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Designed by an Architect, and 8 Things You Probably Never Knew About Our Jalur Gemilang



The Jalur Gemilang Was Designed by an Architect, and X Things You Never Knew About Our M'sian Flag - WORLD OF BUZZ 8

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We all know the basics of our Jalur Gemilang; like how it has 14 alternating red and white stripes, a blue canton at the top left corner as well as a crescent and 14-point star on top of it. That’s basic general knowledge! However, do you know the history behind our beloved Malaysian flag? How it was birthed, who designed it, and so forth?

Well, here are some fun facts about the Jalur Gemilang you probably didn’t know, but totally should:

1. The design of the Malaysian flag was birthed from a flag design competition

You couldn’t be more wrong if you thought we had our own renown designer to design our beloved Jalur Gemilang. Nope, the design was in fact birthed from a nationwide competition organised by the Federation Legislation Council in 1949.


2. 373 flag designs were submitted by everyday Malaysians

All submissions were sent to the Clerk of the Council, Council Chamber, Kuala Lumpur via snail mail and Malaysians who took part in this design competition had these few rules to adhere to:

  1. The flag must be simple
  2. Should keep to the colours of yellow, red, white and blue
  3. The general design should be symbolic of the Federation and the unity of the nine states and two settlements
  4. The design may also include a kris, cross krises, a tiger or crescent


3. Only THREE out of 373 designs were shortlisted 

The above three flags were the top three shortlisted designs out of 373 submissions.


4. The winning flag was designed by a government architect

Yes, architect.

He wasn’t a designer of any kind, he was an architect and his name was Mohamed Bin Hamzah. He submitted four designs, only one of which made it into the top three selections. The flag with the blue and white stripes was Hamzah’s winning design. Wah, so proud!


5. The official flag consisted of 11 red and white stripes and an 11-point star, not 14

After some minor changes, our flag was birthed! 11 stripes (six red, five white) and 11-point star represented the unity between 11 federated states which were Perak, Selangor, Melaka, Johor, Pahang, Negeri Sembilan, Perlis, Kedah, Kelantan, Terengganu and Pulau Pinang. On 19 April 1950, the new Malaysian flag was officially raised.

However, after the formation of Malaysia in 1963, the flag was amended again to 14 stripes and 14-point star instead of 11, including Sabah and Sarawak as a state member.


6. The national flag was raised for the first time on 26 May 1950

On behalf of statesmen, the national flag was raised by Sir Henry Gurney (British High Commissioner in Malaya) at exactly 9.38AM. This incredible moment took place within the confines of the Sultan Selangor’s palace thaw was attended by the D.Y.M.M Raja-Raja Melayu and the royal officers of King George VI.


7. The name of the Malaysian flag was birthed from yet another competition 

The proposal to come up with an official name for the flag came from Y.Bhg. Dato’ Hashim bin Mat Deris. He believed the Malaysian flag should be given a proper name just like how the flags of U.S.A (Star Spangled Banner), United Kingdom (Union Jack), and France (Tri-Colour) are recognised worldwide.

Then-Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad agreed, and on 11 July 1995, a competition to find the best name for the flag was held, but was limited to a selected few.


8. There was an important criteria to follow in naming the flag

Some of the criteria that must be considered include:

  • The name must be in the Malaysian language
  • Must be ’emotive’ in nature; should trigger patriotism in showing loyalty to the king and country
  • Adopted from the old transcripts (e.g; Malay Annals)
  • Chosen from classical prose to represent loyalty and warrior
  • Easy to enunciate
  • Simple words from the Malaysian language
  • Interesting sound
  • Easy to explain


9. The Malaysian flag was finally given its name after 40 years

Named the ‘Jalur Gemilang’ (Glorious Stripes), it stands for the embodiment of Malaysians.

In fact, “Gemilang” carries the meaning of bright, brilliant and excellence. With that, the Jalur Gemilang is meant to represent the people and the nation’s excellence through loyalty, persistence and unity in upholding the country’s image.

The official naming ceremony was held on 31 August 1997 by then-Prime Minister Y.A.B Dato Seri Dr. Mahathir Mohamad at Merdeka Square.

Wow! Who knew our official Malaysian flag was only given a name after 40 years? Learn something new everyday!

If you thought this was interesting, make sure you share it with your friends! After all, the history and origins of our country, as well as its national flag is something all Malaysians should know!


Also read: Video Shows Panelist at A Loss For Words When Dr M Gatecrashes Forum About Him

The Jalur Gemilang Was Designed by an Architect, and X Things You Never Knew About Our M'sian Flag - WORLD OF BUZZ 9

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