COMMENT:THE wholesale market in Selayang would not be operating on Sept 16 (tomorrow) as it is a public holiday, or so it is rumoured!
Neither would the other wholesale market in Seri Kembangan or the Chinese wet market off Old Klang Road, or even the one in Lucky Gardens, Bangsar.
Ironically, there have been numerous public holidays this year, so markets closing this Wednesday public holiday do come as a surprise.
With such rumours making their rounds, hypermarkets and supermarkets citywide have recorded high sales over the past four days.
Whether such rumours come true on Sept 16, one cannot deny the fact that somebody scored a windfall with such news swirling over the past four days.
These rumours definitely boosted domestic spending and it cannot be ruled out that some mischievous money-eyed individuals decided to jump onto the bandwagon.
Such a perceived fear scenario could be a page from the Tom Clancy novel The Sum Of All Fears, or Michael Crichton’s State of Fear, as the man on the street not only has to contend with the unhealthy haze which blankets the Klang Valley, including Padang Merbok, but also these rumours.
So it comes as no surprise when earlier this week Inspector-General of Police Tan Sri Khalid Abu Bakar, in a strongly-worded statement, said police would be out in full force at Padang Merbok and several roads leading into the city centre would be closed.
The nation’s top cop did not mince his words when he made clear his stand (and that of the force) about such street marches.
They have never taken kindly to such marches, irrespective which side of the political divide those marching are from.
“The gathering is going ahead because the owner of the property granted permission to gather against our better advice,” Khalid had said.
The yellows failed to adhere to police advice to call off their pre-Merdeka rally, so now the “reds” have decided on quid pro quo this Malaysia Day.
It was only in recent years that Malaysia Day was made a national holiday event to foster unity, togetherness and harmony in conjunction of the 1963 formation.
Who would have thought, five years later, it would turn out such where fear seems to be the order of the day.
Retired Special Branch Superintendent Singh returned from West London’s Southall recently for a short holiday and this lanky former High Street (later Jalan Bandar, now Jalan Tun H. S. Lee) copper knows much about fear.
The former Superintendent served at the height of that Tuesday of infamy in 1969, when bloodshed, riots and fear were the order of the day.
And when the orders came in, the uniformed were quick to respond, and in a quick retort Singh said: “Some of these buggers weren’t even born then, and today they are rabble rousers.”
And, expressing his disgust, Singh simply said one was playing with fire when they played the race card, and true blue Malaysians should not fall for this ploy.
Many echo Singh’s sentiments as Malaysians did not spend the past five decades viewing each other with distrust and fear.
For many, this might come as a surprise… It would seem “Malaysia Forever” was the unofficial national anthem for Sept 16, and was played over national broadcasts until Singapore exited in 1965.
Since then, the tune has not come over the airwaves in Malaysia or on that island republic.
Penned by Canadian folk song writer Bobby Gimby, the lyrics of the tune include “Land of the free, marching as one. Ready to share in every way…”
And so goes that tune “Malaysia Forever” … since everybody wants to march come Sept 16!