KUALA LUMPUR, Feb 7 — Datuk Seri Najib Razak today urged Indian Malaysians to “trust” him to improve their lives ahead of the 13th general election.
“If you help me, I can help you. You trust me, I trust you,” the prime minister told a huge crowd of Hindu devotees attending the Thaipusam festival at the Batu Caves temple here.
The prime minister also announced that RM2 million will be allocated to build a cultural centre at the temple grounds.
“To show the government’s sincerity, I would like to announce that RM2 million will be allocated to build a cultural centre,” he said to a cheering crowd.
The Lord Muruga temple at Batu Caves draws thousands of devotees and onlookers during Thaipusam annually.
Also present were MIC president Datuk Seri G. Palanivel, Najib’s wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, Home Minister Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Hussein, Gerakan president Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon and former MIC president and Special Envoy (Infrastructure) to India and South Asia Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu.
“To see the transformation happen, to become a developed country, a high-income nation we need a partnership and that partnership that we need is between the Indian community and the government,” he said, using Indian non-governmental organisations (NGOs) such as Mynadi and the Sri Murugan Centre as examples.
“And this partnership, ladies and gentlemen, must be based on the philosophy of nambikei (Tamil for trust). If you have nambikei, then there would be no problems,” the PM said.
He pointed out that RM3.6 million was allocated two years ago to beautify and improve the facilities at Batu Caves, making it a popular tourist destination.
He also said a RM4 million project for a new building for SRJK Batu Caves has since been completed.
Najib, who is also Umno president, said his Barisan Nasional (BN) government will fulfil all its promises to the people.
“As a government, we do not break promises. If we promise to do something, the Barisan Nasional government will fulfil all of our promises, whether to the Indian community or to other races, I guarantee that every promise will be delivered.
“I stand in front of the Indian community today and I can confidently say that for the past three years our efforts to help the Indian community in every aspect have been positive because our efforts have been the greatest from us,” Najib said.
Indian Malaysians constitute about eight per cent of this multiracial, multicultural country’s 28 million population.
The prime minister is widely expected to call for elections this year even though the BN’s mandate only expires in April next year.