KUALA LUMPUR: Former Deputy Prime Minister Tun Musa Hitam said Malaysia’s Vision 2020 objective was “falling apart” with “alarming speed”, and he blames Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad for it.
In his keynote speech at an event to mark the sixth anniversary of the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (Ideas), Musa said this was because the former premier did not train leaders but instead chose to retain and train followers instead.
“It is ironic that Dr Mahathir’s vision is now certain to fail because of Dr Mahathir himself.
“Brilliant as he was, he forgot that in order to succeed he needed to train leaders at all levels, but most importantly, political leaders.
“But his personal leadership record shows that he did away with all potential leaders, and retained and trained followers,” Musa said in his speech.
He said in the last few years, the behaviour of certain people in government and politics seemed to be based on struggles which prioritised personal survival.
“By now, we should just be about ready to cross the line of definition from ‘developing’ to ‘developed’.
“Unfortunately, though, it seems to me that the 2020 dream is falling apart with alarming speed,” he said.
Musa was Dr Mahathir’s deputy from 1981 to 1986, when he resigned due to differences with the then Prime Minister.
He then joined forces with Tengku Razaleigh Hamzah who mounted a challenge to Dr Mahathir’s position as Umno president in 1987. Dr Mahathir retained his position with a narrow majority of 43 votes at the Umno election.
Ideas chief executive Wan Saiful Wan Jan, in his speech said that the institute’s mission has been the same throughout its six years.
“It is to improve the level of understanding and acceptance of public policy based on the principles of rule of law, limited government, free markets and individual liberty”.
Ideas was set up on Feb 8 to coincide with the birth date of Tunku Abdul Rahman, who died on Dec 6, 1990 at the age of 87.
Musa Hitam: Dr M is creator and destroyer of Vision 2020
PETALING JAYA: Former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was both the creator and destroyer of Vision 2020, according to Tun Musa Hitam (pic).
Musa, who was the deputy prime minister from 1981 to 1986, said his ex-boss had undone the dream when he chose to remove potential leaders and train followers instead.
"Those followers ended up taking over the leadership of the country after he left office," he added.
"It is ironic that Dr Mahathir's vision is now certain to fail because of Dr Mahathir himself.
"Brilliant as he was, he forgot that in order to succeed, he needed to train leaders at all levels, but most importantly, political leaders.
"His personal leadership record shows that he did away with all potential leaders and retained and trained followers! It is mostly these trained followers that had taken over the leadership of the country," Musa said on Saturday.
He was speaking at a special function commemorating the 113th birthday of the nation's first prime minister, Tunku Abdul Rahman, organised by the Institute for Democracy and Economic Affairs (Ideas).
Musa said Malaysia was in its current state because of the failure of leadership, adding that the followers Dr Mahathir had groomed in his 22-year tenure were not coordinated in administering the country.
"These trained followers are dedicated and loyal to whoever sits at the very top. They need to be, in order to survive.
"It seems to me that the 2020 dream is falling apart bit by bit but with alarming speed. The way it is, I am now certain that we will not reach our goal of Vision 2020," he said.
Vision 2020 was introduced by Dr Mahathir in 1991, ten years into his tenure as prime minister, as an objective for Malaysia to attain fully-developed nation status by 2020.
The goal has remained a key objective of his successors, including present Prime Minister, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak.
Dr Mahathir, a fierce critic of Najib, however, claimed last year that the current administration would not succeed in achieving Vision 2020.
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