Pesta Kaamatan now celebrated around world – Pairin

PENAMPANG: The Pesta Kaamatan (Harvest Festival) is no longer celebrated just in Sabah but also around the world, according to Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan.

With the assistance of the state and federal governments, the festival is now a tourist attraction as it introduces the culture, tradition and rites of the KadazaDusun Murutas well as those of other ethnicities in Sabah to the world, he said.

Pairin, who is the Huguan Siou (Paramount Leader) of the KadazanDusun and also the state level Pesta Kaamatan main organizing committee chairman, said details about the Harvest Festival celebrations have been spread far and wide with today’s information and communication technology.

This directly means the information has been recorded in a database that will become important reference materials for the future generation, he said in his speech at the launch of the annual Traditional Sports by Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman at the KDCA grounds here yesterday.

Pairin expressed hope that dying or rarely used practices will be revived for the benefit of all, especially the younger generation.

“As I have said earlier, the state and federal governments have given their full support to the effort in organizing the annual celebration. Other than that, they have also given support to the development of the KadazanDusun Murut community by including them in the country’s development agenda,” he said.

“This include the federal government’s agreement to set up a KDM College in Kampung Kaingaran, Tambunan,” he said.

Pairin said he is confident Musa will continue to lead the state government towards dynamic and realistic development in order to improve the socio-economy of the people in Sabah.

“The presence of the Chief Minister and wife is a firm testament of the Kaamatan celebrations and how close this cultural event is to the heart of the Chief Minister,” he said.

“Coming from a mixed background, he is indeed a fine example of a true one Malaysian citizen. Your attendance and participation in the Kaamatan celebration indeed helps to intensify the meaning of our cultural understanding and reflect the kind Malaysian unity that we need to work together for a better future of Sabah and also Malaysia.

“On behalf of the state and implementing Kaamatan committee, I would like to extend our most sincere thanks and gratitude for the financial support given to make the whole Kaamatan celebration achievable and most certainly enjoyable,” Pairin said.