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Thursday, August 12, 2010

Malaysia Flag

The flag of Malaysia, also known as the Jalur Gemilang (Malay for "Stripes of Glory"), comprises a field of 14 alternating red and white stripes along the fly and a blue canton bearing a crescent and a 14-point star known as the Bintang Persekutuan (Federal Star). The 14 stripes, of equal width, represent the equal status in the federation of the 13 member states and the federal government, while the 14 points of the star represent the unity between these entities[1]. The crescent represents Islam, the country's official religion; the blue canton symbolizes the unity of the Malaysian people; the yellow of the star and crescent is the royal colour of the Malay rulers.[2]

In blazon, the Malaysian flag is described as: "A banner Gules, seven bars Argent; the canton Azure charged with decrescent and mullet of fourteen points Or." This means "a red flag with six horizontal white stripes; the upper-left (hoist) quarter is blue with a yellow waning crescent (i.e. horns pointing to sinister) and a yellow 14-pointed star."

The flag of Malaysia, which was first raised on September 16, 1963, originated from the flag of the Federation of Malaya.After the British started to collectively administer the eleven states of Malaya as a single entity, the idea of having a national flag was mooted. Prior to that, each state in Malaya had its own flag, many of which are unchanged in design to this day.

When the Federation of Malaya replaced the short lived Malayan Union, the federation government through the Federal Legislative Council called for a design contest for a new flag. Three flags were forwarded to the public. The first flag had 11 white stars with two Malay kris (daggers) in the middle against a blue backdrop. The second flag "concentric circle of 11 stars around crossed keris on a blue field." The third "had 11 alternate red and white stripes and a yellow crescent and a five-pointed star on a blue background in the top left hand corner." The third design - by Mohamad Hamzah of the Public Works Department - was chosen as the winner through a public poll held by The Malay Mail.[3] Since Malaya was fighting the communists during the Malayan Emergency, the five-pointed star had the uncanny resemblance with the communists' symbols. Therefore, the star was modified to accommodate six more points.
The Malayan flag was approved by King George VI on 19 May 1950 and was first raised in front of Istana Selangor on 26 May 1950. On 31 August 1957, it was raised upon independence at Merdeka Square in place of the British Union Flag.

The designer
The Malayan flag was designed by Mohamed Hamzah, a 29-year-old architect working for the Public Works Department (JKR) in Johor Bahru, Johor. He entered the Malayan flag design competition in 1947 with two designs which he completed within two weeks. The first design was a green flag with blue kris in the middle, surrounded by 15 white stars. The second design, which was among the three finalists, was similar to the current flag but with a five-pointed star. It borrows major design elements from the American flag, such as the red and white stripes, and the idea of the stars representing districts. The competition attracted 373 entries and voting was made by the general public via post. Malayan senior statesman Dato' Onn Jaafar met with Mohamed Hamzah after he won the competition and suggested that the star be changed to an 11-pointed one to represent all the Malayan states.

Mohamed Hamzah died just short of his 75th birthday on 13 February 1993 in Jalan Stulang Baru, Kampung Melayu Majidee, Johor.[4]

Following the formation of Malaysia on September 16, 1963, the design of the Malayan flag was modified to reflect and honour the new states in the federation.

Three additional stripes were added to the existing flag and the star was given 14 points to reflect the federation of the original 11 states in Malaya plus Sabah, Sarawak, and Singapore; this design remained the same even after Singapore's expulsion from the federation two years later. When Kuala Lumpur was designated a Federal Territory on February 1, 1974, the additional stripe and the point in the star were appropriated to represent this new addition to the federation. Eventually, with the addition of two other federal territories — Labuan in 1984 and Putrajaya in 2001 — the fourteenth stripe and point in the star came to be associated with the federal government in general.
In 1997, when Malaysians were invited to name the flag, then Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir bin Mohammad picked the name Jalur Gemilang to project the country's onward drive towards continuous growth and success.

