It is not unusual to receive greetings and well wishes during the Chinese New Year festive period.
Malaysians are celebrating the festivity under a new normal and in accordance with the existing COVID-19 Standard Operating Procedures.
Those celebrating are literally going through a very new Chinese New Year. One that is different from years before. Most are just making the best of the situation in the interest of safety and health.
What really tugged on my heart strings this year were the personal well wishes from not only my non-Chinese friends but even strangers, who conveyed their greetings of “Gong Xi Fa Cai”.
Friends and work colleagues relayed the message via voice note or call, while the people I come across when out buying food and groceries did so in person.
It did not matter if the pronunciation or enunciation was off key. They conveyed a loud and clear message of unity and respect.
It was more than just a greeting to me. It was a message that spoke volumes of how the festive joy brought Malaysians closer together.
We are all children of Malaysia and share a common objective of harmony, peace and unity. We all have a shared responsibility of promoting those values which are the pillars of progressiveness in nation-building.
It should not only be confined to when there is a major festivity. It should be a Malaysian way of life.
Hence, I would like to remind everyone that we have a civic duty to not only each other, but also to the nation.
Let’s stand as one and convey the message of harmony, peace, moderation and unity for our frontliners, who are still battling hard against the COVID-19 pandemic, and for our beloved country, Malaysia.
Yeap Ming Liong