Hari Malaysia, Hari Kita

The birth of a new nation, founded on the common pursuit of a better life, is like a breath of fresh air. And when it is founded on the pillars of harmony, unity and prosperity, there is always a sense of anticipation accompanying it.

Would it meet the expectations of the founding fathers, or would it end in failure? This was asked of Malaysia, formed on Sept 16, 1963, that signalled a new era, promising a better and brighter future for its people.

Over the years, the people, separated by the vast South China Sea, have stood in a unity of purpose, marching towards a more meaningful existence. Our founding fathers would be proud of what we've achieved thus far, although the journey is far from over.

It wasn't a journey without hiccups and distractions. There were sacrifices, some in blood, most in hard work driven by a desire to achieve excellence and recognition. There were the usual naysayers, but our collective spirit won the day.

Today, we are 1Malaysia, diverse in culture and background; but committed to pursue real nation- building to stand tall in the world community of nations.

We do our part to create a better and safer world; we contribute towards the universal effort in search of enduring peace; we hold hands with other nations, especially our neighbours to provide a higher standard of living.

The nation's agenda is far from over. Not everyone sees eye to eye on issues; there are no unanimous agreements on some policies. But that's only to be expected in a democratic society.

On balance, we did better than some countries. We are still grappling with trying to agree to disagree, as opposed to street violence that can be disruptive and unproductive. This is our country. We live with the good and the bad. And the ugly, too.

God willing, we will rise to the occasion and stand tall to be counted. Hidup Malaysia!

By Ahmad A Talib


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