First Malaysia Day Celebration

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Malaysia gains its independence on 31 August 1957. We celebrate this date as National Day every year. However, to Sabah people, 16 September 1963 (a.k.a. Malaysia Day) is more matter. Sabah never “joined” Malaysia. We “formed” Malaysia with Malaya and Sarawak. Since I was a little boy, I have been hearing Sabah people complain that federal government didn’t value the meaning of Sep 16.

After 47 years, we had our first national-level celebration of Malaysia Day on last Thursday at Padang Merdeka of Kota Kinabalu, Sabah. Well, we all know why. Barisan Nasional (BN) lost a lot of seats in 308 election. Sabah and Sarawak, the “deposit” of BN votes, have become the feet of BN. They can no longer afford to ignore our voices. Whatever, at least we have one more public holiday added to the calendar. Hope everyone is happy now.

First Malaysia Day Celebration

Of course I didn’t miss the first celebration of Malaysia Day. I was quite interested in photographing the first Malaysia Day Signing Ceremony. The Malaysia Day Book has 100 pages, to be signed annually for 100 years of Malaysia Day (if our country lasts that long).

First Malaysia Day Celebration

Every government function starts with political propaganda. Prime Minister was trying to market 1Malaysia concept, though Sabah has been long practicing it.

Signing Ceremony of Malaysia Day

Prime Minister started the first signing of Malaysia Day Book. There were dozens of photographers and media went after this shot. Luckily I also got mine.

Signing Ceremony of Malaysia Day

Next is Sabah Chief Minister. Should be a great remembrance for him before retirement…

Signing Ceremony of Malaysia Day

Signed by Deputy Chief Minister of Sarawak. Hope their CM will also retire soon. Poor Penan people..

Signing Ceremony of Malaysia Day

Signed by the Sabah minister of tourism (also the organizer).

First Malaysia Day Celebration

Signing Ceremony done. This book will be kept in the museum.

First Malaysia Day Celebration

Performance followed, to show the past, present and future of Malaysia.

First Malaysia Day Celebration

Since Malaysia Day is more for East Malaysians, the show had a lot of cultural elements of Sabah and Sarawak. It’s really a Sabahan event coz the audiences left many rubbish behind, despite repeated advices from the organizer, a true reflection of Sabah people. If we don’t like people say we live on trees, please behave like a civilized human. Personally I also have seen many rich people throw rubbish out of the car windows of their expensive cars.

First Malaysia Day Celebration

It has been raining every late afternoon. Fortunately the weather was ok that day. The heavy rain came 1 hour after the end of show. Then it rains again every evening until today.

First Malaysia Day Celebration

There were too many media and photographers around, so my movement was very restricted. I could only take photos from the side.

First Malaysia Day Celebration

Buy expensive and inferior Malaysia products! Do we have choices, other than Proton, StreamyX, Bernas and SESB?

First Malaysia Day Celebration

Overall the show was ok. But the venue is terrible, too small. Imagine thousands of people flooded the area no bigger than a football field. But this venue is the place where Malaysia was declared. Hopefully next year they will hold the event in Likas Stadium. I was a bit surprised that there was no lion dance.

First Malaysia Day Celebration

Sorry I didn’t take many photos. Actually I was more interested in testing my new and cheap camera that has HD movie recording function. You may take a look at my cheap production video and let me know whether I have the potential to be a videographer. In future, I’ll try to include video in my blog. Hope it can be a nice complement to my text and photo-based travelogues. Windows Vista is so stupid coz it doesn’t come with video editing tool. I’ve to download its free Movie Maker. Then it cannot open MP4, which is a very popular format for video. I had to install a separate converter (MP4 –> AVI). Next time I’ll buy a Mac.

Video above is small version. Please Click Here to see the high resolution version.

Photos taken in Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Malaysia Borneo

2 thoughts on “First Malaysia Day Celebration

  1. Wow, you were lucky to have been on the front row. But is it the zooming power? Oh well, we all share about the 16 Sept. At least among Sabahans and Sarawakians. I was sick looking at the aftermath after the morning celebration in Sdkn. Rubbish was everywhere. The biggest failure in the education system is in shaking off the bad habit of littering, IF they went to school at all. Nice clip – my thumps up. Do more of them in the future.
    P/s: I was bracing if you were going to say someth bad about the tourism minister. Luckily u didn’t. 😀

  2. jipp> yes, i was sitting at the front with bunch of other media. haha, so far i have nothing 2 say about him.

    i found that even well-educated Sabah people also litter around. in future, i think i’ll post their photos online, for the world to see.

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