ISKANDAR PUTERI: The National Day celebration should be a place to teach the younger generations the importance of togetherness in a country like Malaysia, say parents here.
One such parent is 35-year-old mother of three Amirah Mohd Yusof, who brought her children to the parade here so they could experience first-hand how National Day is celebrated after two years of being unable to do so due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Amirah said she had prepared her children with Jalur Gemilang themed clothes two months ago and spent around RM400 to decorate their dresses.
“We woke up around 5am and arrived here at 6am. They are so eager to be part of this because this is their first time seeing such a parade," she added.
“I want my children to know how Malaysians celebrate their National Day and show their patriotic spirit and really feel the spirit of independence,” she said when met at the parade on Wednesday (Aug 31).
Similarly, 32-year-old Nor Hashibah Muhammad Noor said that she wants her children to see the various colours of traditional clothes that represent the multi-racial background of the country.
“The parade was filled with people wearing colourful sarees, kurtas, changshan and cheongsam, batik, and songket.Rather than just watching the parade on television, it is better that they come here and experience how National Day is celebrated," she said.
Nor Hashibah said that she wants her children to grow up loving the different cultures of Malaysia and know that independence also means uniting as Malaysians.
As for 49-year-old Michelle Wong, she said that the celebrations have shown how much Malaysians have missed being together with each other and have come together to show their national spirit.
“The pandemic has taught us how important it is for us as Malaysians to work together in unity and to remain strong during difficult times. This is also a chance for us to see some of the frontliners that have done a great job of protecting us during the pandemic,” she said.
The state-level National Day celebration was also attended by Johor Mentri Besar Datuk Onn Hafiz Ghazi.
The parade started at 7.30am with participation from the Royal Malaysian Navy, Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency, police, Civil Defence Force, Fire and Rescue Department, state government office and NGOs.