KUALA LUMPUR – The “Himpunan Rakyat Bersatu” held on Wednesday was a manifestation of the rise of Malays to defend their dignity and the country’s leadership from being condemned and humiliated.
Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said even though several illegal rallies had been held before this to challenge the dignity of the Malays, they were patient.
But the Bersih 4 rally was considered the turning point when several participants went beyond the limit by stomping on the picture of national leaders and insulting the country’s leadership,” he said at the National Silat Federation (Pesaka) Silat Assembly 2015 at Dataran Merdeka, here, last night.
Speaking before 15,000 members of Pesaka from all over the country, Najib said: “Slapped once, we did not do anything. The second time…nothing…the third time…nothing…but the fourth time had crossed the limit. Malays also have rights.
“The Malays will stand up when their pride is scarred, when their leader is insulted, condemned and humiliated. It’s enough, do not repeat such vengeful acts,” he said.
He said the assembly of silat exponents tonight showed they were prepared to defend the nation’s dignity from being humiliated.
In his speech, Najib also reminded that the government could not be changed through street demonstrations.
“Do not think the government today has no support…the 15,000 people assembled here tonight are also our supporters,” he said and was met with thunderous applause from the crowd.
Najib also called on the community not to be taken by poison spewed from inside and outside the country, or through cyberspace by those wanting to topple the government.
he prime minister said the Malays despite having the right to be angry following several illegal rallies before, could still assemble in a civilised manner.
“Even though it was earlier demonised that when the Malays assembled there would be trouble, the assembly was peaceful.
“No seditious or racist banners, no stomping of pictures…so other people should not be worried, as we are not people gathering or carrying out street demonstrations to topple the government,” he said.
Also present were Pesaka chairman Tan Sri Ali Rustam, socio-cultural affairs adviser to the government Tan Sri Dr Rais Yatim and International Trade and Industry Deputy Minister Datuk Ahmad Maslan.
At the event, Najib also declared silat as the official national art of self-defence.
Najib said as prime minister, he wanted to see Malay silat continued to spread from every corner including the government offices, government-linked companies and even universities.
“We want the Malay silat world to be empowered of its position and dignity,” he said.