KUALA LUMPUR: The 68th Umno anniversary yesterday saw two role models being awarded the most outstanding Malay figure awards at the Putra World Trade Centre here.
Tan Sri Hassan Azhari, 86, bagged the Anugerah Tokoh Melayu Terbilang (men) for his contributions in sharing his knowledge of Islam and passion for preaching the religion.
Hassan called the azan (call to prayer) after first prime minister Tunku Abdul Rahman chanted “Merdeka, Merdeka, Merdeka” on Aug 31, 1957.
Hassan, who was born in Mecca, received the Tokoh Ma’al Hijrah award in 2002.
Tan Sri Dr Salma Ismail, 96, received the Anugerah Tokoh Melayu Terbilang (women) for her achievements in the medical industry.
Born in Alor Star, Dr Salma was the first Malay woman to become a doctor.
She faced many struggles, as it was an era when Malay families forbade their daughters from pursuing higher education.
She was the first Malay woman in Kedah to pass the Senior Cambridge examination and attended King Edward VII College of Medicine in Singapore in 1936 under a scholarship by the state.
She owns private clinics here and holds several positions, including chairmanships and directorships of medical-related firms.