By Kurniawati Kamarudin
KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 16 -- Whether consciously or not, the bond of harmony and unity enjoyed by Malaysians to this day is embodied in the principles contained in the Rukun Negara.
For 50 years, the Rukun Negara has become the guiding compass for Malaysians in developing a prosperous country.
However, like the wheel of life which has its ups and downs, so is the spirit of Rukun Negara in the people. The appreciation and understanding of the earlier generation when the national philosophy was formulated, has diminished over time and seems to be neglected especially by the younger generation today.
There should be better understanding of the values and importance of the five principles of the Rukun Negara especially among the multi-racial, multi-religious and multi-cultural society in this country. It is not enough for the people to merely memorise and recite the Rukun Negara.
This year's Rukun Negara Golden Jubilee celebration, which was jointly organised by the Communications and Multimedia Ministry and the National Unity Ministry over the past three months, is the best way to revive the observance and spirit of appreciation of the national philosophy.
During the celebration period, the issue of unity became the main topic discussed and debated either academically or casually via various mediums whether social media, print and electronic.
The objective is for the people to return to the Rukun Negara which supports the ideals towards greater unity in addition to maintaining a democratic, fair and progressive society based on science and technology.
Going back to the time when the Rukun Negara was officially declared on Aug 31, 1970, it revealed bloody events and tears.
It was not crafted for fun, but rather following the racial riots on May 13, 1963, that threatened the unity of the people at that time.
Figures such as former Chief Justice Tun Salleh Abas, Keeper of the Ruler’s Seal Tan Sri Syed Danial Syed Ahmad, and former lawyer Tan Sri Kamarul Ariffin Mohamed Yassin were among those who shared their experiences when drafting the Rukun Negara at that time.
Basically, all quarters from country leaders to the common people, are aware of the importance of the Rukun Negara as the pillar of national unity and harmony that must be appreciated by all levels of society.
Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin when launching the Rukun Negara Golden Jubilee celebration on July 9, had emphasised on the importance of Rukun Negara and wanted Rukun Negara education to be made a core agenda of the government to ensure that it becomes a daily practice in society.
In conjunction with Malaysia Day on Sept 16, the curtain for the golden jubilee celebration came to a close today with the Rukun Negara Hour special live broadcast on Bernama TV and Bernama Radio.
The two-hour progamme which started at 9 am, featured interesting interactions with invited guests such as renowned producer and director, Datuk Rosyam Nor, and Yayasan Perpaduan Malaysia Board of Trustees member, Tan Sri Lee Lam Thye.
The aim was to strengthen the appreciation of the national philosophy among Malaysians.
Besides that, the Malaysian National News Agency (Bernama) will publish a photobook titled ‘Ikrar Perpaduan Ulang Tahun ke-50 Rukun Negara’ to enliven the five principles of the Rukun Negara.
Bernama had also carried out various programmes and activities during the golden jubilee celebration including the 50th Rukun Negara Anniversary Celebration Roadshow, Insta Challenge, Rukun Negara Hour, Webinar, e-Treasure-Hunt, a series of talk shows and documentaries.
Hopefully, these efforts would not be the end in igniting the appreciation of the Rukun Negara which requires cooperation from all quarters, from the country’s top leaders to the people at the grassroots.
If every citizen in the country takes responsibilities to implement all that is contained and envisaged in the Rukun Negara, Malaysia will continue to be peaceful and harmonious and ultimately become an advanced and developed country in the future.
Malaysian National News Agency
No.28 Jalan BERNAMA
Off Jalan Tun Razak
50400 Kuala Lumpur
Tel : +603-2693 9933 (General Line)
Email : helpdesk[at]bernama.com