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By Yee Mei
KUCHING, July 5: Sarawak’s racial and cultural diversity is a symbol of the people’s solidarity, harmony, and strength — making it the best model for a multi-ethnic society to enjoy prosperity together.
This was said by State Women, Early Childhood, and Community Wellbeing Development Minister Dato Sri Fatimah Abdullah during a dinner in honour of the 13th Associated Country Women of the World (ACWW) Area Conference for Southeast Asia and the Far East tonight, which was attended by Raja Permaisuri Agong Tunku Azizah Aminah Maimunah Iskandariah.
In line with the theme of the conference, ‘Diversity is Our Strength’, Fatimah said that Sarawak is the perfect example to showcase the strength of diversity.
“Sarawak, being highly diverse — socio-culturally, geographically, linguistically, politically, economically, and historically — provides clear evidence and testimonies to support the belief that diversity is our strength.
“Other than the quality of our political and administrative leadership, which are both visionary and pragmatic, we are blessed with Sarawakians who themselves fully understand and appreciate that our collective survival in these very competitive and challenging times depends a lot on our diversity.
“It is the strength which gives us the courage, resource and hope for a meaningful life,” she said.
On Her Majesty’s presence at the dinner, Fatimah said that they are aware that the ACWW is close to the Queen’s heart.
“Tuanku’s presence during this conference speaks volumes of Tuanku’s personal commitment towards enhancing our collective belief that diversity is not a contributing factor to disunity or factionalism in our society.
“Diversity, in fact, is a very important source of strength in enriching human understanding, respect, and a sense of collective accountability towards the betterment of mankind and dignified existence for all,” said Fatimah.
She added that diversity makes everyone unique and special, thus providing equal opportunity for every member to make their presence felt and their contribution meaningfully recognised.
“In other words, diversity promotes creativity and originality, and at the same time, provides and adds colour to an otherwise dull and monotonous life.
“Diversity too propagates critical thinking and encourages people to rethink, reframe, redefine, reinterpret, recontextualise and give new meanings to all things which are normally taken for granted,” she said.
Also present during the dinner were State Governor’s wife Toh Puan Datuk Patinggi Raghad Kurdi Taib who is also Sarawak Federation of Women’s Institutes (SFWI) patron, the Premier of Sarawak’s wife Datuk Amar Juma’ani Tun Tuanku Bujang, and ACWW world president Magdie de Kock. — DayakDaily