Sara Petra: I need the youth to understand that circumstances change with time

Following are excerpts of an interview Raja Sara Petra gave The Third Force on the 3rd of March 2018. The interview follows a decision by the daughter of Raja Petra Kamarudin to contest the Segambut parliamentary seat using the Gerakan ticket this coming general election (GE14)


Give us a little background about yourself, Sara. Where were you born, where did you grow up, what is your educational background and what did you do before deciding to join the political fray?

Well, I graduated from the London Middlesex University with a Bachelors (Hons) in Marketing Communications right after I completed my Diploma in Multimedia, Advertising & Broadcasting at the Limkokwing University of Creative Technology. I was with the advertising/branding industry for six years before I decided to follow in the footsteps of three generations of my family and serve the country I was born in.

Oh, and lest I forget, I was born in Terengganu, in a kampung next to a beautiful river where 80% of the population comprises fishermen and farmers. But I grew up in Kuala Lumpur.

Tell us how you became interested in politics. What were your early experiences, and what drove you to consider contesting the election?

I think it had a lot to do with my dad. You know, I grew up watching him get arrested and go in and out of jail. Can you imagine what that felt like, seeing the man you look up to having to go through all that agony?

During a TV interview with ABC Australia, I told the host that I did not understand why my father was doing what he did and what good that brought the family. Today, 20 years on, I totally understand that every Malaysian, like the three generations before me, must do their bit for Malaysia. I have my mother to thank for that also.

You see, it was she who taught me to see things through the lenses of objectivity back when my father was arrested. Because of her, I did not end up being a rebel without a cause like the children of some other politicians who whine just about everything rather than working towards nation building. They talk about reform, but all I see them do is deform.

It is with this awareness that I decided to join politics. I need the youth to understand that circumstances change with time, that at the end of the day, our mission is to contribute towards nation building as a Malaysian race and not to point fingers at others without lifting even one for the country.

Why did you choose Gerakan? 

My grandfather, Raja Kamarudin bin Raja Sir Tun Uda, voted for Gerakan in 1969 in spite of my great-grandfather being the Governor of Penang and very close to Tunku Abdul Rahman and Tun Razak Hussein, PM Najib’s father. And the reason he voted for Gerakan, and not for Umno, was because he believed in a multi-racial Malaysia. That was almost 50 years ago!

So it is logical that if I choose to go into politics, it would be through a multi-racial party. But I would prefer if we can call Gerakan a non-racial party rather than a multi-racial party because the term multi-racial itself is racial.

Some ask me why not DAP, which is also a multi-racial party. Who says DAP is a multi-racial party? DAP’s P. Ramasamy, the Penang Deputy Chief Minister 2, did say, “The question is how to cripple the DAP, the strongest non-Malay opposition front in the country; the party that has rendered other non-Malay political parties within the BN totally ineffective.”

So you see, a very senior man in DAP himself admited that Pakatan Harapan is a “non-Malay opposition front” while DAP “has rendered other non-Malay political parties within the BN totally ineffective.” DAP admits it is non-Malay and Pakatan Harapan is also a non-Malay opposition front. So how can you say DAP, or even Pakatan Harapan, is multi-racial? It is not multi-racial. It is non-Malay-centric.

To be continued tomorrow…