What did my parents leave to me and my other siblings? Plenty I can say, materially and spiritually. Can we match them?
I think we are nowhere near repaying them for their unwavering sacrifice to make us good and proper human beings. My mother was there in all the trials and tribulation my father went through. Somehow or rather we didn't see her shedding her tears or made a sound to complain. She was a home maker as well a a peacemaker. She was patient and definitely understood her environment. Both of them were a perfect match, never want to show their difficulties. She would make sure we were fed and dressed appropriately, ensured that there is a balance in whatever she did. She listened well and offered advise whenever necessary. She would sit with us to tell the stories of life or narrate to us our family line. She had so many stories, the old legends or mythology. My only regret is that we sometimes took her kindness for granted.
She disciplined and infused in us good values, of morality and our commitments to religion. Actually, I have never seen my father and mother quarrel. They were so private and kept with the old traditions. I was so close to both of them and learned a lot from them. My mother and father was my motivator and enabler for everything I did. They were the ones who kept my balance and whenever necessary gave me encouragement. She would cook my father's favorites and have all the food laid on the table whenever my father had the time to eat with us.
We chatted and exchanged views on almost everything from politics, issues, religion to personalities. Never boring, he was a good communicator and could spend long hours imparting knowledge to the young on issues of significance in their struggle for dignity and to always be fearless in expressing their views on the future generation. He was the one person who would speak out to Tunku, Tun Razak, Tun Hussein and Mahathir. This was related to me by his friends and colleagues in UMNO Supreme Council. According to them, he might be hard but no one could question his sincerity. I inherited this legacy from him. Leaders may not like his criticisms but it was never personal. He spoke for religion, race and nation. He criticised on issues pertaining to the participation of the Malays in the country's economy.
He criticised the Tunku for giving away Carcosa as a gift to the British for granting independence to Malaya as to him they don't deserve it . He said it would be more right for them to pay us for colonising the country. He was against the University Colleges Act which according to him would produce robots if we restrict students' freedom. He was dead against the separation of Singapore. He was critical of the education policy and even family planning if it means we should restrict the number of children a family should have, for sure he did not do it for personal gains or grudges or political popularity. For that he kept his good relations with all the leaders even though the people around the leaders tried to build a wedge between him and the leadership.
When he won the Youth Leadership against the late Mohammad Rahmat in 1976 who was the candidate blessed by the government and party, it was a resounding victory for the youth wing of the party for making their own choice. He died a year later whilst speaking in Muar Johor reminding the youth to remain united and cohesive to be the check and balance of the government under the symbol of Ginger Group. He was not for the youth to create a party within a party. I remember him telling me if I wanted to speak freely on government policies, I must stay out of the government. In the Government, one has to speak with one voice in and out of the Cabinet. They were my icon and inspiration.
FBSHApost@14 February 2016