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Forget Merdeka Day, Malaysia Day enough, says Nazri

The Padang Rengas MP says this will help put an end to peninsular and Bornean sentiments.

Ahmad Mustakim Zulkifli
2 minute read
Padang Rengas MP Nazri Aziz. Photo: Bernama
Padang Rengas MP Nazri Aziz. Photo: Bernama

Padang Rengas MP Nazri Aziz today suggested that the government abolish Merdeka Day and replace it with Malaysia Day once the amendments to the Federal Constitution have been passed.

He said retaining the definition of Merdeka Day would have no meaning for the Federation of Malaysia which was formed on Sept 16, 1963.

“We must drop Aug 31 as Merdeka Day because it has caused two schools of thought – Merdeka as well as Malaysia Day.

“If we truly wish to mean Malaysia as a nation, get rid of Merdeka Day,” he said when debating the Constitution (Amendment) Bill 2021 in the Dewan Rakyat today.

Nazri also called for an end to the sentiment of differentiating between the peninsula and Sabah and Sarawak, saying the constitution is the Malaysian constitution and not the Malayan constitution.

“It’s all right to read in history textbooks that the peninsula gained independence on Aug 31, 1957, but what we should celebrate in the future is Malaysia Day so that the issue of only Sabah and Sarawak celebrating Malaysia Day will no longer arise,” he said.

The amendments to the constitution which are being read for the second time today provide, among others, a new definition of “Malaysia Day” and to change the definition of “the federation” in line with the spirit of the Malaysia Agreement 1963 signed on July 9, 1963.

Nazri, the former law minister, also said the issues arising between Putrajaya and Sabah and Sarawak need not be brought to court.

“We need external parties to make decisions,” he said, referring to the courts.

“Courts are where people go to get a divorce. Next time, if there is a problem between the federation and Sabah and Sarawak, we do not need to take it to court.

“Each party has its own ministries, what need is there to go to court?” he added in voicing his full support for the amendments.