The hand that rocks the cradle is able to shake the world

By Dyana Sofya Mohd Daud, political secretary to MP of Gelang Patah

Since Parliament sitting is resuming, my friends from all over the country, YBs or not, flocked the city centre to exercise their duties.

With the little free time we had, we managed to squeeze in a movie session, and my friends decided to watch 300 : Rise of An Empire (SPOILER ALERT!), loosely based on Greek mythology. Although I haven’t seen the first installation (I know, I should!), I had the idea that this particular movie will be testosterone-infused with gory human flesh tearing scenes and over-dosage of unnecessary male abs display. Although it was not really my cup of tea, I chose to tag along.

A few minutes into the movie, we were introduced to two strong women, the graceful Queen Gorgo and the brilliant, manipulative Artemisia. Both wore swoon-worthy long-dresses into battles and were commanders of their respective armadas of thousands of men. Their courage, fearlessness and strength came from atrocious backstories which I am not going to describe here because you have to watch the entertaining piece of fiction yourself.

Our archipelago is not short of our own female warriors, for example, Tun Fatimah assisted Tun Perak, a Malaccan Bendahara in their fight against the Portuguese in the early 16th century. Tengku Tengah from Johor dared to face her father’s assailants with a sword and restored her father’s honour by allying with the Bugis. Kelantan’s Siti Wan Kembang was believed to rule the state from 1548 to 1580, was known for her beauty and ability to enter battle on horseback with a sword with an army of female horseriders.

In the case of Artermisia and Queen Gorgo, both women were beaten down at some point of their lives and tested with series of hardships and sufferings. Nonetheless, they picked up the pieces of their broken selves, rebuilt their lives and returned stronger than ever.

As Dato Seri Dr Wan Azizah once said, “lap air mata, teruskan perjuangan”. (Dry your tears, the fight must go on)

Recently, Kak Wan (as she is fondly referred to) was named as Pakatan Rakyat candidate for Kajang by-election for Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) and she will be contesting against Chew Mei Fun from Malaysian Chinese Association (MCA). As we all know, initially Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim was supposed to stand as a candidate until he was convicted with 5-years imprisonment. The ugly history of Dato Seri Anwar Ibrahim’s conviction in 1998 repeated itself and the coalition had to resort to a different strategy.

Kak Wan was seen wiping her tears when the court delivered its decision, like any other woman would. The gesture moved many. Malaysians, especially women from all background admired her courage, her strength, her faithfulness and her strong-will to brave these never-ending series of challenges in these many years. I was eleven when her husband was first imprisoned.

Put us in her shoes, we might not be able to survive the same ordeal.

From the wife of a Deputy Prime Minister, she became the wife to an ex-convict and now her husband might be imprisoned again. Kak Wan persevered instead of locking herself in a room. She did not avoid facing the world or cry her eyes out like any of us would do.

Kak Wan did the exactly opposite. She decided to stand in one of the most intense by-elections when she could have spent this few months with her husband who might be locked up again soon. She chose to offer herself to the rakyat once again and be a voice in Selangor state assembly. Kak Wan never gave up.

She even said at the Pakatan Rakyat 5th Convention “Walau sugul di hati, semangat masih tinggi”

Kak Wan was never a pretty puppet in a baju kurung. She is the definition of a woman. She is the epitome of the word srikandi. This woman, regardless of political affiliation deserves a standing ovation and our never-ending support. As the Malay saying goes, “Tangan yang menghayun buaian, mampu menggoncang dunia” (The hand that rocks the cradle is able to shake the world)

Now who says you can’t go into battle in a baju kurung?

However, I must add that no ‘angkat kain’ or ‘selinsing lengan’ is needed.


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