said.
Malaysian National News Agency
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