Keep CNY traditional values, spirit alive

Lee (third left) offers a happy Chinese New Year 2021 greeting after an interview at RTM Miri.

MIRI: Minister of Transport Datuk Lee Kim Shin reminds the Chinese community to continue adhering to the standard operating procedures (SOPs) while celebrating the lunar New Year.

“2020 was a very challenging and unpredictable year for everyone. Due to Covid-19 pandemic, this Chinese New Year will be different from previous years,” he said in his CNY message over Radio Television Malaysia (RTM) Miri today.

He said the SOPs do not allow any open house during the festive season including door-to-door visiting, lion and dragon dance performances.

There shall be no dine-in at hotels or restaurants for reunion dinners, no celebration or worshipping at temples or public places and no New Year Bazaar at open spaces, hotels and shopping malls.

Only on Chinese New Year Eve and first day of CNY, a reunion dinner and small celebration at home is allowed where the number is limited to only 20 close family members.

Coupled with the reduction of flights due to movement control order (MCO) and the closure of checkpoints in many countries, those who study or live abroad cannot return to their hometowns to celebrate the annual festival with their families this year.

In view of the SOPs, Chinese New Year this year has to be celebrated under a new normal.

“However, this should not deter us from keeping the CNY spirit alive, we can resort to technology to celebrate CNY using the virtual platform,” he pointed out.

The Chinese must not forget the traditional values of CNY, for example showing their love, respect and gratitude to their parents and elders, Lee said.

“Although many may not be able to return to have reunion dinners with them (parents), they must not forget to call them, better still video call them, greet them and convey their best wishes and chit chat with them.

“Do not forget that you can send your angpows to their bank accounts or e-wallets. Keep our family bonding and values alive. Do not forget our family roots,” he reminded.

He also advised them not to forget the brave frontliners who worked tirelessly to curb the Covid-19 pandemic.

Their dedication, sacrifices and commitment to fight Covid-19 deserved recognition as heroes. Thank you so much for your noble services, he said.

“Following our government’s recent announcement of carrying out Covid-19 vaccination soon, I sincerely hope and pray that Covid-19 pandemic will be over towards the end of this year and we will return to our normal way of life. We hope to be able to celebrate CNY in the traditional normal way in 2022,” he added.