PUTRAJAYA: The much talked about outfit worn by the Malaysian contingent at the Tokyo 2020 Olympics opening ceremony was designed by the Art and Design Faculty of Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UiTM).
According to an infographic on the National Sports Council Facebook page, the attire was inspired by the legendary Malay warrior, Hang Tuah.
“The design was given a fresh look with a geometric pattern and vibrant colours.
“The styling – complete with tanjak (traditional Malay headgear), baju sikap (outer coat) and sampin – reflects the love and pride for Malaysia and her national costume,” the infographic said.
For the women, the ensemble came complete with a dokoh (tiered pendant) and selendang (shawl).
“The chevron geometric pattern reflects the clear mission of the Malaysian team to achieve the country’s medal target.
“The colours of the attire were adapted from the Jalur Gemilang,” it added.
A Youth and Sports Ministry official confirmed that the attire was designed by UiTM.
“We engaged UiTM to design it and we have made this public,” said the official.
This quashes a claim that the individual behind the design of the outfit is Olympic Council of Malaysia’s secretary-general Datuk Mohd Nazifuddin Najib.
Nazifuddin is the son of former prime minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak.
During the opening ceremony on Friday night, the athletes wore a dark red coat over a colourful long skirt for the women, while the men wore a tanjak and sampin in the same material.
Social media was abuzz with comments about the design, with some giving it their thumbs up while others did not agree.
On the mixed response, the officer said everyone is entitled to his or her own opinion.
“Everyone’s taste is different. There are those who criticised the design but there are also many who liked it,” the official said.