Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad said the government intends to develop the nation by focusing on the agenda of ‘enriching the people’ through the creation of more job and business opportunities.
Mahathir, who also chairs Pakatan Harapan, said this was to educate the people to be more independent and efficient in generating their own income through businesses, as well as to help improve the country’s economy.
“When the people are rich, the government will also be rich, because we will collect taxes from the people.
"If the people are poor, we will not be able to collect taxes, so we will educate our people to be business minded and able to hold whatever positions,” he said when speaking at the Jelajah Malaysia Baharu programme at Dataran Stargate in Alor Setar tonight.
Also present were Harapan president and Deputy Prime Minister Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, Amanah president and Defence Minister Mohamad Sabu, as well as Bersatu deputy president and Kedah Menteri Besar Mukhriz Mahathir.
As such, he said the government would strive to provide loan capital to those interested in venturing into business with the condition that they must repay their loans to the parties concerned.
“Some people say money borrowed needed not be paid back, that will not develop the country... the money we borrowed will be paid back to the people lending it,” he said.
Even though Malaysia practised a democratic system, Mahathir also advised the people to be wiser, so as not to make any mistakes when choosing the country’s leaders.
“We believe democracy gives the right to the people (to elect leaders), but the people must be wise and not simply accept whatever the leader did, or they will get a rogue leader,” he said.
The Prime Minister also wanted the people to give more time to the Harapan government to rebuild the country, which he described as being damaged due to the greed of the previous government.
The programme, which was attended by 1,000 people, was the first Harapan tour after forming the government last May.