THE 62nd Hari Kebangsaan celebration came to a perfect end last week. It was easily one of the most memorable events in recent times. It was more meaningful being the first since the 1MDB court case began a few days earlier. Thus the sub-theme Malaysia Bersih in tandem with the slogan Sayangi Malaysiaku, made it an even more compelling force to clean up whatever remaining “filth” left by the kleptomaniacs. It may not be easy in real life, but it can be symbolically done as demonstrated during the celebration.
There is no doubt that the credit must go largely to the 17,335-strong contingent that took the presentation by storm. They sang, they danced, waving the Jalur Gemilang all the time with a great sense of pride. They would not allow anything to come close to harming the sovereign symbol in any way. Not at all.
I dare bet that each of them will keep the flags they had for a long time to come to cherish the moment they had gone through even for the shortest period in their life. That is, Sayangi Malaysiaku come what may.
Those involved in the word formation displays were exquisite in their undertakings without a hint of any problem. Others who took part in the parade marched with a higher sense of purpose like never before. What was most impressive was that a large part of the contingent consisted of schoolchildren who came to the official venue as early as six in the morning.
So too were some of the spectators from faraway places, some nationalistically attired, to feel the celebration as it were. An estimated 300,000 people from all walks of life thronged the event. There can never be a better endorsement than that.
Not forgetting, the unsung heroes and heroines working behind the scenes long before it all started, on pieces of paper with concepts and mere ideas. These were magically and meticulously transferred into reality slowly but surely many times over through sheer dedicated practice. Not to be missed were the uniformed personnel who cracked the whip in shaping a loose “army” of mostly anak muda into disciplined patriots with an acute sense of collective mission: to deliver the 62nd Hari Kebangsaan like never before! That they did superbly, thanks to the values instilled by the discipline masters who took the bull by the horns.
At the same, we were reminded how the latter amply demonstrated that they did not just “eat and sleep” during peace time as alleged by one person who should have known better.
Thus if we can imagine away those isolated “few” then we can move to a more genuinely united Malaysia that we all long for. The distractions that we have been subjected to by the “isolationists” can now be put aside because for all these years that we tried the outcome has been pitifully dismal. In fact they became even more beholden to their isolated myopic ways at the expense of the rest who were relatively silent and peace-loving. This is in tandem with what Datuk Lee Chong Wei said recently: “Don’t let small groups spread racial hate and beat us”.
Therefore, it is time, learning from the 62nd celebratory highlights, that the silent majority must be allowed more space together to build and shape the real notion of “sharing” beyond just prosperity in the material sense. But to share our Malaysian values in the Malaysian style as we relive them like how we got Merdeka in the most unified way. That means Sayangi Malaysiaku from the heart and soul, lessons drawn from the glorious Hari Kebangsaan Ke-62.
With some four decades of experience in education, the writer believes that “another world is possible”. Comments: email@example.com