Crowds pack Banda Hilir to celebrate Malaysia Day 2022

MALACCA: Walking along the Banda Hilir, especially at the Dataran Pahlawan grounds here this afternoon, is like going back in time to the historic day of the declaration of the country’s independence by Tunku Abdul Rahman Putra Al-Haj, on Feb 20, 1956.

Sixty-six years ago, people of different races, backgrounds and religions gathered here to celebrate the Bapa Kemerdekaan (Father of Independence) Tunku Abdul Rahman, with his entourage, returning from London and announcing the date of the country’s independence, and today the Malaysian families are back together at the exact same spot to celebrate Malaysia Day 2022.

Held at the Independence Declaration Memorial Square, located next to the Dataran Pahlawan, which marks the first Malaysia Day celebration held in the Peninsula, the venue was already packed with visitors as early as 4 pm.

Local and foreign visitors alike, along with their family members and friends, seem excited and looking forward to the celebration this evening.

As the Malaysia Day 2022 celebration features the fashion theme of the 50s and 60s era, and multi-ethnic traditional costumes, it is nice to see some visitors attend the event dressed accordingly in baju Melayu and Nyonya kebaya, among others, complete with traditional fashion accessories.

As of 6 pm, the weather here has been good and, according to the Malaysian Meteorological Department’s forecast, the good weather is expected to continue until evening to ensure the celebration’s smooth running.

There are elevated seating facilities, as well as more than five giant screens available near the main stage and around the locations, to facilitate 20,000 visitors who are expected to attend tonight’s celebration.

A total of 200 units of ‘evamatic’ mats are also being distributed by Perbadanan Melaka Holding Sdn Bhd to people who attend the event this evening, especially those with families, so that they can watch the programme in comfort.

Although the main roads leading to the Independence Declaration Memorial Square started to get congested this afternoon, the situation is still under control with security personnel on duty, in addition to medical tent facilities in case of emergency.

Undoubtedly, the presence of visitors brings smiles to rickshaw pullers and small traders around the locations of the celebration as they can generate extra income.

Tonight’s event will begin with the arrival of the guest of honour on a rickshaw, followed by a visual presentation about the history of Malaysia’s formation, featuring veteran actor Shaharudin Tamby as the narrator.

Among the interesting programmes this evening are the symbolic ceremony of signing the proclamation book as well as theatrical and musical performances. There are also popular singers, including Datuk Nash and Ernie Zakri, performing alongside cultural artists, while another highlight of tonight’s celebration is a colourful fireworks display.-Bernama