Flag Anthem

The Jalur Gemilang flag anthem was introduced in 2000. The lyrics were written by Pak Ngah.

Original lyrics
Merah membara semangat waja
Putihmu bersih budi pekerti
Kuning berdaulat payung negara
Biru perpaduan kami semua

Puncak dunia telah kau tawan
Lautan luas telah kau redah
Membawa semangat jiwa Merdeka
Semarak jaya kami warganya

Empat belas melintang jalurnya
Semua negeri dalam Malaysia
Satu suara satu semangat
Itu sumpah warga berdaulat

Jalur Gemilang di bawah naunganmu
Jalur Gemilang kami semua bersatu
Perpaduan kedaulatan
Amalan murni rakyat Malaysia

Jalur Gemilang megah kami terasa
Jalur Gemilang kibarkanlah wawasan
Merah, putih, biru, kuning
Jalur semangat kami semua (2x)

Berkibarlah, berkibarlah, berkibarlah!

Jalur Gemilang!

English translation
Your Red represents steely will
Your White represents clean and kind character
Yellow of the Sovereign, the country's protector
Blue for all of us in unity

You have reached the heights of the world
You have traveled the wide waters
Bearing the spirit of Merdeka ('independence')
We are members of its successful will

Fourteen stripes across
For each of the states of Malaysia
One voice, one spirit
So its sovereign citizens solemnly swear

Jalur Gemilang, beneath your care
Jalur Gemilang, we unite
Sovereign unity
Malaysian citizens' good charity

Jalur Gemilang, how proud we feel
Jalur Gemilang, proclaim our vision
Red, white, blue, yellow
Are the stripes of our resolve (2x)

Flutter-on, flutter-on, flutter-on

Jalur Gemilang!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Bunga raya~

Hibiscus _0245_p by walism.
Hibiscus (pronounced /hɨˈbɪskəs/[2] or /haɪˈbɪskəs/[3]) is a genus of flowering plants in the mallow family, Malvaceae. It is quite large, containing about 200–220 species that are native to warm, temperate, subtropical and tropical regions throughout the world.

Hibiscus rosa-sinensis adalah bunga kebangsaan Malaysia, dikenali sebagai Bunga Raya. Selepas mencapai kemerdekaan, Kementerian Pertanian telah diarah mencadangkan bunga yang sesuai untuk dipilih sebagai bunga kebangsaan. Pada akhir pada tahun 1958 Kementerian Pertanian telah mencadangkan tujuh jenis bunga untuk dipilih sebagai Bunga Kebangsaan Persekutuan Tanah Melayu. Bunga yang dicadangkan adalah Bunga Kenanga, Bunga Raya, Bunga Melur, Bunga Teratai, Bunga Mawar, Bunga Cempaka dan Bunga Tanjung. Selepas perbincangan, pada 28 Julai 1960, Bunga Raya telah diisytiharkan sebagai Bunga Kebangsaan Persekutuan Tanah Melayu. Apabila Tanah Melayu bergabung dengan Singapura, Sabah dan Sarawak untuk menubuh Malaysia, Bunga Raya terus diguna sebagai bunga kebangsaan..

Hibiscus rosa-sinensis is the Malaysia's national flower. called as bunga Raya. After the independence, the Ministry of Agriculture was instructed to recommend the suitable flower to be the national flower. The flowers that was suggested was bunga kenanga, bunga raya, bunga melur Bunga Teratai, Bunga Mawar, Bunga Cempaka dan Bunga Tanjung. After discussion on the 28 july 1960, bunga raya (the hibiscus) was selected. Then when Peninsular Malaya, Sabah Sarawak joined to form Malaysia, Bunga Raya remained as the national flower.

The species hibiscus rosa-sinensis was chosen out of seven other flowers to be the national flower of Malaysia. The reason is that the folks privileged to make this choice thought its five petals can be used to symbolize Rukunegara or the five principles of nationhood...