PUTRAJAYA, Aug 13 — Dirty and foul-smelling toilets along with litter reflect the country’s lack of civic mindedness, Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad said today.
Claiming he checks on the state of public toilets when he uses them, Dr Mahathir said he regularly found these to be in appalling conditions and urged Malaysians to realise their lack of consideration for others.
“I am very embarrassed when I often inspect the public toilets in Malaysia to see whether it is clean or not, and most of them aren’t and (are) smelly.
“Nowadays we also see a lot of littering and trash around us there is so much that civic awareness that can do to help create a better environment for us to live in,” Dr Mahathir said in his speech during the launch of national-level civics education here today.
Failure to adopt civic mindedness would lead to individuals behaving with impunity, he said before warning that this could then devolve into chaos when members of society stop caring for each other.
“For example if we take what is not ours and it is normal for it to be done and we do it because we think no one sees us doing it or action won’t be taken against us.
“If we have such an attitude where we can take what is not ours, then today we take what belongs to others, and the next time others will take what belongs to us,” he said.
Under the new policy, civics will be taught in schools for an hour each month and incorporated as part of other subjects in the school syllabus.