NgekTsai, a popular Sarawakian influencer, has been gracing the scene with the various characters he plays. A versatile entertainer, his videos are never short on advice and knowledge sharing, while he continues to spread laughter through life experiences stories that many can relate to.
Life lessons and humour
Being a social media influencer can be tough. Though what is often shown is all shiny and glitter, the reality behind the scenes is quite the opposite. A popular Sarawakian influencer, NgekTsai, shared his story, saying that there were moments when it wasn’t always easy being recognised.
“I cried a lot, but I learned to deal with it. I chose this life and have no regrets whatsoever.”
Being known by many people from various walks of life, and being an influencer these days is akin to being a celebrity. He admits that there is no privacy when he is outside.
“I often have a lot of people approaching me, engaging in conversation with me, telling me about themselves, and taking photos with me. I do more than just go outside. But since I made this life my choice, I cannot go back.”
When he decided to become NgekTsai in 2016, he was aware that he would have to give up his private life.
“It was a turning point for me when I declared myself as NgekTsai. I had the option of doing this or forgetting about it. Nevertheless, I made the decision to proceed after much deliberation with my family and friends. But in doing so, I had to give up some things, such as my privacy.”
Thus, the comedian influencer continues to share life experiences through hilarious skits on his Facebook page and YouTube channel. NgekTsai, who has been creating content since 2016, said in an interview with New Sarawak Tribune that he initially did it for fun.
“My friend challenged me to make a video to mock our other friend. So I made a 15-second video and posted it on social media. Everyone laughed, but what surprised me more was how quickly it went viral,” the 37-year-old said.
NgekTsai currently has more than 400,000 and 90,000 followers on Facebook and YouTube, respectively. NgekTsai is still actively posting funny videos and uploads three videos per month on average.
NgekTsai, who plays more than 10 characters, does not discriminate against gender or age. He can play both men and women, as well as boys and girls. He can also play the role of a young person who is clueless about the outside world or an old man who is rambling on about life. Many anticipated his ability to distinguish each character while bringing out the best in them, while merging charisma and good acting skills.
The most well-known of the various characters he portrays is Monyeng, a secondary school student. Monyeng, who is funny, innocent, and kind-hearted, is the people’s favourite because of her curiosity and wit.
When asked if he was frowned upon for playing a female character so well, NgekTsai said he is often asked if he is a “pondan” (transgender).
“When asked, I always answer that I am a girl and not a ‘pondan.’ I usually respond to comments like this with mockery.”
He believes he is unable to answer the questions.
“I can be anyone I want to be. In your imagination, I can be anyone you want me to be. If you want me to be a girl, go ahead. If you want me to be a ‘pondan’, go ahead. If you want me to be a man, go ahead,” he said.
As an influencer, he often received hurtful comments. Despite this, NgekTsai said that he is not offended.
“I was mature enough to not allow these comments upset me when I chose to be NgekTsai at 31 years old.”
But is it possible to work as an influencer full-time? NgekTsai gave a resounding no. He went on to say that having a job as an influencer is not a lifetime guarantee.
“I won’t give up my full-time job to concentrate on being an influencer. I work in the medical field during the day. I love my job there. It’s been my passion since I was young. As for NgekTsai, whatever videos I make are based on my own experiences, and I do it as a hobby.”
His job as a pathology medical laboratory technologist keeps him occupied when he isn’t NgekTsai. His weekly schedule consists of doing his full-time job during the weekdays, while NgekTsai only appears on weekends.
“NgekTsai is not available from Monday to Friday. He only comes out on Saturdays and Sundays. That is when I will film a few videos for the month.”
Despite having a busy schedule, he has no plans to retire anytime soon. With local businesses in mind, NgekTsai said that he hopes to share more about Sarawak businesses through his platform.
“We can be as good as the West Malaysians. Sarawak’s business has the potential to grow further, and I can assist them by providing exposure. I believe Sarawakians have a chance to develop because of their extraordinary products.”
Along with his mission to bring out the best in every Sarawakian, NgekTsai also gives advice to young people about potential mistakes they might do in the future through his videos.
“Just as I did in the past. I’ve made mistakes in the past, and I was wrong. But the mistakes were my choices at the time. However, I hope that through my videos, young people will understand that they have the ability to make wise decisions.”
The Sarawak anti-drug icon hoped that by giving advise such as ‘do not talk to strangers’ or ‘do not do drugs,’ his viewers would reflect on their own decisions.
“You may have seen my videos and thought how funny they are. But consider what NgekTsai is attempting to convey. Despite my mistakes, I consider myself fortunate to be where I am now. Many people who make mistakes in life end up failing. I don’t want to see that happen.”
Despite his busy schedule, NgekTsai still produces quality content. His mind will be exploring different ideas to entertain his followers while he walks the streets or works.
“As soon as I got an idea, I would quickly note it down on my phone. You can then watch it on my “NgekTsai Army” YouTube channel and Facebook page.”