Dec 14, 2008

Tun Mahathir - Leaders must take charge

PUTRAJAYA, Dec 13 — Leaders must be brave enough to take risks and decide on a suitable course of action when faced with challenges, said former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad.

He said that a credible and intelligent leader must be in the frontline to lead his subordinates and not just give orders from behind the scene.

He said leaders not only make rational decisions, but must also consider the views and sentiments of the community without putting aside what the majority wanted.

“What usually happens is, people are good leaders before they get power, but when they get it they change.

“Some think they can do whatever they want once they get power,” he said at the Leadership and Intercultural Relationship and Understanding programme with Multimedia University students at the Perdana Leadership Foundation today.

Dr Mahathir said that such leaders were only interested in personal gain and did not care much about fulfilling the country’s vision.

“It is important for leaders to always be aware of their surroundings. If not, they will lead without direction or purpose,” he said.

Citing a general at war as an example, Dr Mahathir said they must always be in the frontline, even if it meant putting their lives in danger.

“Being in the frontline we face all kinds of dangers and may be sacrificed, but that is the challenge and risk we need to bravely face.

“Those who lead from behind the scenes will not face the danger and they will not be aware of what their subordinates are going through. They will end up making decisions that are not sound or rational,” he said.

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