PEKAN, Feb 4 (Bernama) — Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak Saturday launched the National Service (NS) Volunteer Brigade, giving former NS trainees the opportunity to serve the society.
With about 650,000 former trainees, Najib said, the brigade has the capability to emerge as a leading voluntary body in the country.
“The brigade can be mobilised during a disaster such as flood, landslide, or fire as well as for other voluntary activities such as landscaping,” he said at the launch of the brigade in Dara Chini, near here.
Present were his wife Datin Seri Rosmah Mansor, Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Adnan Yaakob, Defence Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi and Chief of Defence Forces Gen Tan Sri Zulkifeli Mohd Zin.
Najib said he hoped that the setting up of the brigade would not only allow former NS trainees to get involved in voluntary activities but also help build their capacity in their career and life.
“The government allocates a huge sum for the NS training programme, about RM650 million annually. During the three-month training programme, the government spends an average of RM8,002 for each trainee.
“We regard this as an investment to create a pool of back-up (leaders) who possess a strong character,” he said.
The NS programme, which started in 2004, is a three-pronged strategy, namely to instill patriotism, nurture unity and national integration, and inculcate noble values among the young people based on the five pillars of the Rukun Negara (National Principles).
Najib said the government would also set up the 1Malaysia Corps to galvanise the efforts of various youth volunteer bodies, including the NS Volunteer Brigade, Rela, Civil Defence Department and Rakan Muda, in realising the 1Malaysia vision.
“We are working on this and will make an announcement soon,” he said, expressing confidence that the 1Malaysia Corps would emerge as a major volunteerism movement in the country.
Source : Bernama