For the first time in National Day history, Malaysia’s head of state, the Yang di-Pertuan Agong Al-Sultan Abdullah Ri’ayatuddin Al-Mustafa Billah Shah along with Cabinet Ministers recorded a special video — a rendition of Francisca Peter’s song titled ‘Setia’ — in conjunction with the 62nd Merdeka (National) Day celebrations.
Written by former Information Minister and the late Tan Sri Dato Mohamed bin Rahmat (who also wrote “Sejahtera Malaysia”), ‘Setia’ literally means ‘loyal’ or ‘loyalty’. And was released alongside the Setia campaign launched during Mahathir’s first tenure as Prime Minister of Malaysia in the 80s and 90s.
Published on Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s official Facebook page Friday night, the song lasted for three-minute 32-second and ended with leaders wishing “Selamat Menyambut Hari Kebangsaan Malaysia” — literally translated as “Happy National Day Malaysia”.
The video switches between montages of the leaders’ activities with visuals of a studio recording — sees Sultan Abdullah together with Dr Mahathir and the rest of the cabinet members including Deputy Prime Minister Dr Wan Azizah Wan Ismail singing in unison.
The song, originally sang by Francisca Peter (below), was initially popularized on Malaysia’s national television — RTM 1 and RTM 2. And later came to represent the increasing pride of Malaysia’s growth.
In another new arrangement/version released under the national theme ‘Sayangi Malaysiaku: Malaysia Bersih’ in conjunction with National Day (Aug 31) and Malaysia Day (Sept 16), ‘Setia’ (below) is performed by Malaysian artists including Francisca Peter, Ara Johari, Zainal Abidin, Ernie Zakri, Hael Husaini, Man Bai, Nicole and Syamel.
“Setia” translation (Bahasa Malaysia – English)
“For the beloved motherland” // “Expressing my whole-hearted loyalty” // “To a highly-respected King” // “of inseparable loyalty” // “From the leaders and people of the nation” // “service is given with full respect” // “working together, striving together” // “Loyal in service to all” // “willingness to sacrifice all” // “the people’s interest protected” // “we vow to be fully loyal” // “for our believes, our people and our country” //