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Cabinet retains 'Sehati, Sejiwa' National Day theme for 2016

The cabinet has agreed to retain last year's National Day theme 'Sehati, Sejiwa' (One Heart, One Soul) for 2016, said Communications and Multimedia Minister Salleh Said Keruak, adding that "there is a need for the good old feeling of togetherness among Malaysians".

He said that as Malaysia approached its 59th Merdeka celebration, "such togetherness is crucial if we want to see our nation, and its people progress over the next decade or so".

"I believe that no matter what the colour of your skin or the language that you speak, there are universal values we all share and which unites us," he said in a post on his blog today.

Salleh said few things could unite people, like sports, arts and entertainment.

"Besides the favourites, world champions Nicol David and Lee Chong Wei, we have a lot of other amazing athletes who have flown our 'Jalur Gemilang' on the world stage and brought honour to our country," he said.

Salleh touched on visually-impaired 16-year-old Felicia Mikat who won three gold medals at the eighth Asean Para Games last year, and Paralympic athletes Mohd Ridzuan Mohd Puzi and Abdul Latif Romly, who both won gold at the recent IPC Athletics World Championships in Doha.

"Any sportsperson will tell you that excelling in the field of sports is a formidable task but it is even tougher when you are born with a disability," he said.

On arts and entertainment, Salleh said, actress Michelle Yeoh had elevated Malaysia’s name with her acting chops, singer-songwriter Yuna has joined entertainment icons such as Beyonce and Rihanna when her latest album was charted as one of the top R&B albums released this year.

"Finally, we have filmmaker Nadira Ilana who is the first Malaysian selected for a residency with Big Stories, an Australian documentary project exploring rural towns across Asia Pacific," he said.

He said it was heatwarming to know that "we have more Malaysians making waves on the global stage and these success stories are the elements that can inspire a country and leave us beaming with pride of being Malaysian".

"We must protect our independence and conserve our spirit of togetherness. Let us maintain a united spirit of togetherness and continue to strive for excellence and unity in all that we do," he added.

- Bernama

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