P. Ramakrishnan says, “Manners maketh a man”. So what happened to our values? What happened to the important things which our parents and elders taught us?
In those good old days when schools emphasized on character and good manners, they turned out individuals imbibed with values that were commendable. They grew up remembering to say “Please”, “Thank you”, “Excuse me”, “Sorry”, “May I?”, etc., which made them out to be people of character.
Over the years, somehow or rather, we have forgotten this great virtue of grace that greases our social intercourse. We now have crude and rude individuals with no manners at all. We rue the loss of this etiquette. It hits you hard when a man of standing in our society and in our midst comes across as ill-mannered and foul-mouthed!
Gutter language from “loyar” Nazri
Tourism and Culture Minister Nazri Abdul Aziz’s diatribe against Robert Kuok is shocking and dismaying. His vile and virulent attack is uncalled for in the absence of any solid evidence to cause or justify such an inexplicably intemperate outburst.
He did this without verifying the allegations in Raja Petra Kamaruddin’s unsubstantiated and scandalous articles which claimed that Robert Kuok had funded DAP to help bring down the Barisan Nasional government by overthrowing Umno.
If a man in the street gets taken in by this spurious claim by a fugitive residing in England, he can be forgiven but for a lawyer to take this as gospel truth is mind-boggling. There was no shred of evidence – or even a remote possibility – that Robert Kuok could have funded DAP to bring down the Barisan Nasional.
This is why we are utterly disappointed and baffled that Nazri had gone on a tirade against Kuok without the benefit of hard facts and solid evidence to justify his no-holds-barred assault on Kuok.
Didn’t he say in 2013, “I have a few hats to wear – politician, social worker, lawyer. But I am a lawyer first above everything else, even above my political party.”
If he was a lawyer first and foremost, wouldn’t it be his duty to ensure that whatever Raja Petra wrote was verified truth, nothing but the truth, before he went on a rampage to run Robert Kuok down? He disparaged Robert Kuok in an uncharacteristic manner of a lawyer of some standing. It was shocking coming from him.
The language that he had chosen to mount his attack is unbelievable. Calling Kuok a ‘pondan’, a ‘betina ayam’, someone ‘without testicles’, “a coward” is unbecoming of a Cabinet Minister. He comes across as uncouth, uncultured and ill-mannered. His seeming bravado does nothing to enhance his credibility or maturity. On the other hand, he comes across as a blabber-mouth.
His pompous manner and couldn’t-be-bothered attitude do him no credit befitting a Member of Parliament.
If Nazri for whatever reason wanted to criticize Kuok, that is his right. He should have had some good sense to do so with a finesse in language keeping with his status as a Member of Parliament and a Cabinet Minister. He should have had irrefutable proof and evidence for flying off the handle. Instead, he resorted to gutter politics with his foul-mouth without verifying Raja Petra Kamaruddin’s lies.
People see him as insolent and arrogant. And they may even conclude that he is a lout.
It is said, “People get to know about who you are, by your manners, polite behaviour, and polished etiquette. … Manners maketh the man. Nothing is worse or more unbecoming than a man with poor manners.”
MP or thug?
The CIMB Bank chairperson Nazri Razak, who is no less than the Prime Minister’s brother, described Robert Kuok as “a patriot, the icon of Malaysian business and a first-class gentleman.” He claimed that he was “lucky enough” to have spent time with Robert Kuok over “many years.”
The longest serving former International Trade Minister, Rafidah Aziz, refers to him as a man of integrity, honesty and ethics. “I never saw him in any light other than as a person whose principles and values the younger generation should emulate,” said Rafidah.
To run down a man of such stature and standing rather callously and rudely reflects very poorly on Nazri. It shows up a thuggish behaviour which must be roundly condemned by Malaysians who have a high regard and respect for exemplary conduct.
Nazri was not only lacking in good manners but surprisingly was also bereft of logic. Why should Nazri challenge Robert Kuok to contest in the forthcoming GE14? Is it his contention that all critics must take part in the elections? What utter rubbish!
And what right has Nazri asking Robert Kuok to surrender his citizenship? Why should a man who is viewed as a patriot renounce his citizenship?
Robert Kuok has denied funding the DAP and Lim Kit Siang has also denied receiving any money from Robert Kuok. On top of that, Raja Petra Kamarudin has been ordered to take down his scandalous articles thus clearly establishing the fact that those articles were nothing but lies! Raja Petra Kamarudin had taken down the articles without a whimper.
Where is you apology, Nazri?
Now that it has been established that there was no truth to those articles, shouldn’t Nazri, like a gentleman, apologise to Robert Kuok and the DAP? But he has stubbornly refused to do so. That doesn’t speak well for his character.
Indeed, he makes a mockery of his own lofty proclamation, “If I have done something wrong, I will apologise but if I know that my stand is a principled stand, I will hold my ground, no matter what people say about me.”
Do you still insist that you were not wrong in attacking Robert Kuok based on Raja Petra Kamarudin’s concocted lies and that yours was a principled stand in this issue?
Didn’t you say way back in August 2015, “My views are independent because I believe that what is right is right and what is wrong is wrong, so I will always tell it as it is,” he said.
Were you right in “telling it as it is”? You have unjustly denigrated a man who is highly regarded as “a patriot, the icon of Malaysian business and a first-class gentleman,” “a man of integrity, honesty and ethics,” “a person whose principles and values the younger generation should emulate.”
Do you still insist that you don’t owe him an apology?
You must decide
Malaysians must decide whether people like Nazri deserve to be elected once again. Would they want someone like him to represent Malaysians who have a strong sense of shame, who appreciate what is right and wrong?
It is time for thinking, feeling and caring Malaysians to take a bold stand without fear or favour. They must condemn politicians who tarnish our dignity with their brutish behaviour, who muddle our politics and bring shame to our way of life.
Let’s act taking courage in the words of Robert Kennedy: “Every time we turn our heads the other way when we see the law flouted, when we tolerate what we know to be wrong, when we close our eyes and ears to the corrupt because we are too busy or too frightened, when we fail to speak up and speak out, we strike a blow against freedom and decency and justice.”
(The views expressed are those of the contributor)
P. Ramakrishnan, Penang, 9 March 2018
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