COMMENT | The true significance of Malaysia Day

Nathaniel Tan

16 Sep 2020, 7:02 am

Updated a month ago



COMMENT | Happy Malaysia Day! I’ll mark the occasion by discussing two major themes I feel are most significant about September 16, Sabah and Sarawak in the Federation, and comparing the narratives of Merdeka and Malaysia Day.

I think it was on Twitter that I read someone saying Malaysia Day is when tons of Malayans spout inaccurate things about Sabah and Sarawak.

I sure hope I don’t make that mistake. My humble apologies beforehand if I do.

I think it’s not uncommon for people to talk about how disconnected East Malaysians feel about Malaysia. Maybe it’s a little less common for people to openly talk about the degree to which they feel this disconnect.

It’s hard to find a good English equivalent to the Malay term ‘dianaktirikan’, when talking about the perceived dynamic between West and East Malaysia - a sense that East Malaysia has been left behind, sidelined, and marginalised in the grand Malaysian scheme of things.

How deep does this feeling go...

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