Although Sabah and Sarawak gained their independence on 31 August 1963, Hari Kemerdekaan is a significant date throughout Malaysia. On this day, Malaysians from all backgrounds, race and religion celebrate together in a harmonious way. Traditionally, a grand and colourful parade is held at the Merdeka Square in Kuala Lumpur, where people can attend and celebrate. Various government agencies and private sectors join together to participate in the parade. They will march in front of the Yang Di-Pertuan Agong (the King), ministers, special guests and a sea of spectators. Similarly, other parades are also held in different states.
Each year, there will be a different theme for the Merdeka celebration. For 2011, the theme will be “1 Malaysia, Transformasi Berjaya, Rakyat Sejahtera” (1 Malaysia, Transformation Success, People Peace). This theme is in conjunction with the concept of 1Malaysia, touted by the Prime Minister, Dato’ Seri Najib Tun Razak. All Malaysians are urged to embrace the concept of transformation which brings about a meaningful process of innovation that can benefit the people. It will also help continue the process of producing a vibrant young generation.
This year’s celebration will mark the 54th anniversary of Malaysian independence. During the Merdeka month, the Malaysians will also show their patriotism towards the country by raising the Malaysian flag wherever possible - along the streets, houses, office premises and also vehicles.
A Brief History of Malaya Independence
The effort for independence was spearheaded by Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra Al-Haj, the first Prime Minister of Malaysia. He led a delegation of ministers and political...