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What flags must our fishing vessels fly in our open seas?

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Shouldn’t our fishing boats be identifying themselves as Malaysian boats? In other words, is not our national flag a more reasonable display, wonders JD Lovrenciear.

During a Sunday drive to Konchang Laut in Morib, I came across a disturbing sight. Local fishing boats were flying the Barisan Nasional party flags.

It may appear as if this is nothing to shout about. Some might say, “Come on, what’s wrong.”

Now, when you are out into the wide open sea, what flags make sense?

Shouldn’t our fishing boats be identifying themselves as Malaysian boats? In other words, is not our national flag a more reasonable display.

We are talking about how the navy boats on patrol will identify and know if you have infringed. We are talking about what do you proudly present to the world outside our shore lines.

Or are we saying that displaying support for a political party supersedes identifying yourself from which country you have come to fish?

Or are we to maintain that when supporting a political party while out earning a living, plying your trade or fishing as in this case, one must display his or her loyalty to political party affiliation first?

Suppose all businesses on the mainland hosted political party flags on their premises instead of the national flag, what shall our conclusion or argument be?

It would be quite intriguing if the media would do a scoop to unearth what motivates or drives our fisher folk to fly a political party’s flag instead of the national flag.

Hopefully, this will not be swept away like the daily tides but we can anchor onto some truths and take corrective action if needed.

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This is important not because the election winds are blowing. Looking at the condition of the flags on these boats, this not a very recent development.

Have we reached a stage where our mindsets cannot differentiate between political parties, government and nation?

JD Lovrenciear, an Aliran member, is a Kuala Lumpur-based former professional who actively follows current affairs.

The views expressed in Aliran's media statements and the NGO statements we have endorsed reflect Aliran's official stand. Views and opinions expressed in other pieces published here do not necessarily reflect Aliran's official position.

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Johnson Lukose
15 Mar 2018 1.17pm

Malaysian flags only for open seas.
In the ports or jetty – any flag of choice & the choice is BN!

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