bestows "Father of National Unity" title on Dr Mahathir
8 September 2003 (Source: Bernama)
KINABALU: Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) has bestowed
the title "Bapa Perpaduan Nasional" (Father of National Unity)
on Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad for his success
in uniting the people
of various races in the country.
PBS President Datuk Joseph Pairin Kitingan said the party
appreciated what Dr Mahathir had done to ensure that the people
of various races would continue to live in peace and harmony.
"Personally, I am very impressed with YAB Datuk Seri, both
as a leader and a statesman, and what we appreciate most is
his success and his ability to unite the people of various
races in this country.
"As such, without reservation we bestow the title `Bapa Perpaduan
Nasional' to YAB Datuk Seri Dr Mahathir Mohamad," he said
at the opening of the 18th PBS Congress at the Hongkod Koisaan
Hall in Penampang near here Monday.
Pairin said the PBS not only valued Dr Mahathir's emphasis
on national integration in a plural society like Malaysia
but also his determination to promote unity based on the concept
of one big family.
On the question of leadership, Pairin said that even though
he was Dr Mahathir's "sparring partner" for some time in the
past, "I was actually a secret admirer of the Prime Minister."
He said PBS was also thankful to Dr Mahathir for administering
the country very well over the past 22 years, so much so that
Malaysia was now well known in the international arena.
"Malaysia is lucky to have a leader with such a vision, far-sightedness
"Without Dr Mahathir, there is no Vision 2020, no Look East
Policy, no Proton Saga and no administrative centre of Putrajaya,
and certainly without him we would not have succeeded in overcoming
the financial crises of 1997 and 1998 which cripped the economy
of several neighbouring countries," he said.
As for the PBS, Pairin said it would play its role in the
Barisan Nasional (BN) to help the government especially in
the implementation of the Vision 2020.
"Certainly, it is no easy task to bring progress to the whole
country. It requires a balanced approach, and patience and
diligence," he said.