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By Mahathir Mohd Rais

What is democracy?
Everyone seems to talk about it, but not a lot of people seem to know how it truly functions.
Everyone wants to be part of it, yet the word is abused time and time again for the sake of the individual interest of each political party.
Democracy, at the very fundamental level of a governmental institute, is in which the supreme power is invested in the people and exercised by them directly or indirectly through representation.
Malaysia as a country has demonstrated the proper way how democracy should work and function.
The idea of democracy is further extended with the ability to speak freely as citizens of the country.
Article 10 of the Constitute of Malaysia guarantees that our citizens have the right to freedom of speech.
However, why is it that some political leaders are still against the idea of democracy? 
People have talked about their deep concern on the recent request made by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to Padiberas Nasional Bhd (Bernas).
Even though what was done was undoubtedly beneficial in at least one regard, the question of whether race played a part in this remains.
Is Tan Sri Syed Mokhtar Albukhary being demanded on because he is a Malay tycoon the reason for this? The multitude of other industries that need to be addressed and equally requested to share their earnings from their own individual monopolies are the reason this is being discussed among the populace.
The following step from our prime minister will need to be focused on since focusing on a particular race will lead to racial injustice and controversy.
Understanding democracy and its policies is crucial for this reason.
Despite being business moguls, we must remember that these people are Malaysian citizens who played a part in choosing the right leadership for their country.
They need to be treated fairly, and their contributions are valuable.
Being ethnically unfair and bigoted will not support the argument Pakatan Harapan is attempting to make.
For Perikatan Nasional, even when defeated, we are working as hard as we can to help build what was left of us.
What matters most is how we devote ourselves to our citizens.
We aren’t necessarily politicians because it’s our job, we are politicians because we love our country and because the people chose us to deliver their messages as they have the supreme power to do so. 
This is merely just my opinion.
I find Perikatan Nasional to be a force that could truly lead Malaysia to greatness, and that is the reason why I am here.
With the constitutional law that we have been granted, it must be understood that everything that is said is within my right.
I hope that we, Perikatan Nasional as a party, could put behind our differences and start focusing on the real issues at hand.

About the author: Mahathir Mohd Rais (pictured above) is the Information Chief of National Alliance (Perikatan Nasional) Federal Territories. This is an opinion column. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of this publication.

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