So the first Malaysian is already on the way to International Space Station. What I am proud of is he is a Malay and repeat history during the Malacca Sultanate era where a Malay also became the first man to sail round the world. It was not written in the history book because history is not written by us.
When I was in Form Five, one of the literature book for the Sastera Melayu is Panglima Awang. In the book it was told that Panglima Awang was captured by the Portuguese and taken back to Portugal. When he was in Portugal they were not allowed to sail back East and so sail West. The captain was Ferdinand Magellan and Panglima Awang was also on the ship. Unfortunately Ferdinand Magellan died in the Philippines and Panglima Awang continued the journey back to Malacca. So if what is depicted in the book is true, then history lied to the world that Ferdinand Magellan sail round the world. He did not complete the journey from Philippines back to Malacca where he was when his journey begins.
Today another Malay repeat history as the first man to go to space. Lets hope this small step of Dr Sheikh Muzaffar will spark a longer step for Malaysians.
According to the news there are 11,000 Malaysians applied to be this man to create a new chapter in the history book. And out of that 11,000 applicants, I am one of them.
Links to this programme
Official Angkasawan website
National Space Agency Malaysia