By Nigel Edgar
KUCHING, Nov 1: The people are advised not to rely on spoon-feeding all the time if they are to assume a place in the international community.
Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg said those who aim to achieve success, especially in the business community, should be bold in seizing the opportunities before them.
Speaking during the opening ceremony of the International Conference on Sarawak and Asean this morning, he said there is a need for the people to find the inner strength within themselves as their future is in their own hands, and not others.
“There is no free lunch. For us to assume our place in the international community, much more needs to be done. In this appeal, I ask our people not to expect the state nor federal government to come around to hold our hands. There is a need for each one of us to find the inner strength within ourselves to take hold of our own futures in the grasp of our hands.
“We must go boldly despite the risk and uncertainties, and seize the opportunities before us. Only then will we see tangible changes in our beloved state – when each and every Sarawakian rises up together,” Abang Johari said in his address.
He said it has been the aspiration of every Sarawakian to be on the same footing as those living in the developed world, adding that Sarawakians have the potential to be so if they put in a good amount of effort.
“Our people certainly have the potential. We pride ourselves for being resilient, resourceful, and united. Sarawakians thoroughly deserve better lives,” he added.
In relation to that, Abang Johari stressed that for that to happen Sarawakians and the state government need to build strong bilateral ties not only with Asean member states but also the rest of the world.
This is because each country presents its own unique opportunity for trade and investment.
“For this to occur, Sarawak not only needs to move more aggressively to create conditions needed to enable ourselves to improve continuously, but also share the same benefits with the international community, just as how it has shared with the rest of Malaysia.
“Therefore, I invite our non-Malaysian friends to dialogue with us, so that we can explore new opportunities together.
“On our part, we can assure the world that Sarawak has much to offer, as it has proven time and time again,” he assured. — DayakDaily