'We've lost the nationalism spirit'

KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysians still have weak spirit of nationalism and this can be an obstacle to attaining developed nation status, Youth and Sports Deputy Minister Razali Ibrahim said.

He said Malaysia should look at Japan, South Korea and Singapore as the countries had succeeded with strong spirit of nationalism.

"This is what we are lacking," he said adding people in developed countries rarely talk bad about their own countries but would defend them.

"Singapore is the best example," Razali who is also Umno Youth deputy chief said citing the "kiasu" (afraid of losing) attitude among Singaporeans.

He said "kiasu" was not something negative although some Malaysians found it odd and called Singaporeans "kiasu".

"Kiasu is the nationalism spirit for Singapore. It means that weaknesses will be corrected without smearing the country's good name. Kiasu is the key or secret to Singapore's success."

'Even 1M'sia comes under attack'

Razali said the people's confidence in the country would reflect the confidence of foreigners adding Singapore would protect the interest of its investors.

The nationalism spirit of Thais and Indonesians were also stronger than Malaysians despite the anti-government demonstrations which ended recently.

Indonesia also had its share of problems but nationalism among the people was not one of them.

"But we have lost the nationalism spirit. Even the 1Malaysia concept to make the people and nation developed is attacked by some people. Will running down your own country make others respect us more?"

Razali said such an attitude among Malaysians would automatically make others have low opinion or lose confidence in the country. Bernama

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