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History of Malaysia Independence Day

It’s the month of August. We Malaysians, honour our Independence Day, celebrating it as a national holiday (of course!). Here’s a little quick info about the Independence Day. The independence of Malaysia was a peaceful independence attained by holding talks with the British. On August 31, 1957, Malaysia gained her independence from the United Kingdom.

The European Colonization of Malaysia started in year 1511, when the Portuguese captured Malacca. The Portuguese were in turn defeated in 1641 by the Dutch, who colonized until the advert of British in 1824. During the World War II, Japanese had colonized Malaysia too in 1941 – 1945. These left many European and Japanese influences in Malaysia later on.

Kuala Lumpur during WWII

The first Prime Minister of Malaysia, Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra spearheaded the effort for independence, leading a delegation of ministers and political leaders of Malaya (now Malaysia) in negotiations with the British in London for Independence. Agreement was reached on February 8, 1956, for Malaya to gain independence. Then the official proclamation of independence was made the next year, on August 31, 1957, at Stadium Merdeka in Kuala Lumpur. It was the day we got our freedom which was lost back in 1511. It was obtained after great struggle and long patience.

Signing the “Merdeka” Agreement
Tunku Abdul Rahman ride to Bandar Hilir Padang, Malacca to announce “Merdeka” after returning from London in 1956

On the glorious day, crowds gathered to witness the handover of power from the British. The Queen’s representative, the Duke of Gloucester presented Tunku Abdul Rahman with the instrument of independence. Tunku then proceeded to read the Proclamation of Independence, which culminated in the chanting of “MERDEKA” (Independence) seven times with the crowd joining in. The new Flag of Malaya was raised as the national anthem “Negaraku” (My Country) was played.

Tunku Abdul Rahmam chanted “Merdeka” August 31,1957

MERDEKA!
MERDEKA!
MERDEKA!
MERDEKA!
MERDEKA!
MERDEKA!
MERDEKA!!!”

Tunku Abdul Rahman, first Prime Minister of Malaysia

Courtesy of Tunku Abdul Rahman, and here goes the National Anthem of Malaysia:

“Negaraku, tanah tumpahnya darahku,
Rakyat hidup, bersatu dan maju,
Rahmat Bahagia, Tuhan kurniakan,
Raja kita, selamat bertakhta.
Rahmat Bahagia, Tuhan kurniakan,
Raja kita, selamat bertakhta.”

Sources:
Wikipedia
Google

written by lihooi

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