Red-shirt rally: 'Don't undo the work of our forefathers'

PHOTO: The Straits Times

KUALA LUMPUR - Street demonstrations featuring slogans that raise racial sentiments are not part of Malaysian tradition and must be condemned, said Yayasan Usman Awang.

Expressing its opposition to the proposed rally here tomorrow, the foundation said such a gathering could undo the work of Malaysia's founders in fostering harmony among the country's multi-racial and multi-religious people.

"Before we decide to go to the street, let us reflect on the sweat and blood of our forefathers and think of our nation," the foundation said in a statement.

The foundation, which is named after the late national laureate Usman Awang, was set up last year.

It aims to foster a wider appreciation of one of Malaysia's most famous literary figures, who promoted unity and the spirit of humanity in his works.

The foundation said Malaysia's greatest asset was its unique racial and religious diversity.

"However, this week, there will be some who will rob us of our greatest asset which was built by our forefathers for over 58 years."

Reminding Malaysians of all the work which the country's forefathers had put in to build the country to where it is now, the foundation said there was much to look forward to when the country becomes a developed country in 2020.

"At this crucial point of time, we should work together in strength to realise our common vision."