Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad stressed that the Bumiputera should bend their backs to earn their money instead of relying on the government for handouts.
Speaking during the Congress on the Future of Bumiputera and the Nation on Saturday (1 September), Dr Mahathir said that his new Pakatan Harapan (PH) administration will not entertain requests from those who are merely seeking to get rich quick.
He said that if Malaysians want to sit at home and wait for riches to show up on the doorstep, they can go ahead and wait forever.
"Nothing will come to those who do not work hard. If we continuously finding shortcuts to success, we are already setting ourselves for failure,” he said in his keynote speech.
Dr Mahathir also said that his coalition will not budge from this stance even if it could result in their loss at the next general election.
“Even if the government may be defeated for not succumbing to these people’s requests, it is OK for us. We are not here to do our own people wrong,” he said.
The prime minister also said that the teaching of Islamic subjects, especially in kindergartens, will emphasise the inculcation of positive values among Muslim students, noting that Islamic education in kindergartens and schools is currently focussed on the techniques of performing prayers, instead of the Islamic way of life.
"We want to empower kindergartens, because that is where we want to nurture our children. We will ensure that Islamic values will be given focus in the subject, instead of politics. (Current) Islamic education is limited to teaching certain prayers, not the Islamic way of life,” he said.
"This is what we want to change in our education system. So that it would work to build the characters (of students) according to Islamic values," the prime minister added.
He also noted many parents are too busy at work to allocate spending quality time with their children, adding, "Children today can be wild and do things not in line with positive values."