No ‘balik kampung’ is the new normal

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KUCHING: Movement restriction is the new norm and the people of Sarawak have no other choice but to swallow that fact — especially the inability to celebrate Gawai with their loved ones in kampungs.

Tellian assemblyman Yussibnosh Balo said as the people celebrate Gawai in the form of the new normal scenario following Covid-19 pandemic, they will be reminded on the importance of their freedom and healthcare.

“As of now, festive celebrations are also affected including this coming Hari Gawai Dayak on June 1.

“Many people could not balik kampung (return to hometowns) to meet and dine with their families and relatives.

“This includes those families in Malaya, Brunei and Sabah, who are unable to balik kampung and had no other choice but to celebrate Gawai with family members or relatives who are stuck in the same area,” he said in his Gawai message to Sarawakians when contacted by New Sarawak Tribune today.

He further said such circumstances are the new challenges for the people to think about how their movements are restricted due to surrounding conditions.

“So is our reminder to Gawai Dayak that was once influenced by the ‘rice spirit’ as our food source.

“My wife’s grandfather reminded us to celebrate Gawai when the moon appears as a full moon. The elderlies would not celebrate Gawai when the moon starts to wane (becoming smaller).

“Let us pray for the Covid-19 crisis to end similar to that when the full moon starts waning and slowly stop shining its light to the Earth,” he said.

Yussibnosh further wished all families and friends throughout Sarawak Selamat Hari Gawai Dayak, Gayu guru gerai nyamai.

“May the celebration strengthen the ties among the multiracial society despite still being under the conditional movement control order (CMCO),” he continued.

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