Bisaya ‘Pesta Bebulang’ mulls a comeback

Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas (centre) representing Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg as the guest of honour during the 2019 Pesta Babulang.

KUCHING, Feb 6: The Bisaya ‘Pesta Babulang’ and its famous Buffalo Race might make a comeback this year after a two-year hiatus.

In a statement here today, Sarawak Bisaya Association president Joseph Blandoi said their stagings are subjected to the latest Covid-19 pandemic situation.

According to him, its supreme council had outlined the festival and race as among the main events in its activities calendar this year in a recent meeting.

“Since the pandemic two years ago, many activities had either been shelved or put on the back burner, including the 50th anniversary celebration last year.

“We may have to modify the holding of our festival this year where several events will be held either physically or virtually or in a hybrid manner, and this shall be possible with technology,” he said.

Joseph noted that some of the events could be split up and held out throughout the year.

“Such options are inevitable to avoid overcrowding to comply with the health standard operating procedures (SOPs),” he said.

Joseph pointed out that premier events such as the buffalo race, cultural night stage show, and the “Panakod Babulang” (receiving of the Guest of Honour) would be carried out from June 3 to 5.

Tourists participating in the buffalo race during the 2019 Pesta Babulang.

He added that these events are popular among Brunei, Labuan, and Sabah tourists.

“Other activities lined up are the opening of the association building, a development seminar, workshop, ‘Rakit Babulang’ (rafting), Babulang charity golf, fun run, and the annual appreciation dinner gathering,” he said. — DayakDaily