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We Are The Champions !


The Karnival Pertandingan 1, held on 18 and 19 April 2001 at Maktab Perguruan Tunku Bainum, Bukit Mertajam witnessed Penang Free School sending its Debate Team, M2 champs and, by virtue of Yap Ling Seang being State Champ 2000, a public speaker.

The debate team consisted of Lim Chong Jin, Arif Zaini, Noel Chow, Sanjiv Indran and Eswaran Navaratnam. The public speaker was Neoh Joon Kee. Mr Thomas and Miss Teh plus a number of supporters accompanied them on their quest. Miss Mabel was also present on the 18th.

On the first day, only one debate involved the team, that is, Convent Bukit Mertajam as the Government versus PFS as the opposition. They debated the topic “Patriotism Ensures the Nation’s Survival”. Despite several slip-ups, PFS had the better stand and emerged victorious, concluding the day’s events.

April 19 saw the bulk of Free School’s involvement. First up in the early morning was the debate on materialism against Chung Ling Butterworth. A heated debate this was, but the government side, Penang Free School, prevailed with a unanimous decision.

At the same time, the Public Speaking Contest saw Free School’s representative enlightening the crowd about mankind’s role in preserving the environment with a rather light-hearted speech entitled “Born to be Green”. In the impromptu contest, he spoke about a book, Chronicles of the Twentieth Century, and what he learnt from it. Competition, however, was rather stiff, and the judges deliberated before revealing that the results would be announced later.

In the afternoon, the debate team, representing the government, squared off against St Xavier’s Institution. PFS managed to prove that technocrats are the future leaders while the opposition could only muster token resistance at best.

Finally, the prize-giving ceremony was held. There was initial disappointment as the public speaker ended up as the second runner-up. However, joy was reinstated as the order of the day as the debate team was crowned State Champions. Well, you win some, and you lose some, so the entire contingent returned with a tired but happy look on their faces.

Neoh Joon Kee

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