IPOH, Aug 23 — Retired policeman Jamaludin Ahmad has been decorating his Kampung Tersusun Tasek home for Merdeka over the past three years.

While the first two years was in conjunction with a competition organised by the area’s rukun tetangga and Masjid As-Syakirin, in which Jamaludin won first prize, the father of four has decided to continue with the ‘tradition’ this year to add festive cheer to the Merdeka mood.

The 63-year-old, who retired as a sub-inspector from the state police contingent, said this year’s competition was postponed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“But I decided to continue decorating my home just for the fun of it and also to add on to the Merdeka mood,” he said.

Speaking to Malay Mail when met at his home in Bercham, Jamaludin said preparation to decorate his home, which he moved in three years ago, took him two months.

Jamaludin and wife Masitah Ismail placing one of the flags in the decor. — Picture by Farhan Najib
Jamaludin and wife Masitah Ismail placing one of the flags in the decor. — Picture by Farhan Najib

“Assembling it only took me 10 days,” he said, adding he used a total of 252 Jalur Gemilang in various sizes to decorate his front lawn.

Jamaludin also made a Jalur Gemilang and Perak state flag using mineral water bottles.

“That’s why it took me some time as I needed to drink the water first before I can colour the bottles and put it up,” he said, adding that he used a total of 275 bottles and 435 bottle caps for both flags.

Jamaludin said it saddens him that not many people are responding to calls to put up Jalur Gemilang at their homes during Merdeka month.

For Jamaludin, who fought the communist during the Emergency, putting up Jalur Gemilang can inculcate one’s patriotic spirit.

“Nowadays, it is hard to see anyone putting up even one flag at their homes,” he said.

On his wife Masitah Ismail’s urging, he also put up Jalur Gemilang at Masjid As-Syakirin.

Asked how long he would maintain the decoration, Jamaludin said he would probably remove them after the Malaysia Day celebration on September 16.