Tomorrow, the world celebrates International Women’s Day and together, we commemorate the social, political and economic achievements of women everywhere, celebrate women and their roles, while highlighting world attention on areas having need for further action.
Declared by the United Nations, the theme for this year’s International Women’s Day is Inspiring Change, and it encourages advocacy for women’s advancement in every way. It also calls for challenging the status quo for women’s equality and vigilance, inspiring positive change.
At Lipstiq, we’re taking the time to thank some powerful and inspiring women in Malaysia who have constantly been fighting for our rights as ladies and are true Malaysian heroes we should all look up to.
When it comes to sports, who can deny Datuk Nicol Ann David? Not only she is the number one women’s squash player in the world, she is one of the greatest sports stars Malaysia has ever produced. Besides winning countless titles and awards all in the good name of squash, Datuk Nicol is also now campaigning for squash to be included in the Olympic games. Hopefully, it’ll all work out and Malaysia will get a gold medal for squash!
In Malaysia, nobody ever did film better than the late and beloved Yasmin Ahmad. Film maker and director extraordinare, she touched the hearts of Malaysians and have always reminded us of racial unity, proving to be the true 1Malaysia icon. Loved by many, her movies and commercials that challenged racial discrimination have impacted many of our lives effortlessly and we will always remember her as the true ambassador of a united Malaysia.
Daughter of our previous Prime Minister Tun Dr. Mahathir Mohamad, Datin Paduka Marina Mahathir impacted Malaysians by voicing out her strong thoughts and opinions on social issues, transforming the negative stigma on HIV/AIDS issues and shining their plight in a more deserving light. She is a powerful leader in many non-governmental organisations and is also a socio-political blogger who’s empowered many Malaysians. Being her father’s shadow, Marina was also placed 57th in a New York-based advocacy list of the 100 most inspirational women around the world.
If we were to name one person that’s always been on a quest to uphold human rights and inspire democracy in Malaysia, it would be Dr. Ambiga Sreenevasan. She’s the person that triggered Malaysians to realise the importance of their constitutional rights and to utilise their power as citizens to pressure the government into holding free and fair elections. In 2009, she was also awarded the Secretary of State’s International Women of Courage Award in which United States Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said she “stood up for religious tolerance” and she has been “a resolute advocate of women’s equality and their full political participation”.
Being the first ever Malaysian woman who made it big in Hollywood, Dato’ Michelle Yeoh was put on the world map after she starred in the James Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies with Pierce Brosnan. Highly respectable and perfectly poised, she has starred in the Academy Award-winning film Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon as well as Hollywood movies such as Memoirs of a Geisha. Michelle also received the honour of being the first Malaysian to join the star-studded panel of voters to decide the winners of the 2013 Academy Awards.