Fruit seller Goh Ah Hao, 66, said he remembered attending the National Day parade at the Esplanade in George Town when he was young.
“It was a joyous occasion when our country first got its independence in 1957.
“People of all races gathered to celebrate the meaningful event together.
“However, as of late I feel that there is a lack of closeness among the communities.
“The government must do something to reunite the people and make them feel close once again,” he said.
Harjinder Kaur, 65, said she hoped that the leaders would focus on developing the country with fair distribution of the economic pie among all citizens.
“There should be no room for corruption and leaders must focus on ensuring the people’s well-being.
“I hope the leaders will look into reducing taxes this year.
“Many people are suffering from financial losses following the movement control order due to the Covid-19 pandemic,” she said.
Harjinder, who speaks fluent English, Punjabi, Mandarin, Malay and Hokkien, said she grew up with friends of different races.
“I have close friends from many races and we used to happily celebrate National Day together.
“This year, however, due to the pandemic, I am going to stay home and watch the parade on the television with my family,” she said when met at Cecil Street market last Friday.
Stationery shop administrative manager Wong Mei Leng, 45, said supply of the Jalur Gemilang and Penang state flags for the celebrations this year was sufficient.
“The sale of Jalur Gemilang and the state flag would usually pick up two weeks before National Day on Aug 31.
“We have small hand flags, car flags, motorcycle flags and flag buntings. These flags are available all year round, but we would usually place them in strategic places in our shop in August and September.
“We have also decided to sell our flags through our website as we adapt to the new norm.
“Business owners, entrepreneurs and wholesalers would usually get their flags two weeks before National Day,” she said.
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