KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 22 — The prime minister’s wife, Tun Dr Siti Hasmah Mohd Ali, was honoured as Ibu Negara (Mother of the Nation) by the Asian Strategy and Leadership Institute (ASLI) at the National Women’s Day Celebration Gala Dinner 2019 held at a leading hotel here last night.
Chairman of ASLI and Founding Trustee of the Jeffrey Cheah Foundation (JCF), Tan Sri Dr Jeffrey Cheah said the award was in recognition of Dr Siti Hasmah’s outstanding sacrifice in resolutely supporting Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad in the prime minister’s nation-building journey.
“She is an icon who inspires us to celebrate our diversity as a multi-cultural, multi-racial and multi-religious nation.
“Tun Dr Siti Hasmah’s character and values reflect more than her caring and kind personality. They are the hallmarks of true leadership. She started by breaking barriers as one of the first Malay woman doctors in the country.
“Tun Dr Siti Hasmah also gained global recognition for her strong opposition to war, and heartfelt appeals for mercy on behalf of all the victims,” he said in his speech.
Cheah said Dr Siti Hasmah has won the enduring love, respect and admiration of all Malaysian with her charm, grace and elegance, and also her poise and composure.
At the event, JCF also launched the Tun Dr Siti Hasmah Mohd Ali Scholarship for Creative Arts and Music and contributed RM10 million to the fund.
Cheah presented the award to Dr Siti Hasmah witnessed by Dr Mahathir, and ASLI’s Independent Non- Executive Director Tan Sri Razman Hashim.
In her acceptance speech, Dr Siti Hasmah credited her success to her parents, brothers and sisters.
“I was hoping that my parents would have lived to see this, my late brothers and sisters are also here. They were the ones... who brought me up and for them to see me standing here receiving this prestigious award will be something great for them because they always thought that I was a tomboy,” said Dr Siti Hasmah who was visibly moved.
She also congratulated Cheah for establishing the scholarship.
“Age is no limit to anyone who wants to learn music and to know music is a precious art to everybody. To me learning music is a method of de-stressing when you in the blues,” she said. — Bernama