Have you ever wondered how the faces behind the political powerhouses of Malaysia were when they were in their younger years?
While it’s easy to associate these prominent figures solely with their current roles and public appearances, but a trip down memory lane reveals a surprising twist!
1. Muhammad Sanusi Md Nor
To start off, we’ll begin with Muhammad Sanusi, the current Kedah MB.
Muhammad Sanusi was born in Sik, Kedah, as the seventh child among 15 siblings.
His educational path began at Sekolah Rendah Batu 5 and pursued his secondary education across several institutions, including Sekolah Menengah Sains Sultan Mohamad Jiwa in Sungai Petani, Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Sik, and Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Derma in Kangar, Perlis.
According to Harakah Daily, Sanusi faced setbacks during his schooling years, where he was dismissed twice due to behavioral issues and bullying his peers.
He later went on to attain a Bachelor of Arts in Social Science from Universiti Sains Malaysia (USM) and even undertook the role of a navy reserve officer cadet.
2. Wee Ka Siong
Former transport minister Wee Ka Siong is known to be a key figure in the Malaysian Chinese Association (MCA) as well as his amusing Parliament presentations, such as the debate on egg pricing and sizes earlier this year.
Born in Jasin, Melaka, Wee Ka Siong was born to a Hakka family and was mostly raised in Tampin, Negeri Sembilan.
His primary school years were spent at SJK(C) Yu Hsien, which were then followed by his secondary education at Sekolah Menengah Kebangsaan Datuk Bendahara.
In 1986, Wee enrolled himself in Universiti Teknologi Malaysia’s (UTM) Civil Engineering course, where he completed his studies in 1991.
He later went on to earn a PhD in Transportation Planning from UTM between 1996 and 2001, which also carved the way for him to have a spot in the Board of Engineers Malaysia (BEM).
3. Hannah Yeoh
Whenever we mention Hannah Yeoh, what comes to mind is either her autobiography Becoming Hannah, or the photo of her paying a visit to the Bukit Jalil National Stadium, which later quickly turned into a meme.
Hannah Yeoh currently serves as the Minister of Youth and Sports, a position she has held since December 2022.
Growing up in Subang Jaya, Yeoh’s pursued her primary education at SK Sri Subang Jaya, SRK SS19, and her secondary education at SMK Subang Utama.
She later pursued a law degree at the University of Tasmania in Australia and graduated in 2001.
At the young age of 34, Yeoh became the youngest speaker in Malaysia’s state legislative assembly history, where she was appointed as Speaker of Selangor’s state assembly in 2013.
4. Azalina Othman
Known for her tough ‘Iron Lady’ demeanor and witty comebacks, current law minister Azalina Othman is not one to be trifled with when it comes to debating her in Parliament thanks to her oratory skills.
Born in December 31, 1963, in Johor Bahru, Azalina’s diverse background is a blend of Buginese ancestry from her father’s side and Arab lineage from her mother’s.
Her early education years began at Convent Green Lane in Penang, which today is identified as one of the top schools in the state.
She then went on to pursue her studies at the London School of Economics and Political Science in the UK, where she earned her Master of Laws (LLM) in 1990.
As for her political journey, Azalina served as Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department during the Barisan Nasional (BN) administration under Najib Razak from July 2015 to May 2018.
She has also held her position as Pengerang MP since March 2004 and was appointed as Law Minister under the PH administration in December 2022.
Interestingly, Azalina was the host of several TV talk shows, including Dateline Malaysia and Lidah Pengarang on ntv7 before becoming a politician, where the shows focused on discussing politics, economics, and social issues.
5. Zahid Hamidi
Do you still remember the time when Deputy Prime Minister Zahid Hamidi wowed netizens last year with his Mandarin, where he said, “Wo mei you qian. Hen duo qian? Bu zhi dao, bu yao qian (I don’t have money. A lot of money? I don’t know, I don’t want money)?
A long-standing member of the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO), Zahid’s is widely recognised as a powerful figure in the political party, where he was appointed as UMNO’s leader and BN chairman since May 2018.
Hailing from Perak, Zahid pursued his higher education at the University of Malaya, earning his bachelor’s degree in 1976. He later went on to acquire a Certificate in Banking from Bank Negara Malaysia, where he began his career as a banker at OCBC.
As for his family background, Zahid was born to both Indonesian-born Malaysians and raised by Chinese foster parents, which attributed to his Mandarin fluency.
For his political history, Zahid is the only one so far to hold the Deputy Prime Minister position under two different administrations, one under BN and the other under PH.
So, there you have it! Were there any surprises that caught you off guard? Let us know in the comments!