Merdeka literally means freedom and independence, but it can also symbolize much more. It goes without saying that Hari Merdeka can invoke national pride even in those who don’t consider themselves very patriotic.

So, to find out what Merdeka means to the average Malaysian, we asked 5 of our own CompareHero.my staff what Merdeka means to them. We interviewed employees from different departments, and got some very interesting and meaningful answers. Read on to find out what they said!

Faheem, Creative Designer

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What’s your earliest memory of Merdeka?
Before the pandemic, watching the Merdeka parade.

How did you and your family celebrate Merdeka in pre-Covid-19 times?
We celebrated it like a festive season—played some Merdeka songs, raised the Jalur Gemilang at home, or on our cars. We don’t have the parade or the fireworks anymore during the pandemic, but we can still show our support through social media, upload some pictures, share some positive words, and celebrate Merdeka virtually.

Do you have a favourite Merdeka song? If yes, what is it?
Negaraku by Faizal Tahir, it has a very strong message and lyrics.

How would you pass on the patriotic spirit of Merdeka to the next generation?
The easiest way to inject the patriotic spirit is to start with the flag. I start with my daughter and our little siblings first, teaching them the importance of treating our Jalur Gemilang with care and respect. The flag is not something that can be toyed with, it holds the country’s history, image and people’s unity. Raise and wave it proudly during the Merdeka month.

List 3 things you like most about Malaysia.
Malaysia is GOLD. Rich with race and culture, rich with food variety and so rich with so many holiday places!

What are your hopes and dreams for Malaysia?
I hope for 3 NOs in Malaysia. No racism, no bribe and no war.

Is there anything else you would like to share on how you feel about Merdeka?
I hope everyone will keep on having the Merdeka spirit despite whatever situation we are in that may involve politics or any other sensitive issues. Merdeka is all about celebrating our nation’s freedom from any outsider’s control, and our country’s history of independence. 


Eu Jin, General Manager

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What’s your earliest memory of Merdeka?
The mornings usually started with the sounds of jets or helicopters for the ceremony followed by the morning tunes on RTM1.

How did you and your family celebrate Merdeka in pre-Covid-19 times?
This feels like ages ago (pre-Covid-19), but in most cases it would end up being a day spent at home with the family, with good ol’ Malaysian food by the side—nasi lemak, roti canai, you name it.

Do you have a favourite Merdeka song? If yes, what is it?
Yes—Tanggal 31, hands down!

How would you pass on the patriotic spirit of Merdeka to the next generation?
By getting them to appreciate the uniqueness of Malaysia as a country, where we are a multi-cultural, multi-racial country, and no one should take that away from us.

List 3 things you like most about Malaysia.
Our food, the rakyat, & the fact that it is home.

What are your hopes and dreams for Malaysia? 
To bring back the Rakyat Spirit of unity within, and focus on getting ourselves back to the ‘Asian Tiger’ status which we used to enjoy in the early ’90s, and not forgetting, to get out of our current Covid-19 situation soon.

Is there anything else you would like to share on how you feel about Merdeka?
Merdeka acts as a good reminder for all of us to be proud as a Malaysian.

Eu Jin also shared with us a picture he took of this famous landmark in Malaysia—the KL Tower:

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Krystal, Customer Service Manager

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What’s your earliest memory of Merdeka?
When I think of Merdeka and its meaning, the image that comes to mind is still the iconic video of Tunku Abdul Rahman proclaiming “Merdeka” seven times at Stadium Merdeka.

How did you and your family celebrate Merdeka in pre-Covid-19 times?
My husband (who is a foreigner) had the opportunity to hand-make some Merdeka-themed handicrafts with the help of my young toddler. From making hibiscus flowers using colour papers to making a mini flag and painting it to have them placed at the living hall. While our family were busy completing these tasks, mummy was busy sharing stories about how unique Malaysia is on a whole. 

Do you have a favourite Merdeka song? If yes, what is it?
Tanggal 31.

How would you pass on the patriotic spirit of Merdeka to the next generation?
As we revisit our history, we also need to teach them about what happened in the past. It’s not just about encouraging them to decorate or make flag designs for this event. It helps if we also explain the flag, the colors, and why we are celebrating Merdeka in the first place. It would be a good history lesson for the younger generation.

