KUALA LUMPUR – It is not possible for any one race to govern Malaysia effectively, says former deputy prime minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin.
â€œThanks to our electoral system, no single party can form a national government by solely depending on the support of a particular race.
“It (the electoral system) discourages pursuit of racial and religious extremism, incentivises moderation and punishes extremism,â€ he said in his speech at the International Peace Conference in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina yesterday.
The text of his speech was posted on his Facebook page.
Muhyiddin described how the leaders of a newly-independent Malaya in 1957 focused their efforts on building trust amongst the different races.
â€œMaintaining political stability rested on the wisdom of each leader to gain their communityâ€™s trust whilst forging true understanding with their counterparts,â€ he said, adding the task was â€œmonumentalâ€.
As a result, after many concessions and mounting pressures, a multi-ethnic coalition emerged to form a national government with broad based support, despite pessimistic observations of the day about then Malayaâ€™s future as a multiracial country.
He observed that political stability, economic growth and development would not have been possible without racial harmony. – Bernama