KUALA LUMPUR, June 6 (Bernama) -- '#sehatisejiwa' was today announced as the theme for this year's Independence or Merdeka Day celebration.
Communications and Multimedia Minister Datuk Seri Ahmad Shabery Cheek said the theme was chosen because it reflected the spirit of solidarity, understanding, togetherness and humanity of all people in the country.
"For example, the earthquake in Sabah and natural disasters like floods which hit the country recently were felt and affected all Malaysians.
"That is why the theme was chosen to symbolise the spirit of solidarity shared by all citizens no matter where they are," he said at the pre-launch of this year's Merdeka celebration at Dataran Merdeka, here, today.
He added that starting this year, the Merdeka Day and Malaysia Day celebrations would no longer be called by their anniversary, but by year.
"It is seen as the principle of equality between the peninsula, Sabah and Sarawak because Malaysia was formed on Sept 16, 1963 and the peninsula achieved independence (from British colonial rule) on Aug 31, 1957," he said.
At the ceremony, Ahmad Shabery also introduced Merdeka Day merchandise to be sold to the public as souvenirs.
The minister also flagged off the #sehatisejiwa Exploration convoy involving two Information Department vehicles, 10 Proton Club vehicles, 20 big bikes and a bonded truck, which will travel across the country to promote this year's Merdeka Day celebration.