Dr Mahathir Mohamad, Pakatan Harapan's candidate for the Prime Minister, in his Vision 2020 forum in Cyberjaya on Friday, 12 December, had some tough words to share about the Malay culture
Speaking at the Forum, the former Prime Minister expressed sadness over the Malay culture that he said had become a major stumbling block in Malaysia's journey to be a developed country by 2020, which was his vision for the country as part of the Malaysian ideal he introduced during the tabling of the Sixth Malaysia Plan in 1991.
Saying that while Malays are as capable as the Europeans and the Japanese, he said that it's the Malay culture that remains a problem
"We the Malays can achieve success with our capability but we are found to be not so hardworking and sometimes not so trustworthy.
"We do not want to do complicated work. We always try to find the easy way out, that is why we are left behind. We like it when there is less work despite a high pay.
"It is not because we cannot (carry out duties) but because we do not want to, that is the problem," Dr Mahathir said while adding that it shows how we lack commitment.
Comparing the Malays and the Japanese, he said the Japanese took pride in their work and had a "strong sense of shame"
In Comparision, among the Malays, there is less sense of shame, Dr Mahathir said, while adding that Malays should heed lessons from the situation in Japan in 1961.
It was the time when the Japanese worked hard to rebuild their nation.
"They were paid just with fistfuls of rice and soy sauce at the time, and they were able to make Japan great again after the country was ruined in war. It's in their culture to work hard and produce great results for others to admire," Dr Mahathir said during his speech at the Forum, as reported by The Malaysian Insight.
He also said that even if Malays do bad work, it is okay (for us).
But the same is not true for Japanese, who would be ashamed to go home if they did less work and were less productive than their peers, he added.
What do you think about Dr Mahathir's criticism of the Malay culture? You can share your thoughts in the comments below.