KUALA LUMPUR, Aug. 30 (Xinhua) -- Malaysian Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin on Sunday called for his compatriots to care for each other in the face of challenges including those caused by the COVID-19 outbreak, ahead of the country's national day to celebrate the 63rd anniversary of independence.
In a televised address, Muhyiddin urged Malaysians to care for the country, work towards maintaining the peace and harmony Malaysia presently enjoys and push the country forward to be more successful in various fields.
Recalling the success Malaysia has achieved since independence, Muhyiddin stressed that the country still faces "big challenge."
"Our country must continue to be developed to become one that is ahead so that all its people can enjoy its success," he said.
Muhyiddin added that the country was recovering from disruptions caused by the COVID-19 outbreak. While more than 15 million people have returned to their jobs, he cautioned that a full recovery would take time.
"However I am confident that with the current trend our national economy will recover quickly," he said.
For the first time in history, the national day celebration will be held in accordance with the new norms by complying with the standard operating procedure (SOP) of the ongoing movement control order implemented to combat the outbreak, according to state news agency Bernama.
There will be no assemblies and parades on Monday by uniformed bodies, government agencies and the private sector this year, being replaced by events with a limited number of attendees.
On Aug. 31, 1957, the then Federation of Malaya achieved independence. In 1963, it was reconstituted as Malaysia after joining Singapore, North Borneo (renamed as Sabah) and Sarawak. Singapore withdrew from Malaysia and declared independence two years later.