Rekindling the passion for Bukit Mertajam


Bukit Mertajam MP Steven Sim is embarking on a unique project to rekindle pride in Bukit Mertajam, one of the less known – but no less charming – towns on mainland Penang.

Sunset at Bukit Mertajam - Photograph: Haha Lee
Sunset at Bukit Mertajam – Photograph: Haha Lee

Let’s hear it from Steven:

Everybody loves their hometown. There’s something magical about the old lanes and bricks which watched us growing up, memories we left behind when we move out elsewhere but never really left us.

I found this is true for Bukit Mertajam. We like to think of Bukit Mertajam as the greatest place on earth (hahaha…), but in its own little way perhaps, it is. After all the town gave us Abdullah Ahmad Badawi Malaysia’s fifth Prime Minister who spent his high school years here, and Anwar Ibrahim the future Prime Minister of Malaysia who grew up here.

We’ve got Lee Chong Wei, the country’s badminton maestro. We’ve got famous artistes and writers and painters and innovators.

There are whispers going around saying Bukit Mertajam has the largest fixed deposit in the whole of north Malaysia (some even say in the whole of Malaysia).

Heck, legend even has it that aliens from another planet visited SRK Stowell, well attested in the old school magazines and newspapers.

And of course, we can go on and on about the history, the food, the scenery and the who’s who.

But to many BM boys and girls, Bukit Mertajam is simply the idyllic home which nurtured us and gave us the best in life before we went on to reach our own dreams.

When I ran my campaign in the last election, I said it was a neighbourhood campaign by a local BM boy. Now I am continuing this neighbourhood campaign, but this time, I hope to rekindle the energy of BM boys and girls, their creativity, their passion, and especially their love for Bukit Mertajam.

This month from 10-24 November, as I launch my service centre, I am doing it slightly different. I am also launching an “I Love Bukit Mertajam” campaign which consists of a series of community programmes to bring people together.

There will be photo exhibitions, seminars, talks, songs, a health check, kids’ programmes, a green exhibition and more. You can get the details at or

But most importantly, this will be the start of a long term campaign to bring Bukit Mertajam together as we continue to be a great town, the greatest in Malaysia, and on earth. 🙂

Please join me in this campaign. Help to spread the word. If you are not convinced Bukit Mertajam is beautiful, check out this sunset photo by Haha Lee. His highly-acclaimed work will be on exhibition during the campaign period.

proudly a BM boy,

— Steven

P/s: The launch of my service centre will take place on 15 November 2013 at 7.30pm together with the “I Love Bukit Mertajam” Concert – at Taman Ciku. Info here.

P/s: For more info on the “I Love Bukit Mertajam” campaign and how you can take part, check out or

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7 Nov 2013 12.47pm

Bukit Mertajam produced Penang’s first Speaker for the Legislative Assembly, Datuk Ooh Chooi Cheng. He was later the Deputy Chief Minister in Tun Dato’ Seri Dr. Lim Chong Eu’s administration.

7 Nov 2013 10.18am

Actually, Malaysia do have beautiful sights and interesting places. However, the locals will not bother to promote their beauty, because it was there for years. It takes creative minds to bring out the beauty of a simple sunset. A hot spring is no longer accessible to the locals, FOC, because politician will hand it over to their cronies, and fenced up as private property. There is one in Pahang, near Bentong,one in Pedas, Negeri Sembilan, turned into water theme park one in Sungkai Felda, where you have ro pay RM7.00 per entry, cannot bring your own chicken egg some more.… Read more »

8 Nov 2013 8.35am
Reply to  sallangtioman

Entrance to Teluk Bahang Forest Reserve (formerly site of End of the World Seafood Restaurant) also fenced up. The forest hiking path cemented with sharp 90 degree steps-edges (not horizontal tubular wood bars reinforced into paths) at the 1st 300 metres making it fatally dangerous should one fall or slip during rainy days – a free-maintenance lazy-mentality of BolehLand?) The same with Youth Park & Bukit Jambul forest paths for hikers. I guess the persons who planned, designed, approved & built these horrendously dangerous paths are no hikers themselves. Soon much of our hills will be out-of-bound (fenced up with… Read more »

7 Nov 2013 9.36am

Well done, Steven. By organizing activities like Gotong Royong among the communities, can even prevent the breeding of Dengue mosquitoes.
Organizing monthly Fiesta can help small businesses.
This is a better way to unite the people, than National Service program.

6 Nov 2013 9.04pm

BM produced the first local IGP- Tun Mohamad Salleh Ibrahim

Stephen Tan Ban Cheng
6 Nov 2013 10.59am

Yes, Tung Lang. I agree with you and differ from Ah Pek. Ah Pek, do you know anything about journalism? Please don’t comment on something you do not know, okay?

BM may be a small little town, but its St Anne’s annual festival is something that only BM can enjoy!

5 Nov 2013 9.52pm

I don’t know much about Bukit Mertajam, I believe MP Steven Sim is doing the right thing – giving due recognition, awareness & appreciation for his home town’s heritage: people & history.
Unfortunately Penang Island’s Ori-Maestros are not given a sand of appreciation. That’s the price of frenzy blink-blink Cosmopolitan Penang for the richie & famous.
Soon, Penang’s so-called street food will be recipe-formulated, bastardised & cooked by Vietnamese, Bangla & Indonesians. May be in the fray, also by Congo Africans who loves Penang Kopi-O kau kau!

Chin Tann Kaw
Chin Tann Kaw
6 Nov 2013 11.21am
Reply to  tunglang

Bukit Mertajam could be a better choice to settle down if ever wanna migrate out of Penang island.

Stephen Tan Ban Cheng
5 Nov 2013 8.00pm

If I am not mistaken, this little town gave Malaysians one of the best world-acclaimed engineers – Tan Sri Chin Fung Kee – who also headed the project to build our first Penang bridge. And never forget that Tan Sri Wong Pow Nee, Penang’s first and almost always under-rated chief minister, also came from this little town.

Obviously, in terms of size, it is punching above its weight when it comes to spawning leaders.

5 Nov 2013 7.59pm

Why not.Go for it !

Ah Pek
Ah Pek
5 Nov 2013 5.05pm

Anil, you are so disgusting and shamelessly cheat us the innocent readers! This is not an article about any issues, it is BLATANTLY A PIECE OF PUBLICITY FOR DAP SERVICE CENTRE!!!!!! Please be neutral next time or you will be regarded as part of DAP supporter club just like Perkasa to UMNO.

We need neutral and unbias voices in Malaysia. Enough of faked independent bodies that in reality a supporter for their hidden master just like Perkasa.

6 Nov 2013 5.52pm
Reply to  Ah Pek

Ah Pek should just stick to reading NST.