(Kuala Lumpur, Sunday): This unprecedented mass head-shaving ceremony as part of the grand finale of the Support, Sympathy and Solidarity with Lim Guan Eng campaign is to send out the message, loud and clear to all and sundry: Keep Justice Alive, Keep Guan Eng Free!
Today is probably the last day of Lim Guan Eng’s freedom, for if the Federal Court upholds the Court of Appeal conviction and 36-month jail sentence, then Guan Eng will begin his jail sentence at the Kajang Prisons tomorrow.
It is no more a day-by-day countdown for Guan Eng. It is an hour-by-hour countdown, and by tomorrow, a minute-by-minute countdown as to whether Guan Eng has to start serving his jail sentence for diligently, conscientiously and courageously discharging his duties as a Member of Parliament to defend the honour, human rights and women rights of a 15-year-old girl.
If Guan Eng goes to Kajang Prisons to start his jail sentence tomorrow, he will be the living symbol of a modern-day Malaysian leader who has sacrificed his personal freedom to defend the weak and defenceless, regardless of race or religion.
All Malaysian leaders must rise transcend race and religion, but this is easier said than done. Which Malaysian political leader since Independence 40 years ago had stood up for the rights of a Malaysian of another race or religion in the way that Guan Eng had done, and paying a heavy price for it.
Can we think of another Malaysian leader who have done what Guan Eng has done, whether a Malay leader going to jail and getting disqualified as a Member of Parliament for standing up for the rights of a Malaysian Chinese or Indian, or an Indian leader losing his personal liberty for standing up for the rights of a Malaysian Chinese or Malay, or another Chinese leader being persecuted and prosecuted for fighting for the fundamental rights of a Malaysian Indian or Malay?
That Malaysian leaders must be leaders of the people of all races have just been mere all talk so far - but Guan Eng will be the first Malaysian political leader who have put it into practice and being punished for it!
Next week, Malaysia will be celebrating our 41st National Day and there will be a lot of speeches about national unity and the need for Malaysians to rise above their narrow ethnic, religious and linguistic enclaves. All these rhetoric and pious statements are nothing compared to what Guan Eng has done, putting into actual practice all these rhetoric and pious statements about being a true Malaysian who is prepared to go to the help and defence of another Malaysian, regardless of race, religion, status, gender or age!
The 41st National Day will have special meaning if the whole nation honours Guan Eng as the sole living example of a Malaysian leader who has practised this creed of Malaysia’s National Day - the only example of a national political leader laying down his political career and personal liberty to defend the fundamental rights and human dignity of a Malaysian of another race - in this case, a 15-year-old girl who is victim of a statutory rape by the high and mighty!
Guan Eng in Kajang Prisons on National Day on August 31 will have done more than all Malaysians outside Kajang Prisons to put into practice the National Day creed that Malaysians must rise above racial and religious considerations to feel, think and act as a Malaysian, first and last!
There is only one week to go before the 41st National Day celebrations. If Guan Eng goes starts his jail sentence tomorrow, then Malaysians should celebrate the National Day this year in a special manner by honouring Guan Eng’s spirit, example and sacrifice as a Model Malaysian.