Boycott McDonald's and Starbucks? Veteran politician advocates for self-sufficiency

03 Dec 2023 02:06pm
Pix for illustration purpose only - FILE PIX
Pix for illustration purpose only - FILE PIX

SHAH ALAM - Veteran politician Datuk Mohd Zaid Ibrahim has stressed the importance of Muslims prioritising the strengthening of their own economic foundations amid passionate discussions about global issues, particularly those concerning Gaza.

Expressing his deep concern over the tragic events unfolding in Gaza Strip, Zaid highlighted the profound impact on the impoverished population, painting a vivid picture of the struggles faced by Palestinians, from the loss of land to the devastating effects on families, particularly in Gaza.

"It's very tragic. When you are poor, that's what happens to you.

"People take your land; people kill your families, and that's what happened in Gaza," he told Sinar Daily in an interview recenly.

Zaid's plea revolves around the need for Muslim communities to be economically empowered.

He sees economic strength as a key buffer against the vulnerabilities illustrated by Gaza's predicament.

Highlighting the need for Muslim leaders to continuously confront Gaza's problems, irrespective of their country's size, Zaid commended Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's efforts to increase public awareness of the Gaza bloodshed, considering them a constructive step toward bringing the Palestinian people's struggles to light.

The statement also discussed Malaysia's role in endorsing the wider Muslim cause and rejecting opposing events in Gaza.

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Zaid also called for a reduced reliance on foreign investments and stressed the value of bravery when interacting with powerful nations.

"We should strengthen ourselves not to depend on the Americans.

"How long would it be to boycott McDonald's and Starbucks? How long would it last?

"We should build a local economy, get the Muslim community strong so we can collect some money, provide medicine to Palestinians, provide arms, provide whatever to help Palestinians," he added.

He specifically brought out the current interest shown by Elon Musk in foreign investments and the enthusiasm around them in contrast to the demand for greater self-sufficiency.

Transitioning to a pragmatic tone, Zaid endorsed for concrete, practical steps rather than emotional reactions.

He stressed the necessity of building a strong local economy to accumulate resources for aiding Palestinians, be it through medical assistance, weaponry, or other forms of support.

"We must ensure our community is richer so that we can give more money to the Muslim society, give more aid, more support, practical support.

"We cannot offer a solution, as we can only help and support them. Our country is too small to offer a solution.

"So, the best next thing is for us to provide support, financial support. Less politicking is better.

"That's why I said if Pas were to join, there would be less politicking, and all the politicians would sit together and discuss ways to raise money for Palestinians.

"That would be more practical," he said.