PUTRAJAYA - While loyalty towards leadership is essential in any country, the government does not demand one to be a blind follower, nor does it practice dictatorship, says the Prime Minister.
Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak said that loyalty in action and thinking would ensure stability of a nation and Islam requires its followers to heed to their leaders for as long as they are not evil or oppressive.
"Essentially, the public should support the Government which has carried out many efforts and initiatives for the good of the people.
"Never has the Government acted cruelly or did things that are detrimental to them or the country," he said when launching an International Conference on Wasatiyyah here yesterday.
He said apart from loyalty or wala, moderation or wasatiyyah is also an important element in leadership or in a Government.
"We have seen how jihad has been misconstrued so much so that there are those willing to topple democratically elected governments.
"That's why we don't want the people to practise loyalty without them knowing the importance of moderation," said the Prime Minister.
Earlier, Najib witnessed Malaysia Airlines Bhd's pledge of support and participation in the #Negaraku initiative.
The airline is incorporating the spirit of #Negaraku in various touch points such as featuring the emblem with special livery on several of its aircraft and on boarding passes.
To inspire and honour exceptional individuals, MAS' inflight magazine will feature Malaysian heroes who have brought pride to the country.
Transport Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai said he was pleased with MAS' effort to participate in the initiative.
"When we are on the plane returning home from overseas, the pilot will wish Malaysians 'welcome home'. It is truly heart warming and no matter where you have been, one will feel happy to come home after the message," he said after the ceremony.
Malaysia Airlines Bhd chief executive officer Peter Bellew described #Negaraku as a "perfect" programme and described it as an initiative that is similar to the airline's own brand that promotes positive values.
"Negaraku is a simple Malay word that means my nation. But it means so much more than that. It speaks volumes of the pride and love that Malaysians have for each other and their country.
"Negaraku is about peace, about the people, about hard work and faith," he added.