KUALA LUMPUR: Health director-general Tan Sri Dr Noor Hisham Abdullah will bid farewell to his post this Friday after serving 35 years in the country's public healthcare.
In a tweet yesterday evening, Dr Noor Hisham expressed his feelings in a few verses of a Malay 'pantun'.
"Kapal layar kemudi cermat, bijak nakhoda melawan gelora, 35 tahun setia berkhidmat, tiba detiknya waktu bersara.
"Langit dan mega luas terbentang, kadangnya cerah yang gelap menanti, teruskan berjasa pimpinan mendatang, yang patah tumbuh yang hilang berganti."
He also shared several photographs of his retirement ceremony held at the Health Ministry yesterday.
Dr Noor Hisham held the post as Health director-general since 2013, and was one of the key leaders in managing the Covid-19 pandemic in the country.
He was also dubbed a "hero" by many for his excellent leadership throughout the crisis and was considered to be an important figure in giving updated information on the Covid-19 situation.
Many well-wishers in their reply to his tweet thanked him for his service and hard work, with some even taking the time to reply to his pantun.
Twitter user Si Pitung (@ali_kunji) said: "Kapal layar selamat berlabuh, jangan lupa tali ditambat, jasa dan bakti akan tetap tumbuh, sudah waktunya untuk berehat.
"Pokok selasih tumbuhnya subur, banyak terdapat di tepi bendang, terima kasih dan selamat berundur, jasamu tetap kami kenang."
Zil Falilah also took the opportunity to express her gratitude for his exemplary work, and also shared a verse of a pantun.
"Happy retirement Dr Noor Hisham and thank you for your outstanding service.
"Panjang sungguh jambatan Pulau Pinang, Sempat berhenti di Tanjung Uban, jasa Tan Sri tetap dikenang, semoga diberkati diredhai tuhan," she added.
Meanwhile, Health Minister Dr Zaliha Mustafa took to Facebook and paid tribute to Dr Noor Hisham, praising him for his contributions to public healthcare.
She said Dr Noor Hisham had 35 years of meaningful service with many involvements and achievements both domestically and globally.
His long commitment to his work, she added, was fully utilised to build Malaysia's healthcare service to be on par with foreign countries.
"I believe your service will not end here. In fact, it is still needed for the country's medicine and health development.
"On behalf of the Health Ministry, I would like to wish you happy retirement and I express my deepest gratitude to you for your service, devotion, and contribution throughout your work in the ministry."