A celebration of Sarawak’s diversity

Taib (centre left) takes a salute as Ragad (centre right) looks on. Photo: JaPen

KUCHING: The 84th birthday celebrations of Head of State Tun Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud took off with great fanfare at the State Legislative Assembly (DUN) compound this morning.

Taib and wife Toh Puan Datuk Patinggi Ragad Kurdi Taib were welcomed by Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg, Local Government and Housing Minister Datuk Seri Dr Sim Kui Hian, State Secretary Datuk Amar Jaul Samion, and Army Eastern Field commander Lieutenant-General Datuk Mohd Zakaria Yadi.

The governor’s arrival was marked with cannon fire and a fly-past by four helicopters. Upon the main stage, he took the salute, and this was followed by the singing of the state anthem ― Ibu Pertiwiku.

Taib then inspected a guard of honour mounted by 103 members of various ranks and three officers from the 13th Battalion Royal Malay Regiment led by Major Mohd Safiq Jamaluddin.

A prayer was recited by State Imam Besar Datuk Mustapha Kamal Ahmad Fauzi.

One of the vibrant dance performances in conjunction with the birthday celebration. Photo: JaPen

Among the activities included a cultural dance performance entitled ‘Wonderful Sarawak’ by the Sarawak Cultural Village troupe and also a contemporary dance performance themed ‘A Celebration’ by The Dance Academy.

The cultural dance was a vibrant display of Sarawak’s unique and diverse ethnicities which live together in harmony.

During the performance, a huge birthday cake was brought out to commemorate the auspicious event while contemporary dancers performed for attendees.

The dance performances concluded with the birthday song and ‘happy birthday’ wishes in various languages to the Head of State.

In light of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, the celebration was held following the standard operating procedures (SOP) set to curb the spread of Covid-19.

Despite this, it was indeed a joyous and colourful occasion with symbolic procedures and invigorating performances.

Also present were the chief minister’s wife Datuk Amar Juma’ani Tun Tuanku Bujang, Deputy Chief Ministers Datuk Amar Douglas Uggah Embas, Tan Sri Datuk Amar Dr James Jemut Masing and Datuk Amar Awang Tengah Ali Hasan, DUN Speaker Datuk Amar Mohd Asfia Awang Nassar, state ministers and assistant ministers and other dignitaries.

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