On first day of Muslim fasting, PM urges civil servants to resist temptation

Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad speaks to civil servants during his monthly address at the Prime Minister’s Department in Putrajaya May 6, 2019. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri
Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad speaks to civil servants during his monthly address at the Prime Minister’s Department in Putrajaya May 6, 2019. — Picture by Ahmad Zamzahuri

PUTRAJAYA, May 6 — Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad exhorted civil servants to stand strong against the draw of corruption, during his monthly address at the Prime Minister’s Department here today.

Coincidentally on the first day of Ramadan, Dr Mahathir said public workers should take the opportunity to develop self-restraint and willpower.

“Besides not eating during the day, fasting trains us to deter all bad thoughts and be free from temptation,” said Dr Mahathir.

“Fasting means being disciplined; control yourself from doing bad things even though the temptations may be strong.

“If you can’t control these urges you will give in easily to corruption, which is wrong.”

Flanked by Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail and Ministers in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Mujahid Yusof Rawa and P. Waytha Moorthy, the PM said those who succumbed to temptation were weak.

While the Ramadan fast is unique to Islam, Dr Mahathir said other religions also teach the same values of restraint, integrity, and discipline.

The PM added that fasting was not purely about resisting food but also to inculcate trustworthiness and reliability.

Dr Mahathir said honesty and integrity would improve Malaysia’s image globally, which would in turn benefit the nation.

“If we can show the world that we as Malaysians can avoid giving in to temptations then I am sure we will be trusted by the entire world,” said Dr Mahathir.

“If we reject the bad and do only good we will gain the world’s trust and the benefits are endless. So, on this auspicious day of Ramadan, I wish all of you Selamat Berpuasa.”

Dr Mahathir has repeatedly drummed into civil servants that they must begin shifting their loyalties to Pakatan Harapan as the government of the day.

The prime minister alleged several times last week that some in the civil service were resisting the new administration as the crackdown on corruption has denied them the illicit income they enjoyed under Barisan Nasional.

A recent Ipsos survey found that Malaysians’ concern about corruption in the government fell from 47 per cent last year to just 32 per cent now.

The previous BN administration mired the country in an ongoing global corruption scandal linked to the 1MDB state investment firm.