Gabungan Bertindak Malaysia (GBM) congratulates all the stakeholders of the ruling and opposition parties in the formation of the coalition government after the general election with Anwar Ibrahim as the Prime Minister.
Amid challenging times of global security and finance, people have high expectations for the new government to perform, deliver and fulfil the election promises.
GBM, as a coalition of like-minded civil society organisations, is prepared to work together with the government and other stakeholders in delivering the needed policy changes and reforms for the next five years.
GBM had captured the demands and needs of the people through numerous public consultations in developing a people-centred Manifesto Rakyat (People’s Manifesto). The manifesto was made available to the public and the candidates who stood for election. Gladly, some components overlapped with the manifesto policies of the political coalition parties. Thus it would be a good beginning for all to find common ground to set priority programmes and the agenda for implementation.
We call upon the leading coalition partner, Pakatan Harapan, to leave behind past legacies of the earlier administration and display courage and political will to do the right thing for the nation and for the people who had made the calling.
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Anwar’s slogan “Ketuanan rakyat” (People’s supremacy) is laudable and primordial to prosperity and unity. It is time to revive this spirit – what the people want from the government is about placing the people’s (public) interest above the rest.
GBM is deeply encouraged to note that PH and Barisan Nasional agreed to the majority of the top 10 demands. Displaying such needed similarities in the aspiration for change and commitment for policy reforms is highly laudable. We are on the same table to commence periodic consultations on public policies, thus paving a way forward to create a people-centred government.
We also advocate for the government and civil society to trust each other to set a new norm of functioning as a ‘whole society’ with an inclusive approach – both working for the common good while keeping the government transparent, responsive and accountable to the people.
The BN’s “Keluarga Malaysia” (Malaysian family) concept is a fitting narrative for a harmonious and progressive society. To get it right, it is crucial for the new government to fend off any form of toxic political discourse from the outset. All kinds of scaremongering, defaming and damaging behaviour have to be discouraged and diminished. The focus of the new government should be on creating a larger peace-loving civil society that would help to maintain order for peace and justice.
As a coalition of civil society organisations living in an ever maturing democratic country, GBM hopes to continue having engagements with all political parties, government agencies, civil servants, civil society organisations and communities for a common agenda.
We do not just want to have different sets of people in power, but they should have the ultimate goal of making the necessary changes for the wellbeing of the people. This new government should represent every person and be socially inclusive, while adopting needs-based policies that leave no one behind. – GBM
Stanley Yong Yew Wei is chair of Gabungan Bertindak Malaysia. This statement was issued on behalf of the executive council of GBM