Unbreakable “Porcelain Doll”

(Alor Star, Nov 4) At first glance, Lee Zhi Peng seems just like any other recent Year Six graduate. Taking a closer look, he is anything but ordinary. As an eight-month-old baby, Lee had a fall and fractured his bones. He was later diagnosed with osteopsathyrosis, a hereditary disease marked by extreme brittleness of bones.

The nickname “porcelain doll” isn’t the only unusual thing about this gutsy boy. The 12-year-old takes a keen interest in Malaysian politics, naming Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng as his ‘idol’. Since he was in Year One, Zhi Peng has been following news about the DAP Secretary General. His biggest dream is to meet Lim one day and to sincerely wish him “all the best”.

Last Thursday, Lee received the ‘Best Spirit’ Award during the graduation ceremony of SJK(C) Pumpong, Alor Star. Since Year Three, Zhi Peng’s ambition was to become a lawyer. He dreams of upholding justice and helping the needy; following in the footsteps of his inspiration – Lim Guan Eng.

Met at an interview together with his parents Lee Qi Chang and Zhou Mei Xuan, Zhi Peng’s maturity beyond his years and passion for politics is hard to come by. He follows the news without fail every day, paying special attention to items about Lim Guan Eng.

“I admire him for his courage and the sacrifices he has made for the people, for justice,” says Zhi Peng. The boy is full of praises for Lim’s leadership in Penang. He feels sad every time he sees negative or false news about Lim being reported in the media. He has yet to have the chance to meet Lim in person.

Many may associate osteopsathyrosis with being ‘fragile’ or ‘weak’, but Zhi Peng is a true fighter who will not stay down, nor allow himself to be weak. He always passes his exams with flying colors, maintaining an impressive 80% average grade through his six years of primary school (except in Year Four, where he scored 79%). His perseverance and hard work earned him the Best Spirit Award in school.

Zhi Peng spends at least two hours a day revising his homework. Besides studying, he also enjoys listening to mandarin songs, watching TV and reading comics. The gutsy “porcelain doll” scored 5A’s and 2Bs for his UPSR trial exam.

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