Malaysia’s space hero not averse to politics

February 29th, 2008 - 12:15 am ICT by admin  

Kuala Lumpur, Feb 28 (IANS) Malaysia’s space hero Sheikh Muszaphar Shukor Sheikh Mustapha, sent on a space flight last year, is not averse to joining politics, media reports said Thursday, in the run-up to the general election. “If joining politics is a way of making this world a better place, then I will never hesitate to be a part of it,” said Mustapha, hailed as the country’s first “angkasawan,” who is now pulling crowd at election rallies of the ruling coalition Barisan Nasional (BN).

But he said it was “still too early” for him to make any plans to venture into politics.

“I am going to share my knowledge and experience from the angkasawan space programme,” The New Straits Times quoted him as saying.

The Selangor-born astronaut said he tried to avoid talking about politics while on his road tour despite the current election fever.

“I love all the attention I get from people as, wherever I go. They would come up to me for an autograph, picture or a simple chat on my experience at space.

“During my visits to rural areas, many villagers and young children approach me. When I see the glow in their eyes, I am inspired.

“It gives me pleasure when 5-year-olds tell me they, too, want to go to space,” the astronaut said.

When it was suggested that being a well-known figure, and a good looking one at that would help him do well in politics, Sheikh Muszaphar laughed, the newspaper said.

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