‘Pakatan’s Merdeka theme fiasco not sign of disunity’

Aidila Razak (MKini)
2:21PM Aug 9, 2012

The initial failure of four Pakatan Rakyat-controlled states to agree on a common Merdeka Day theme does not show disunity within the coalition, PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim maintains.

At a press conference today, Anwar said this was because all four states have now agreed to adopt the theme Sebangsa, Senegara Sejiwa – an alternative theme mooted by the Pakatan central leadership – as a co-theme in addition to the state-level themes.NONE

“Penang, Kelantan and Kedah had decided on their state level themes earlier, and when the matter was referred to the Pakatan council, the states showed readiness to adopt the Pakatan theme, and we congratulate them for this development,” Anwar said.

Clarifying further, Kelantan state exco member Husam Musa, who was also at the press conference in Petaling Jaya, said the alleged disunity was actually between the Pakatan state governments and the federal government.

“There is the national theme, and the state theme. The states do not accept the national theme and so adopt the Pakatan (chosen) theme as their national theme,” Husam said after the Pakatan council meeting.

Kelantan’s state theme is Menerajui Perubahan (Spearheading Change), Kedah has chosen Terus Berbakti (Continue to Serve) while Penang’s state National Day theme is Budaya Bersih, Merdekakan Rakyat (Clean Culture, Free the People).

Selangor is adopting Sebangsa, Senegara, Sejiwa as its state and national theme.

Pakatan rejected the national day theme Janji Ditepati, arguing that it is too political considering that a BN campaign launched months ago using this theme as well.

Alternate logo unveiled

Pakatan today also unveiled its alternate National Day logo, which will be adopted by all four states.

The official 55th National Day celebrations logo was scrapped after criticism from designers and the public at large, for its lack of aesthetics and non-adherence with design principles.NONE

The official song, Janji Ditepati, co-written by Information, Communications and Culture Minister Rais Yatim, was also panned, with lyricists calling it “vulgar propaganda”.

Pakatan is expected to unveil its alternate national day song, composed by a “renowned composer”, soon.

Meanwhile, PAS secretary-general Mustafa Ali said Pakatan will not only celebrate National Day, which falls on Aug 31, but also Malaysia Day which falls on Sept 16.

Pakatan’s National Day celebration will be held on Aug 30 in Selangor while it will celebrate Malaysia Day in Sabah on Sept 15 and Sarawak on Sept 16.

Meanwhile, Anwar said that Pakatan has in principle endorsed PKR’s mooted automotive policy, as evident in the 2012 shadow budget which included a reduction in excise duty and the introduction of a bidding system for approved permits.

“But in specifics, in terms of numbers and all that, we will have to discuss further,” he said.

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