JOHOR BARU: A total of RM200,000 has been allocated to the Johor Baru Tiong Hua Association to organise this year's Chingay parade, says Datuk Onn Hafiz Ghazi.
The allocation is given as a show of support from the state government for cultural programmes especially those that could strengthen the unity of the people, the Johor Mentri Besar said.
"I hope the allocation will be able to help the association organise this large scale celebration.
"We provide help to all people of Johor, regardless of their race, because we are colour-blind when it comes to giving back to the people," he said.
He said this during a speech at the Johor Baru Tiong Hua Association's Chinese New Year open house at Wisma Tiong Hua, here, on Sunday (Jan 22).
The state government had also allocated RM2.5mil to the Southern University College and RM1mil to the Foon Yew High School last year, he added.
"This is besides the aid we provided to the Chinese schools in Muar and Batu Pahat. We want to show that the state government is committed to taking care of the welfare of the Chinese community in Johor," he added.
The Machap assemblyman added that the Chinese community played an important role in developing the state and was one of the pillars that supported the unity and prosperity of the people in Johor.
"This is proven in the history of Johor, where, back in 1844, Temenggong Daeng Ibrahim invited Chinese planters from Singapore to plant gambier and pepper in the interior of Johor.
"As a result, between the 1830s and 1850s, Johor was the world's largest producer of pepper and gambier," he explained.
The Johor Ruler Sultan Ibrahim ibni Almarhum Sultan Iskandar had also revived the royal title of Mejar Cina (Chinese Major) in September 2020 and bestowed it on oil palm estate manager David Wong Khong Soon as a continuation of Johor’s modern history, he added.
During the programme, Onn Hafiz also read a speech in Mandarin that says the year 2023 will be a challenging year.
"But as the Johor Mentri Besar, together with the help of the state leaders, we will ensure that we lead Johor towards development and provide help to the people in the state," he said.