THE PM & THE VIRGIN & THE ‘NASI LEMAK’: 24-YEAR-OLD SITI HAJJAR FLATTERED BY NAJIB’S COMPLIMENTS DURING SPEECH
SHAH ALAM 21 OCTOBER 2016. Pemilik Nasi Lemak Anak Dara, Siti Hajjar Ahmad. STR/MUHAMMAD SULAIMAN
SHAH ALAM – For Siti Hajjar Ahmad, better known as the woman behind the popular ‘Nasi Lemak Anak Dara’, being mentioned as a good entrepreneurial example by the Prime Minister during the 2017 Budget tabling today, was not even a remote possibility two months ago.
The 24-year-old university graduate started the business to help her mother, and never thought her effort would draw the attention of many, much less the prime minister.
Siti Hajjar said she was speechless upon learning that her name was mentioned by Datuk Seri Najib Razak. She said she happy and proud at the same time.
“I decided to sell nasi lemak after graduating from Universiti Tun Hussein Onn so as to not waste time, and to also help my mother, while waiting for a job offer.
“My friends were of great help. They were the ones who loaned me RM500 to start, which I used to buy my cooking utensils, pots and pans, as well as the tables and chairs at my stall.
“Recipe-wise, I’m grateful for my mother, who was more than willing to share her secrets in making delicious nasi lemak has been a family staple for years,” she said when met at the PKNS Complex parking area, today.
Siti Hajjar was participating in the four-day Best Street Food Festival, which started on Thursday. She said her mother’s sambal recipe was the secret to the business’s success.
The electronic engineering graduate said she did not have any experience in business, but regarded it as a challenge. Siti Hajjar said fresh graduates should not be afraid to venture into business instead of waiting around for jobs, especially in the current sluggish economic climate.
“Don’t be ashamed to do business. Take the risk and just go with the flow. “Of course, we will make mistakes but it is through mistakes that we will learn how to survive.”