KUALA LUMPUR: Non-governmental organisations (NGOs) championing Malay issues have mushroomed of late because there is a feeling among the Malays that Umno by itself is incapable of protecting them, said Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
“These NGOs have become more active because they seem to represent quite a number of Malay opinions,” said the former prime minister when commenting on the hardline position on Malay issues that was taken up by Pertubuhan Pribumi Negara (Perkasa), a Malay NGO led by politician Pasir Mas MP Datuk Ibrahim Ali.
On whether Perkasa was gaining more support, Dr Mahathir said: “They look like the biggest among the Malay NGOs. That means, it is the strongest but it is not as strong as Umno.”
Dr Mahathir is scheduled to launch the Selangor Perkasa tomorrow.
On why the Malay fight was more important than the Bangsa Malaysia fight as indicated in his talk at the National Library on History As A Learning Experience And An Invaluable Heritage earlier, he said that if the fight of the Malays were not made successful then the Bangsa Malaysia fight would also not be because the Malays formed the backbone as long as they were the majority.
“If they could not state their stand, other parties and races would also receive its negative effects,” he added.
In his talk, Dr Mahathir said many Malays did not know the country’s history and the fight of the Malays, questioning their own race by calling themselves “Malaysians”.
In responding to a question from the floor, he said that the mentality of the Malays had not changed.
“If they want to be rich, they will find the easiest way. If they can sell the country, they will, if they cannot, they will sell sand.”