• Melissa Kartini

#MyMalaysiaMyHome: Team Saddiq

Updated: Jan 28, 2019


I first met Syed Saddiq on the 18th of August 2017 at an event that was organized by DAP USJ Subang Jaya. The event was called “Beyond the Headlines – A Youth Forum”. I was able to listen to him speak about the current situation in Malaysia and thereby open our eyes to look just beyond the headlines and clickbait titles that different media companies post online. I was mind blown and told myself that very day that I will take politics seriously and be passionate for the change we want and need in Malaysia, especially among the youths. And ever since then I have been following the news closely both online and on television as I wanted to keep myself updated on what is actually going on in the country I call my home. It frustrated me that every time Malaysia is mentioned in international news, it’s always something bad. Like why la? 

As the days went by, my passion for politics and wanting to know more about politics and the country became stronger. I wasn’t afraid to show my interest in politics though most of the time I got shunned or pushed aside because of my age. Apparently if you’re young, it means you know nothing about politics, like bruh? But anyways, so yeah, one day, as I was scrolling through my Instastory, I came across Syed Saddiq’s post asking for volunteers to help out for a campaign. I hesitated at first because I doubted my capabilities to actually make a change in this country, but after speaking to a few people, I felt that it was the right thing to do. And I can promise you, it was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made in my life. A few weeks went by and I thought, “Oh wells, maybe they have enough volunteers already, so whatever la.” Guess what? I spoke too soon. 

On the 12th of March 2018, I was added to a Whatsapp group called “Team Saddiq 01.” Got to admit, I had a fangirl moment. But then it hit me that I was actually part of a change-making process that will happen in Malaysia, like I didn’t know what I was getting myself into, but I was surely all in as long as I can say that I helped Syed Saddiq win #GE14. Who knew at that time la that he was going to win, but I surely had faith. Because “The things which are impossible with men are possible with God” – Luke 18:27.

We had our first official team meeting on the 3rd of April 2018 (Tuesday). As you can see I keep tabs on the dates. Get it? Cause I’m Tabs. Nevermind. Back to the story, so yes as I was saying, we had our first meet up with the core team and Syed Saddiq at Menara Yayasan, Petaling Jaya. Lucky for me, I knew Selina, so it wasn’t really awkward. More and more people started coming into the meeting venue, and as Selina and I were helping peel eggs for the nasi lemak, I saw someone who looked like Tun Mahathir walk past. I wasn’t too sure so I told Sel about it and she immediately grabbed my wrist and pulled me towards his direction. And I was starstruck. Tun M was right in front of me, like wtheck even. So obviously I asked for a picture AND NOW HE IS OUR FREAKING PRIME MINISTER LIKE OMG YES THANK YOU LORD!! 

So after that whole starstruck moment, we entered the hall, cleared up our egg-peeling station and patiently waited for the meeting to start. And jeng jeng jeng! Syed Saddiq walked into the room, and I can bet 80% of the people in the room were probably going through a fangirl/boy mode. HAHAHA! We started off with dinner and then proceeded on to the meeting. Saddiq explained to us the why behind the what we were going do, as the campaigning period is the most vital stage of any election. After that, Numan and Jean briefed us on the different roles and teams that were available for us to volunteer in. Initially, I had my mind fixed on helping out with social media, but I felt a nudge in my heart to volunteer for the gerak gempur team, which is the “on ground” team that will be in Muar when needed.

Trust me, sitting in the group and listening to different ideas that were being suggested by other people, I just sat there asking God, “What am I even doing in this team?” Like everyone was giving creative ideas on how we were going to campaign in Muar, Johor and attract the crowd, and I was just there like mehh. But I somehow still pushed myself to at least give one or two suggestions, didn’t care if they were going to be used or not, at least I contributed. Right after the meeting, our team leader Aidille told us that he would need some of us to go down to Muar on the 7th of April 2018 (Saturday) which was just 4 days away. Initially, I wasn’t sure if I would be able to go, but thank God for my parents, because they allowed me to go. 

There was a big event going on and they needed as much help as they could get. It was an event where Tun M, Tan Sri Muhyddin, Syed Saddiq, Yeo Bee Yin and a few other politicians were going to be there. What we had to do as volunteers were to pass out flyers and recruit Muar-ians to sign up as volunteers themselves. I am glad that the response we received from the people was positive and uplifting. The event went on till late, but that was the day when Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman was announced as the Pakatan Harapan Candidate for Parliment Muar. The crowd was excited and so were we. Imagine a young, influential and very much prominent person among the youth of today being announced as a parliamentary candidate, who wouldn’t be happy? Finally there is someone who can be the voice for the youths of Malaysia. The event was attended by close to 10K people. 

By the time the event ended, we were drenched in sweat and super duper extremely tired. But my heart was full as the event was a success and most importantly nobody got hurt whatsoever. Pictures are before and after the event: 

We headed back to KL that same night. I reached home around 3AM and was at church by 9.30AM. Was I tired? HECK YES. Did I regret? NOPE. There’s something about being able to play a part in making Malaysia the country it should be, but at the same time not knowing if it will benefit anyone in anyway. Through this entire experience, with just this one event, I cultivated the habit of being grateful. To be grateful for the small things, big things and everything in between. Meeting the team from all different races and religions (which doesn’t much matter to me, because we are all human).

I learned to be more respectful and definitely to give honour where honour is due. Because sometimes, all a person needs is the reassurance that what we are doing is right, and I am proudly saying that what kept me going throughout the whole entire 1 month being a part of #TeamSaddiq was the constant “thank yous” that we got not only from the Muar-ians (I like to call them that) but from the man himself, Syed Saddiq. He took time out of his busy schedule, be it just 15 minutes to be with us as a team, just to express his gratitude and appreciation for the hard work the team did. That was what made all that the gerak gempur team did more worth it. 

Signing off,

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