KUCHING, Sept 16: The state level Malaysia Day celebration saw a modest reception with some 500 guests comprising various heads of government departments, community leaders, some state ministers and elected reps at the State Legislative Assembly (DUN) grand ballroom tonight.
The celebration started on time with the arrival of both Yang di-Pertua Negeri Tun Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud and Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg, and their respective wives Toh Puan Datuk Patinggi Raghad Kurdi Taib and Datin Patinggi Datuk Juma’ani Tun Tuanku Bujang at 8pm sharp.
They were ushered in by Minister-in-Charge of the celebration Datuk Abdul Karim Rahman Hamzah, Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri James Jemut Masing, Minister of Education, Science and Technological Research Dato Sri Michael Manyin, and Minister of International Trade and E-Commerce Dato Sri Wong Soon Koh.
There was no grand display of fireworks this time around but the formality of the celebration was intact as the gimmick was properly launched by Tun Taib and Abang Johari, which also included the cutting of a cake on stage to mark the celebration.
The national level Malaysia Day celebration was also celebrated at the same time, hosted by Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, with Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad making an appearance there.
Tun Mahathir was quoted in his speech, saying Putrajaya is committed to returning Sarawak and Sabah to their rightful status as two of three equal partners in the federation.
Although no remarks and comments has been said about this by any Sarawak state representatives, there has been a perception of discontent as this year Sarawak was suppose to host the national level celebration.
However after the change of government and Sarawak now being an opposition state, hosting was changed. Last year’s national level host was also Kota Kinabalu.
Sarawak hosted the national level Malaysia Day celebration in 2013 after the Sept 16 date was officially recognised by the federal government.
There were no speeches from the VIPs as well at tonight’s state level celebration.
There were some cultural and musical performances from local artists singing light jazzy tunes, including patriotic and local songs.
Taib however had to leave after the second course of the dinner, which was around 9.30pm.
The celebration continued with more singing and musical performances before the dinner officially ended around 10.30pm. — DayakDaily