List 3 things you like most about Malaysia.
1) Diversity of races, religions, and cultures
2) Standout dishes, especially Malaysia’s national dish, nasi lemak.
3) Beautiful beaches and secluded islands

What are your hopes and dreams for Malaysia?
1) The government must remember that to ensure the right communities are being targeted, we need to approach poverty differently.
2) Greater protection for the environment.

Is there anything else you would like to share on how you feel about Merdeka?
The excitement of hearing fighter jets thundering overhead for the Merdeka Day parade gives me goosebumps. 


Najiha, Graphic Designer

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What’s your earliest memory of Merdeka?
Quizzes, poetry, poster drawing and class decorating competitions in school and we dressed up in our traditional costumes during the Merdeka celebration!

How did you and your family celebrate Merdeka in pre-Covid-19 times?
We would go downtown to watch firework displays and we had dinner together!

Do you have a favourite Merdeka song? If yes, what is it?
Tanggal 31.

How would you pass on the patriotic spirit of Merdeka to the next generation?
By showing more appreciation to the diverseness of our people like the ethnicities, languages and religions, to explore more hidden gems in Malaysia, to have them familiarize themselves with old patriotic-theme songs, and to have them learn more about Malaysia’s history of independence.

List 3 things you like most about Malaysia.
The food, the places and its people.

What are your hopes and dreams for Malaysia?
My hope is that Malaysia continues to be a prosperous country for the new generations to come and for our people to fight Covid-19 together!

Is there anything else you would like to share on how you feel about Merdeka?
Missing the vibes of celebrating National Day during those pre-Covid years! It was a time when we all could watch firework displays at Dataran Merdeka and sing along to the national anthem and patriotic songs together without fear of contracting Covid. Nevertheless, when life returns to normal, let us all look back with no regrets knowing that we put our best effort to save the country!


Audrey, Call Center Manager

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What’s your earliest memory of Merdeka?
It was when I first heard Sudirman’s song titled “Tanggal 31 Ogos”. I was in my primary 2 and those days, we had only RTM1,  RTM2 and TV3 to choose from. Whichever channel we tuned to, we surely heard that song.

How did you and your family celebrate Merdeka in pre-Covid-19 times?
Back then, I used to bring my kids on a car ride after 11pm going around KLCC and hope to catch the 12am fireworks! I love how amazing fireworks can be. Sparkling in the sky with different colors and effects!

Do you have a favourite Merdeka song? If yes, what is it?
🎵 Tanggal tiga puluh satu…bulan lapan lima puluh tujuh, Merdeka Merdeka…tetaplah Merdeka 🎵 There you have it. Or rather this is the only song that I know! 

How would you pass on the patriotic spirit of Merdeka to the next generation?
Very often I will remind my kids to respect one another regardless of their race or religion, how this beautiful multiracial country still comes together to help one another during bad times and celebrate many occasions in the good times.

 List 3 things you like most about Malaysia.
First thing that comes to my mind is FOOD, FOOD and FOOD! Always the best wherever we are in different corners. Thinking of maggi goreng in my mind now! 

Secondly, definitely holidays. Different states with breathtaking sceneries especially under the sea and different yummies to nom with.

Last but not least are my awesome friends and peers from different cultures and backgrounds.

What are your hopes and dreams for Malaysia?
Looking forward to a united country with less discrimination as well as racial equalities. Also, having the best and inspiring leaders to lead this country and with the rakyat as their priority.

Is there anything else you would like to share on how you feel about Merdeka?
Merdeka! Merdeka! Merdeka! Selamat menyambut Hari Kebangsaan Malaysia ke-64! 😂

And there you have it! We hope you enjoyed this interview article, and we also wish for you to have a wonderful Merdeka celebration with your family in your own way. May we always love our country and never forget how far we’ve come in these 64 years!

To make your celebrations more fun, check out these Merdeka promotions you can claim! Some of them will expire on 31st August 2021, while others will run until 16th September 2021: