Suriani Abdullah, a well-known leader of the outlawed Communist Party of Malaya (CPM), died peacefully at 6am today at her home in Narathiwat, Thailand, after battling ill health for almost five years.
Suriani was born in 1924 as Eng Ming Ching, in Setiawan, Perak, and joined the underground CPM in 1940 at the age of 16.
She was then actively involved in organising women workers in the Kinta Valley and later participated in the anti-fascist guerrilla, the Malayan People’s Anti-Japanese Army (MPAJA).
She studied at the Nan Hwa High School in Setiawan together with CPM secretary-general Chin Peng and in 1975, became an elected member of the CPM’s central committee member.
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