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Sunday, October 25, 2009

M'sia Day declared a national holiday

Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak has declared

that Malaysia Day which falls on Sept 16 annually will be a national public holiday from next year.

He told Dewan Rakyat Monday that the formation of Malaysia as an independent and sovereign country was an important chapter in the nation's history.

"As such, Malaysians will celebrate a twin national holiday. Merdeka Day on Aug 31 which reminds us of the fight for independence from the colonialists will be celebrated with processions and so forth.

Malaysia Day is celebrated annually on Sept 16 to remind of the formation of the federation of Malaysia following the inclusion of Sabah and Sarawak in 1963.

Najib was replying to a question by Datuk Dr Marcus Mojigoh (BN-Putatan) who wanted to know about the people's acceptance of 1Malaysia and programmes needed to achieve it.

"The formation of Malaysia as an independent and sovereign country was an important chapter in the nation's history. We want the joy and sorrows of Sabah and Sarawak people to be felt by those in peninsula."

UPKO hails the announcement

United Pasok Momogun Kadazandusun Murut Organisation (Upko) hailed the Prime Minister's announcement of Sept 16 as a national holiday as being long overdue.

The decision by the government goes a long way to putting right what I have always called a distortion of history," said its president, Tan Sri Bernard Dompok in his blog.

It is time also to remember the founding fathers of this nation, Tun Fuad Stephens, the President of the then Upko, announced the Declaration of Malaysia on September 16, 1963 in Jesselton as Kota Kinabalu was then known.

"He had prior to this declaration, chaired the Inter-Governmental Committee (IGC) which had in its membership leaders from Malaya, North Borneo, Sarawak and Singapore. The IGC was the forum for the discussion of the terms and conditions for the formation of the new nation to be named Malaysia," he said.

In this respect, Dompok said Upko wished to restate that its guiding philosophy is the pursuit of the aspirations upon which this nation was formed.

"The Malaysia Agreement of 1963 and the consequential Federal Constitution contain the wishes of the people of Sabah expressed through various forum including the Twenty Points.

Study on TYT's b-day

A study will be conducted to see if it is necessary to shift Head of State's official birthday to another date now that September 16 has been recognised as Malaysia Day and a national holiday.

"We have expressed our appreciation to the Prime Minister's announcement. The Cabinet will have to study this matter before making any changes," said Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman when asked for comment.

IDS: Shifting TYT’s Bday is a wise move

According to Institute Development Studies (IDS) Sabah Chairman, Datuk Clarence Bongkos Malakun, “shifting the present Head of State's official birthday to another date, now that September 16 has been declared as Malaysia Day, will be a wise move.”

"It (now) will not be proper to coincide the Head of State's birthday (because Sept. 16 is being celebrated as Malaysia Day)," he said.

"I support the Chief Minister saying that a study will be conducted whether to set a new date for Sabah to celebrate the Head of State's official birthday," he said Wednesday.

Malakun, who is also President of the National Council of the Justices of the Peace, Malaysia and President of the Council of Justices of the Peace, Sabah, said should the Government decide to set a new date, it should preferably not fall during the fasting month.

He added that credit should also be given to Putatan MP Datuk Dr Marcus Mojigoh as Najib made the announcement while replying to his question in the Dewan Rakyat on Monday.

"The fact that the Prime Minister and the Federal Cabinet now recognise September 16 as Malaysia Day and a public holiday for the whole country is a recognition of the importance of both Sabah and Sarawak within the Federation of Malaysia," he said.

Malakun said that the Prime Minister was indeed living up to his slogan of 1Malaysia.

"All leaders from Sabah and Sarawak, who have voiced support for (greater recognition from the Federal Government) September 16 should be congratulated for their perseverance on the matter," he said.

PBS: Two-in-one Celebration, not necessary for another public holiday

However, shifting the date of the Head of State's official birthday from September 16 to another day is not appropriate although it has been declared as Malaysia Day by the Federal Government, said Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) Chief Information Officer, Datuk Johnny Mositun.

According to Mositun, “Sept. 16 should be a two-in-one celebration - to celebrate Malaysia Day and the Head of State's official birthday.”

KDCA Rebuttal

Meanwhile, Jeoffrey Ekol, KDCA Supreme Council member questioned the rationale for having and celebrating two national public holidays on August 31 and September 16. (BP Wednesday , October 21).

However, the KDCA distanced itself from the statement made its Supreme Council member Jeoffrey Ekol as his statement expressed was totally his own, and nothing to do with the association.

“KDCA wishes to clarify that whatever was expressed pertaining to the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s declaration of both August 31 (Independence Day) and September 16 (Malaysia Day) as national public holidays worthy of national celebrations was completely Jeoffrey Ekol’s personal views and does not reflect the official viewa and stand of the KDCA’s as an association,” Suman Yasambun, KDCA Secretary General said. (DE Friday, October 23.)


  1. Alas! Thanks be to God that Sabah and Sarawak's independence on 16th September 1963 was declared a national public holiday after 46 years and can be celebrated every year as "Malaysia Day" from next year 2010.

    North Borneo or Sabah is believed to come from the biblical name Saba, pls cite the Holy Bible, "Psalm 72, Verse 10: The Kings of Tharsis and of the isles shall give presents, the Kings of Arabia and Saba shall bring gifts."

    The last time Malaysian celebrated "Malaysia Day" was on 17th September 1963, where the Heads of all the 14 States of the new Malaysia assembled in the Merdeka Stadium in Kuala Lumpur for the formal proclaimation of the admission of the three states (Singapore, Sabah and Sarawak) to Malaysia. On a long dais in the centre of the stadium sat the Malay Rulers and the Governors with the Yang di-Pertuan Agong, the "Supreme Head" of Malaysia, in the centre. Tunku Abdul Rahman, the then Prime Minister of Malaysia, proclaimed that "as from the 16th September 1963...,Malaysia". The new flag of Malaysia, with its 14-pointed star and crescent and 14 red and white stripes, was raised to the playing of the national anthem.

    All these historic events were documented in the film show produced by Filem Negara Malaysia with the logo "Jumping Tiger". For the benefit of the younger generation, it is worth to broadcast it over RTM, TV3, NTV7 and ASTRO Channels.

    In my opinion, September 16 or known as "Malaysia Day" recently declared as a national public holiday is due to the political will of the people of Sabah and Sarawak.

    As a result of the March 8 2008 General Election, Sabah and Sarawak have 54 Parliament seats, all Barisan Nasional. Without Sabah and Sarawak, Barisan Nasional will have only 86 Parliament seats in Peninsula Malaysia, a majority of just four seats over the oppositions.

    And without Sabah and Sarawak, Barisan Nasional cannot form the Government, not even with a simple majority. Thus Sabah and Sarawak have held a crucial deciding factor to return Barisan's simple majority during the last election.

    Owing to this, itulah PM Najib betul-betul mau piara dan ambil hati rakyat Sabah dan Sarawak skrang macam juga pada 1963 bila Malaya ambil hati orang-orang Sabah dan Sarawak to form Malaysia because to off-set the Singapore's Chinese population. I think history is repeating itself, ka mai dii.

    Going back to the TYT's birthday date, you know I went and looked my old diaries of the early 1980s and found out that the TYT's Birthday was on 10th September. Well, its look like it also fall on the month of September and I hope the current State Govt will consider this date.

  2. Is it necessary to celebrate the governor's birthday? We don't have to inherit everything from the British.

  3. yes true. it should be declared a long time along. but better late than never... hmm...