The McDonald’s Bukit Bintang outlet is displaying the Mekdi signage, in conjunction with Merdeka and Malaysia Day. The McDonald’s Bukit Bintang restaurant is the very first McDonald’s to open its doors in Malaysia back in 1982. - NSTP/EMAIL

KUALA LUMPUR: McDonald’s Malaysia is celebrating its 37th anniversary as a Malaysian company, and it’s a celebration like no other.

In conjunction with Merdeka and Malaysia Day, McDonald’s Malaysia is using its nickname ‘Mekdi’ (localised McD, a short form for McDonald’s), to celebrate its Malaysian-ness. And ‘Mekdi’ is now proudly displayed at the iconic Bukit Bintang restaurant.

Why iconic, you might ask? Well, it’s the first ever McDonald’s restaurant to open in Malaysia back in 1982! That’s almost as old as this writer.

“For the past 37 years, Malaysians have helped develop McDonald’s brand to what it is today. As an appreciation for their continuous support, we’ve decided to use the friendly nickname ‘Mekdi’, which is now synonymous with our brand,” explained McDonald’s Malaysia vice-president and chief marketing officer Melati Abdul Hai.

In celebrating the Merdeka month, McDonald’s Malaysia has also introduced its own version of Nasi Lemak McD, which is fast becoming a Malaysia’s favourite. The dish comes with fragrant rice cooked with coconut milk, crispy anchovies, fresh slices of cucumber, fried egg, and spicy, mouth-watering sambal.

But wait, the Malaysian-ness does not stop there.

Realising the popularity of Nasi Lemak among Malaysians, McDonald’s Malaysia has also started a petition via Change.org website to recognise Nasi Lemak as the official National Dish of Malaysia, with the target of one million signatures by Malaysia Day on Sept 16.

To date, 7,196 people have signed the petition. To sign the petition, go to http://chng.it/LDfjGDJsQs.