Longhouse category likely at next year’s ‘Keceriaan Merdeka’ competition

Congratulations: Representatives from Kampung Tanjung Parang receiving their prize from Dr Hazland (third from left) as Zaini (second from left) looks on.

KUCHING: Longhouse folk may have the chance to show their patriotism come the 50th Merdeka celebration next year through the “Keceriaan Merdeka” competition.

The state Information Department revealed that it was in the midst of working out a new category with its headquarters specially for longhouses.

The competition, which awards the best patriotic decor, now has several categories namely traditional village, businesses, schools, archway and more.

The department’s deputy director Zaini Mohamad said it was time to include a category for longhouses given the state has some 5,000 longhouses.

“In a way, at next year’s 50th Merdeka Day celebration we hope to have this competition on a bigger scale so why not introduce a new category for longhouses. It is also to include the longhouse residents in this creative and patriotic event,” he said at the prize giving ceremony for the “Keceriaan Merdeka” state-level competition here on Sunday night.

He said the competition was held to spread the spirit of patriotism among Malaysians through sparking their creativity.

He said it also instilled togetherness as participation meant team effort with the exception of the individual entry category.

The competition was also held at the national-level and Sarawak sent in 157 entries in eight categories.

The state won two awards through SK Abang Ali Sibu in the school category while Kampung Tanjung Parang in Kota Samarahan won the traditional village category.

SK Abang Ali Sibu took home RM5,000 while Kampung Tanjung Parang received RM10,000. Both were also awarded at the state level.

“We received weak response from the private sector this year for reasons unknown but we’re hoping that they would be more enthusiastic next year,” Zaini said.

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