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Expressing their love for nation with clothes

KUALA LUMPUR: A few first-time visitors to the National Day parade went out of their way to express their love for the country.
Lenla, 40, a Bajau from Semporna, Sabah, used national flags she bought from a supermarket to sew four sets of children’s attire and hats.
They were worn by her older sister’s son and her neighbour’s three children.
The four children, aged between five and 10, frequently caught the eye of other visitors, many of whom asked to take their photograph.
“I didn’t expect it (the costumes) to be so popular. I got the idea from the Internet,” she said when met at Leboh Pasar Besar here.
Asked why she did not make and wear one herself, Lenla said she was too shy.
Norizam Arshad, 44, a primary school teacher from Kajang, showed up with her family of seven all adorned in Merdeka Day T-shirts she designed herself.
“We sent the design to the printer two days ago and received them at 1am today,” said Norizam.
The T-shirt front featured the word “Merdeka” in silver on top of the national flag while the back was printed with “Sehati Sejiwa” and the number 60 in gold.
It was a particularly memorable Merdeka for her as it was also the first time she took the MRT. Her family rode the MRT feeder bus at 6.30am from their home to the Kajang station, where they took the MRT to Pasar Seni and walked to Dataran Merdeka to watch the parade.
“I felt so proud as a Malaysian, I almost wanted to cry. I also felt very inspired by the country’s stellar performance at the SEA Games,” said Norizam.
Those who did not have the time to prepare special attire for the parade – like Shamsul Bahri Md Tokit, 50, of Puchong – bought stickers of the Malaysian flag for his family to decorate their faces.
“We came to support one of my daughters, who is taking part in the parade,” Shamsul said at Jalan Mahkamah Persekutuan.
He said his daughter Siti Nur Sallamah, 16, had left the house at 5am every day for the past two months to train for the parade.
Her school, SMK Puchong Utama 1, was one of the schools selected to be part of the parade.
Bank employees Yap Siau Wei, 25, and Christy Loo, 26, from Cheras, were never interested in the National Day parade before but were glad that they decided to come this year.
“Unlike watching it on TV, we can bask in the atmosphere. We are proud to gather with different races here as Malaysians today,”
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