IN August and September, we celebrate the anniversary of Merdeka Day and formation of Malaysia respectively. Every year, enthusiastic Malaysians fly the national flag, and some also put up the flag of their respective states, to show patriotism for their country.
All this is well and good if the flags used are in proper condition. But there are tattered flags that seem to have been left over from the previous year’s Merdeka Day and Malaysia Day celebrations that are being flown. This shows that some people just want to display their national or state symbols irrespective of their physical condition, which is shameful indeed.
In my opinion, flying torn or tattered national or state flags is unpatriotic. I believe it is better not to fly the flag at all if this is the attitude of the owners of the premises.
The national and state flags are symbols of pride for our nation and states, and their condition should reflect that importance.
I suggest that local government authorities and the police penalise owners and tenants of premises who display flags that are not in good condition. The penalty could be in the form of fines or even temporary suspension of their business licences until the necessary remedial measures have been taken.
If there is no law or regulation that mandates people to show respect to these national and state symbols or to upkeep their physical condition, then the national and state law makers and Attorney General’s Chambers should urgently address this neglect.
Meanwhile, those who continue to fly tattered flags should be sternly reminded that it is wrong to do so and instructed to remove them from public view without delay.
DR SARFRAZ M. HUSSAIN
Mantin, Negri Sembilan
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