Malaysiakini News

New Malaysia must be inclusive for all, says lawyer

Published:  |  Modified:

The new Pakatan Harapan government should accord all Malaysians – regardless or faith, beliefs, race, sexual identity, skin colour and political affiliation – a chance to contribute to the country, says civil rights lawyer Syahredzan Johan.

Referring to the current administration's shake-up of public agencies and GLCs, Syahredzan said in a statement today that the new government should retain performing heads and employees, despite differences in political preferences.

He urged the Dr Mahathir Mohamad-led administration to not carry out a "witch-hunt" against civil servants or GLC heads deemed as being not in line with their views, saying that the "new Malaysia must be inclusive and encourage participation of all parties who wish to contribute towards efforts to rebuild the country."

Syahredzan, who also serves as the political secretary to Lim Kit Siang, echoed calls made by the DAP veteran and PKR’s Nik Nazmi Nik Ahmad for the government to know where to draw the line when clearing out political appointees and other figures deemed problematic.

This, they had said, was so that it does not give anyone reason to believe the exercise is merely an excuse to appoint those aligned to the coalition.

"Those who truly want to contribute to the nation should be given an opportunity to do so, regardless of their faith, beliefs, race, sexual identity, skin colour and political affiliation.

"There should be no discrimination or restriction on any individuals who have the ability and capability to contribute to the country, just based on these grounds," he stressed.

'Clean up the rot in gov't'

Syahredzan did concede, however, that there are elements within the civil service or GLCs who colluded and contributed to the rot under the previous BN administration.

"These people should be dropped or transferred from their positions," he said.

The lawyer also cautioned the new government to be wary of formerly BN-supporting "opportunists" outside the system who are now attempting to cosy up to the new administration.

Since taking over the federal administration, Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad has initiated a major reshuffle of various government agencies and GLCs as part of Harapan’s reform agenda.

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