Source: Allianz, 12 September 2020
In conjunction with the 50th anniversary of the Rukunegara, PUSAKA and Allianz Malaysia Berhad (Allianz Malaysia) launched the first book of the Projek Bina Bangsa series, Rukunegara: A Brief Introduction. Written by Eddin Khoo, the son of eminent historian, the late Emeritus Professor Tan Sri Datuk Dr. Khoo Kay Kim who was one of the drafters of the Rukunegara, the book aims to explore the history surrounding the national principles which were introduced on 31 August 1970 to foster unity among Malaysians.
Besides the unveiling of the book, the launch included a video presentation about Projek Bina Bangsa, a reading of excerpts of the book by Eddin, as well as a dialogue between Eddin Khoo and Allianz Malaysia Berhad Chief Executive Officer, Zakri Khir, reflecting on history and its resonance for our society in contemporary times.
“The lack of collective memory is one of the great wounds of this country. We need to remember that we were a community long before we were a nation. The Rukunegara should urge all Malaysians to embrace our collective memory beyond the confines of official history,” said Eddin.
“My passion for history comes from living in the shadows of heroes such as Yusof Ishak (first President of Singapore), Aziz Ishak (first Minister of Agriculture), Tan Sri Razali Ismail (former ambassador to the United Nations) and of course my late father, Mohd Khir Ismail, a history teacher who made me realise, how our past impacts the future of our nation. As a corporate figure I have never forgotten this and that is why this project was something I was eager to support in my capacity as an industry captain,” said Zakri.
“It is important that corporates, such as Allianz Malaysia, play an active role in advocating diversity, unity, and inclusivity in our engagements and initiatives. We are very proud to be part of Projek Bina Bangsa’s initiative and aspirations in fostering a harmonious society through education. These books are more important, now more than ever, as we enter a decisive decade. It is with a full heart that we hope that the shared appreciation and love of history be our guide towards progress and unity,” added Zakri.
Rukunegara: A Brief Introduction will be available through online orders at [email protected] starting 14 September, and will be available at major bookstores at the end of September.
A public education initiative by PUSAKA, supported by Allianz Malaysia Berhad, Projek Bina Bangsa seeks to harness intellectual depth and an historical understanding in nurturing an awareness of what it means to be Malaysian.
Through 10 books that explore the foundations of the Malaysian nation, Projek Bina Bangsa provides essential material for public education and a broader discussion on Malaysia’s history, present and future. The other titles in the series include The Malayan Union, The Making of the Malayan Constitution, The Formation of Malaysia, The National Language Act and National Cultural Congress, The Malacca Digest, The Treaty of Pangkor, The Malay Reservation Enactment 1913, The New Economic Policy, and Wawasan 2020.
This initiative aims to engage with Malaysian youth, students, civil society groups, media, public representatives, and the wider public in workshops, conversations and reflections on Malaysian history and collective life.