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The memorandum sent by the nine non-Muslim ministers to our prime minister was a move most welcomed by most of the citizens I have talked to, though they said provided it was not a sandiwara .

The move was described by Pak Lah as 'unprecedented', but to us, it has long been overdue.

For the past 22 years under Dr Mahathir Mohamad, leaders of the other BN coalition parties appear to be nothing more than yes-men. Their positions in the cabinet are just to show that the other races are well-represented and to thus project Malaysia as a model to other multi-racial and multi-religious nations.

We have had to put up with leaders who dare not voice their objections, if any, to governmental high-handedness, big-scale corruption, open and unfair discrimination based on race and religion and so on. It has given the impression (and there were suggestions) that Mahathir had 'X-files' on each one of them to make sure they toed the line!

Whether by design or otherwise, Pak Lah's style of leadership has given rise to more open discussions, especially on the Internet, as the mainstream media are still controlled by BN. There is now pressure on the leadership to be more transparent, fair and accountable. Though action on wrongdoers is still slow and leaves much to be desired, the situation is improving.

The justices of the court are beginning to voice out without fear or favour, and if the trend continues, it will only be for the good of the country and the people.

There is a limit as to how much a person can carry on pretending that everything is "OK" and to go on without principles. If a person is not being respected and cannot sleep well, what good are the material wealth and 'datukship'?

Sadly, there is no shortage of people willing to be in such positions of "power".

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