Ipoh Echo sent its team to check out the various state-level Merdeka Day celebrations from the eve to the big day. Besides displaying the indomitable Merdeka spirit in line with this year’s theme ‘Sehati Sejiwa’ (One Heart, One Soul), Ipohites of all ages and ethnicities also shared with us their hopes for Malaysia:
The second Merdeka Cycling organised by the Ipoh City Council was held on Sunday, August 30 at 8pm at the Dataran Bandaraya Ipoh. Over a thousand participants with their LED bike lights blinking took part. The cyclists were flagged off by HRH Sultan Nazrin Shah. They completed the 15-km ride around the city in the company of the royal couple.
Reporter Rosli from Ipoh Echo participated in the cycling event for the first time. He had this to say, “It’s was very sporting of the Sultan to cycle with us. I am thankful to Ipoh City Council for giving me this opportunity.”
Merdeka Eve Celebration
Over 2000 people gathered at Dataran Bandaraya Ipoh on the night of Sunday, August 30 at 10.30pm for the Merdeka eve celebration and the Merdeka Day countdown. HRH Sultan Nazrin Shah and HRH Raja Permaisuri Perak, Tuanku Zara Salim, were in attendance.
The crowd was enthralled by the cultural performance and songs from the boy band, “Sixth Sense”. After the countdown, the crowd chanted, “Merdeka, Merdeka, Merdeka” to signify the nation’s 58th Independence Day.
“I hope prices of essential goods will not go up,” said a 33-year-old mother when asked her hopes for Malaysia.
“I hope Malaysia will move forward and achieve Vision 2020,” said Nizam, 38, a navy personnel from Lumut. “I was based in Sabah before I got transferred to Lumut this year. This is my first time celebrating Merdeka eve in Ipoh.”
It was a lively celebration of Malaysia’s 58th birthday before an appreciative crowd of hundreds along Jalan Panglima Bukit Gantang Wahab on Monday, August 31.
Among the spectators on the VIP stand were the royal couple, HRH Sultan Nazrin Shah and HRH Raja Permaisuri Perak, Tuanku Zara Salim along with Menteri Besar Dato’ Seri DiRaja Dr Zambry Abd Kadir. The crowd caught a glimpse of the adorable prince, Raja Azlan Muzzaffar Shah, and the princess, Raja Nazira Safya.
The Ipoh City Council contingent stood out among the 114 marching contingents as they were crowned winners in the government department marching and best costume categories. Kinta District the Office won the District and Land Office marching category. In the school marching band category, Sekolah Tuanku Abdul Rahman took top honours. Telekom Malaysia Berhad won the private and voluntary body category while Universiti Teknologi Mara was the champion in the higher-learning institutions and schools category.
A unique Merdeka procession, two bullock carts flying the national flag led a group of 400 pupils from SJKT Kerajaan Sungai Pari on Friday, August 28 in Buntong, Perak.
Mei Kuan and Nantini