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Victory for the people! A new horizon unfolds for Malaysia

Photograph: Sumisha Naidu/CNA

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And so, the Barisan Nasional coalition helmed by Najib Abdul Razak was vanquished by the stroke of midnight on 9 May 2018, after six decades, writes JD Lovrenciear.

The 2018 general election was a tough battle for Malaysians.

That in itself is an understatement considering how the country ran into debts so huge in such a short time and felt almost under siege.

Malaysians endured. They are the champions now.

Despite the threats of stifling laws against media freedom; despite the tempting inducements of contracts, salary increments, bonuses, cheap groceries and lucky draws offering an assortment of prizes including vehicles, we refused to buckle.

Despite heaps of promises of tax exemptions, waivers of highway tolls and many more promises, we did not give up the struggle for clean, fair and just governance.

Despite the yoke of a mismanaged economy, Malaysians marched steadfast to the polls with one single psalm on their lips: enough was enough.

And so, the Barisan Nasional coalition helmed by Najib Abdul Razak was vanquished by the stroke of midnight on 9 May 2018, after six decades during which Malaysians gave it the benefit of doubt.

With the opposition pack under the tested, proven and maverick career politician, Dr Mahathir Mohamad, the people found their lifebouy for seeing a new horizon in their political journey.

As morning breaks on this day 10 May 2018, millions of Malaysians who were exhausted by the teasing suspense and piles of ridicule from the Najib administration over the past 10 years will now rise to a whole new journey of hope.

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The incoming government must redress, remedy and set the country back on its constitutional pathway.

The independence of the three cornerstones of democracy, ie the judiciary, the legislature and the executive needs to be restored.

The fight against corruption must be dealt with such decisiveness starting from the top all the way down to ordinary citizens.

Ethics, integrity, accountability and transparency cannot anymore remain as icing on a government for these must now be the very ingredients of the New Malaysia for all Malaysians.

There is much to do. But let us celebrate with songs of gratitude through our respective faiths; let us chain-lock our hands as one people of one nation who are no more coloured and blinded by religion, race and social class barriers.

Let us thank the many leaders who gave Malaysians the voice and the light along this past period of severe risks and losses, pain and uncertainties.

And of course a big thank you to Mahathir and the leaders of the other coalition partners, namely Anwar Ibrahim, Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail, Lim Kit Siang and Mohamad Sabu.

Praise too for all the great leaders of civil society groups who gave us Malaysians the strength to prevail.

There is much to do for our beloved country. Let us do it like there is no tomorrow. For opportunities to see a new horizon do not knock twice.

This Asian Tiger is here to be heard all over again. We have set the standard for starters:

Peacefully we regained our rights.
United despite divisive attempts we persevered.
We are Malaysians.

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