Environmentalist Gurmit Singh gets Merdeka Award

21 SEPTEMBER 2018, BY Asia Samachar


Seven six years old Gurmit Singh KS, the environmentalist said to be famous for his take-it-to-the-streets activism, has received yet another recognition for his contribution to the environment.

Gurmit is one of the seven recipients of the 2018 Merdeka Award. He was recognised for his contribution in the field of environment.

Historian and academician Prof Emeritus Dr Khoo Kay Kim and University Malaya economist Prof Dr Rajah Rasiah received the award for outstanding scholastic achievement.

The others were ‘Father of Malaysia’s Animation’ Hassan Abd Muthalib (education and community category); Universiti Putra Malaysia Dean of Veterinary Medicine Faculty, Professor Dr Mohd Hair Bejo, and pharmacologist Datuk Dr Gan Ee Kiang (health, science and technology category); and British cave explorer Andrew James Eavis (outstanding contribution to the people of Malaysia category).

Established by the oil and gas giants in Malaysia, Petronas, ExxonMobil and Shell in 2007, the Merdeka Award recognises and rewards Malaysians and non-Malaysians who have made outstanding and lasting contributions to the country and its people.

To date, 49 individuals, including this year’s recipients, as well as two organisations, have been conferred the prestigious award.

In 2017, Prof Dr Balbir Singh was one of the award recipients. Dr Balbir from Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas) and Dr Timothy William were jointly awarded the award under the Health, Science and Technology category for their incredible contribution to the discovery and pioneering work on a new course of human malaria, plasmodium knowlesi.

Born in 1942 to Punjabi parents in Japanese-occupied Malaya, Gurmit founded two pioneering NGOs — Environmental Protection Society, Malaysia (EPSM) and Centre for Environment, Technology and Development, Malaysia (CETDEM).

Despite his tumultuous relationship with the authorities, he was conferred the Langkawi Environmental Award in 1993, according to the publishier’s note of his book, Memoirs of a Malaysian Eco-Activist, released in 2017.



Dr Edison Lee Tian Khoon
Dr Edison headed to Sweden’s Uppsala University, where he joined the Department of Chemistry, Ångström Laboratory, as part of his attachment stint. He is currently carrying out active research in polymer electrolyte and nanomaterials for Lithium-ion batteries. Read more about him here:
Innovating the Energy Ecosystem
Chrishen R. Gomez
Having attended the prestigious Ivy League Brown University as part of his attachment programme, 27-year-old Chrishen is now with the Wildlife Research and Conservation Unit at Oxford University. Chrishen is busy developing a genetic-based research project on the Sunda Clouded Leopard. Read more about him here: Conserving Our Forests & Future
Dr Zetty
Dr Zetty is currently working on anti-cancer compounds found in Malaysian seaweed and has continued to pursue her original project proposal of microalgae vaccine carriers for fish. A working solution has been patented by Dr Zetty and will be deployed within the coming year.
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