Malaysians dress up to show patriotism

Olivia Miwil, SUZIANAH JIFFAR

KOTA KINABALU: Dressed in traditional Murut attire, Aubryeand Kingsten Jusit was the youngest in a contingent of 35 who performed a warrior dance at the state-level Merdeka day celebrations, here, today.

The 8-year-old boy, who wore an outfit called sampoi and headdress called sinulatan or lalandau, had woken up at 4am to prepare for the event.

Ben, as he is known, said he was excited to show his patriotism by representing the Murut subethnic group in Nabawan in celebration.

“I have been taking part in the Merdeka day parade since I was 4,” said the SK Pekan Nabawan pupil.

“It was fun to walk and dance with traditional clothes. Many people clapped for us.”

Ben’s father Andy Jusit, 44, said he hoped that Ben and his three older siblings would learn to appreciate the value of peace and independence through participation in the event.

Among the spectators were a family of five from Kuala Lumpur who wore Jalur Gemilang T-shirts to show their support for a new Malaysia.

Datuk Paul Kong, 47, said they had flown in from Kuala Lumpur on Monday to experience the national day celebration in Sabah.

“This year is a special year... a new Malaysia, we came to see the celebration here and dressed in the eye-catching Jalur Gemilang T-shirts from our children’s school,” he said, adding that his wife, Angeline Mak, was from here.

His son Bryan, 14, said his school in Kuala Lumpur sold the Jalur Gemilang T-shirts at RM25 each.

“We can wear the T-shirts every day for about two months. It is to show our patriotism,” he said. © New Straits Times Press (M) Bhd