To know Malaysia is to love Malaysia: Having witnessed the country’s growth has taught Ameer to not take its economic stability for granted.
PETALING JAYA: Growing up in Kota Baru, he and his six siblings and their parents would huddle together for meals, pinching morsels from one small fish to eat with rice. “I treasure that memory because it taught me a lifelong lesson on humility. I’ll never forget where I came from,” said Datuk Ameer Ali Mydin, 62. “My mother wouldn’t take any fish, of course ... a mother always sacrifices ... oh, we were so poor during those years,” recalled the managing director of Mydin Mohamed Holdings Berhad (Mydin). “Our country was poor when I was poor,” he said, adding that his father told him stories of people having only ubi kayu (tapioca) to eat during the Japanese Occupation. Over the years, as the nation prospered, so did the fortunes of Ameer’s family as their one little shop selling toys and general goods set up in 1957 – the same year the country achieved independence – mushroomed and grew to become the homegrown empire of 322 outlets, including Mydin supermarkets, hypermarkets and the upmarket SAM’s Groceria outlets nationwide. Mydin celebrates its 60th anniversary today with a big bash at its USJ Subang outlet. He added that having witnessed the country’s growth taught him to not take Malaysia’s economic stability for granted. He has a strong kinship and love for the country.It is this love for the country that prompted him to support Star Media Group’s Raise The Flag initiative, which seeks to strengthen national pride among Malaysians.
“As a true Malaysian and helming a Malaysian company, if I do not support such a noble act as raising the flag, who would do it then?” he asked, adding that the Jalur Gemilang would fly proudly near the gate of his house every National Day. Ameer, who regularly travels abroad for work, said his trips always reminded him of how special Malaysia was. “I can say that there is no country like Malaysia. There is moderation here, which is difficult to find in other countries, and tolerance for all religions and races,” he said. He added that every time he came back from a trip, he would head for his usual fix of teh tarik and roti canai at a mamak shop in Bangsar. “You know, Malaysians are more Malaysian when they are overseas!” he added with a laugh. The Raise The Flag initiative will run until Malaysia Day on Sept 16. Aset Kayamas is the main sponsor while Malaysian Resources Corporation Bhd is the co-sponsor. Under the Raise the Flag campaign, special four-page spreads will enable Malaysians to assemble their own mini flags. There will also be T-shirt templates included in the newspaper’s centrespread. Decorate the T-shirts with a Malaysian motif and be photographed “wearing” it while holding the flags. Best poses should be hashtagged #RaiseTheFlagMY on social media. On Facebook, you can also share it as: raisetheflagmy. Refer to the exciting list of prizes that include staycations and dining vouchers in the centrespread. To bulk order any of the remaining Raise The Flag issues slated for Aug 21 and Sept 14, contact The Star’s Customer Care unit at 1-300-887827 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm).
Source : The Star Online