JUNE 20. 2016
This was announced today by Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Dr Salleh Said Keruak after chairing a meeting of the National Day and Malaysia Day 2016 Celebrations Main Committee at Angkasapuri.
Salleh said the theme could enhance the people’s spirit of patriotism and love for the country based on their acceptance of and involvement in past National Day and Malaysia Day programmes.
“The theme, logo and song are being retained for this year’s celebrations. The use of the term ‘Hari Kebangsaan’ (National Day) without mention of the number of years is also being retained,” he said.
THE MEANING OF THE WORD 'MERDEKA'
Merdeka is a word in the Indonesian and Malay language meaning independent or free. It is derived from the Sanskrit maharddhika meaning "rich, prosperous and powerful". In the Malay archipelago, this term had acquired the meaning of a freed slave.
The term Mardijker is a Dutch corruption of the Portuguese version of the original Sanskrit words and was used to designate former Portuguese and Dutch slaves from India in the East Indies, known as Mardijkers, whence the Malay meaning of "free(dom)" is derived. Mardijker are the former Catholic slaves brought from India and the East Indies that were liberated by the Dutch if they abandoned Catholicism and embraced the Dutch Reformed Church.
The term was significant during the anticolonialist and pro-independence movements of the colonies of Indonesia, Malaya, and Singapore, in the history of Indonesia, history of Malaysia, and in the history of Singapore.
It became a battle-cry for those demanding independence from the colonial administrations of the Netherlands and United Kingdom.
In the southern Philippine island of Mindanao, the Moro people belonging to major ethno-linguistic groups of Meranaw, Maguindanaw and Iranun, use maradeka in the same meaning as freedom or liberation and freedom group there is called Maradeka.
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