REMBAU – Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said the open house celebration is a platform for the people of this country to foster a sense of national unity and solidarity in the context of nation-building.
He said the diversity that existed among the people was the strength or challenges to be faced in binding the ties among the people to become more solid and robust.
Najib was addressing the 2015 Malaysia Aidilfitri Open House celebration held at Dataran Rembau here last night.
Earlier Najib and his wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor arrived at about 9.15 pm, accompanied by Negeri Sembilan Besar Datuk Seri Mohamad Hasan, Youth and Sports Minister Khairy Jamaluddin and Tourism and Culture Deputy Minister Datuk Mas Ermieyati Samsuddin.
Themed ‘Semarak Seni Aidilfitri’ the open house organised by the Ministry of Tourism and Culture, in collaboration with the state government, aims to highlight the wealth of arts and culture of the country, in addition to showcasing the traditional Aidilfitri celebration as a platform for the country’s tourism.
He said the mention of ‘unity in diversity’ was particularly unique to Malaysia.
“I have three phases in which the concept of unity in diversity can be a yardstick for all of us. The first is when we can be tolerant. The second phase is when we can accept the concept of unity in diversity by assuming it is a reality and a fact that we cannot reject.
“The highest level of all is when we celebrate diversity. When we get to the stage to celebrate that diversity, it means we have reached the peak to accept diversity as an advantage, a privilege and a culture that we celebrate gladly,” he said.
In the meantime, the Prime Minister called on the people to ask themselves why some of them were easily caught into perspectives of racism when an incident occurs.
Citing the recent Low Yat Plaza incident as an example, Najib said it was a normal incident or crime which almost turned into communal clashes.
“This is what I want to remind all of us that we must not look at things, incidents or events through the prism of race.
“Because this tendency can take us and our country into a precarious situation that can lead to serious disputes between the races,” he said.
“Najib also reminded the people to be more careful by not allowing the social media incites feelings because this can become a source of contention,” he said.
The open house, organised in line with Malaysia Year of Festivals or MyFest 2015, aims to boost the tourism industry and was also attended by the foreign media delegation of 40 people from 11 countries including Russia, Germany, Switzerland, Taiwan and Kazakhstan.