It’s safe to say that despite Merdeka celebrations, Malaysians have not had an easy couple of years, what with the general state of local politics that was further exacerbated by the effects of a global pandemic that led to a stymied economy and sharp inflation. In just two years time, the nation has witnessed three changes of government, and two different Prime Ministers take office.
Understandably, public enthusiasm for the government isn’t exactly at an all time high, with many locals left inured by the state of things as they are now. And while many Malaysians made a point of turning up to enjoy a moment’s respite from the troubles that ail us with the pomp and grandeur of the Merdeka parade, the same enthusiasm was notably absent during a subsequent event that was held later in the evening that very same day.
Emcees met with murmurs & silence after trying to urge support for PM Ismail Sabri
In a short clip that was shared by netizen @durianator over the popular video sharing platform TikTok, a sea of spectators could be seen attending what is assumed to be a Merdeka event held in a large field.
Two emcees, a man and a woman, could be seen standing on a stage in the distance. In an effort to pump up the atmosphere and bolster the energy from among those attending the event, they both then took turns to lead the crowd in repeating a series of phrases, starting with ‘Malaysia, Tanah Airku‘ (Malaysia, my homeland) and subsequently followed by ‘Negaraku, Malaysiaku‘ (My country, my Malaysia) and ‘Kami bangga jadi bangsa Malaysia!’ (We are proud to be Malaysians).
All seemed rather well-intentioned, until the male emcee could be heard enthusiastically shouting out ‘Malaysia sayang PM!’ (Malaysia loves the Prime Minister!), in hopes of accruing support for current Prime Minister Ismail Sabri. This was only responded with mutters from among the crowd, with one man even heard going ‘Errrr‘ in the background.
Seemingly unfazed by the lackluster response, the female emcee decided to give it another go by shouting ‘Kami semua sayang PM!’ (We all love the Prime Minister!), but to no avail. The audience remained staunchly disinterested.
And yet, the female emcee commended the audience nonetheless, ending things by saying that ‘This is the energy we want!’.
Netizens have responded in kind, saying Merdeka events shouldn’t be politicised
The clip has since gone viral across social media, with netizens leaving amused reactions to the entire debacle.
Others have also been critical of how the event emcees have politicised a Merdeka event by trying to coax their audience into showing support for a politician.
“We love the country, not the government,”
“We love the country, not its ministers. Huhu.”
“For all my life since I was a child celebrating Merdeka, never once have I shouted ‘I love PM!’. We always shouted ‘We love Malaysia’ only!”
“This is Independence Day, not Prime Minister Day.”
“Don’t involve politics in Merdeka. In actuality, Merdeka should be the most important day in the heart of every Malaysian.”
Tap here to give us a ‘Like’ on Facebook and stay up-to-date on the latest news!
Also read: DBKL calls out spectators for crushing landscaped greenery while trying to watch the Merdeka parade yesterday