A story of an eight-year-old Malaysian girl going out of her way to find help so that her friend can attend online classes with her has touched thousands of Malaysians' hearts online
The story was shared by Bukit Mertajam member of Parliament (MP) Steven Sim, who has a history of giving the residents in his constituency the help that they need amidst the pandemic.
In a Facebook post published yesterday, 23 June, Sim said a Standard Two student named Ashley recently came to him for help after not seeing her friend Nur during online classes.
According to Sim, Ashley and Nur are classmates in a Chinese national school in his constituency in Penang.
"When Ashely found out that Nur did not have a device to take online classes, she felt very sad," said the MP.
"She remembered her mother once said that there was an 'uncle' who gave free devices to students. She then asked her mother to get help from the 'uncle'."
It was then Ashley came to Sim's office for help. She shared Nur's predicament with the MP.
Sim found out that Nur's father works as a security officer, who makes RM1,200 a month. He has to support his pregnant wife and two children who are attending school.
"Their family also felt sad that Nur could not attend online classes, but what (can they) do?" he continued.
"Actually, due to the limited supply, the 'Asal Cek Mau Pi Sekolah' programme does not cover students under Standard Four. But how can I refuse an eight-year-old who requested for help?"
Touched by how much Ashley cared for Nur, Sim said he could not ignore her request.
"So, I decided to use my own money to give Nur a Samsung Tab A," he said.
"Today (23 June), Ashley took me to Nur's house. The two classmates met again today after not seeing each other for so long. They were so happy."
"You have made us all realise that the hatred against different skin colours is not human nature. Compassion wins today."
At the time of writing, Sim's post has gone viral with over 10,000 likes and 870 shares
Many netizens thanked the MP for helping the children, while others celebrated the friendship between Ashley and Nur.
Even former youth and sports minister Syed Saddiq Syed Abdul Rahman can be found in the comments section.
"Always the best, bro," said Syed Saddiq, who is also the Muar MP.
"What a story. This is what Malaysia is all about. Malaysian unity at its best. Many so-called 'leaders' in our country should learn from both [these] girls. Keep up the good work, YB," lauded a Facebook user.
"It's really touching the story involved love between two races, how beautiful! It's even more touching YB Sim's determination not to disappoint the needy kid. Thank you, YB. May you be blessed with good health," cheered another netizen.
"Congratulations, YB. Really touched. Children know more about the value of love regardless of skin colour, faith, and race. This is what should be applied from now on because what happens in some adults is very different as they always preach about rank and wealth. YB, the value of love in YB's area should be an example to others," said one person.