Sabah govt to start organising state-level Christmas and CNY do


KOTA KINABALU: Sabah government will officially host state-level Chinese New Year and Christmas celebrations starting from this year, says Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor.

Announcing this, Hajiji said the inclusion of the two festivities was a continued effort on the state government’s part to celebrate diversity in the state.

“We have decided to officially host the state level Chinese New Year celebration, similar to the Hari Raya Aidilfitri and Kaamatan (harvest) Festival celebrations.

“It will help in fostering and maintaining harmony and cooperation among multiracial and multi-religious communities here,” he said at the Sandakan district-level Chinese New Year open house yesterday.

The Chief Minister said open houses during every festivity was a good platform to sow and nurture harmony.

“Let us take advantage of these celebrations to strengthen unity among the people,” he added.

On the first day of Chinese New Year, Hajiji, together Yang di-Pertua Negeri Tun Juhar Mahiruddin and wife Toh Puan Norlidah RM Jasni attended the open house hosted by the state government and the Federation of Chinese Associations Sabah (FCAS).

More than 10,000 people from all walks of life joined in the celebration where guests were entertained by lion dance performances spiced with cultural and modern performances.

A 350-feet long dragon replica was placed at SICC plaza to mark the event.

Organising chairman Datuk Christina Liew said the event was unique with the presence of some 400 people in traditional costumes from Sabah’s 38 native ethnic groups as well as 15 Chinese clan associations.

In SARAWAK, Yang di-Pertua Negeri Tun Dr Wan Junaidi Tuanku Jaafar and his wife Toh Puan Fauziah Mohd Sanusi were among the 5,000 guests who attended the open house held at the Borneo Convention Centre.

Also present were Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof and National Unity Minister Datuk Seri Aaron Ago Dagang.

Aaron said the unique Malaysian culture of celebrating all festivals together strengthens relations between the different races.

“This shows that we recognise and respect the diversity of our cultures and races as all our festivals are celebrated together,” he said.

In LABUAN, its MP Datuk Dr Suhaili Abdul Rahman and local residents attended several open houses hosted by prominent businessmen and industry leaders.

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