Ling to propose Miri as host for Gawai Open House this year

Ling (6th left) and Baharin (7th left) given a rousing lion dance welcome at the Semarak Perpaduan KRT programme at Miri Senior Citizens Activity Centre.

MIRI: Pakatan Harapan Sarawak secretary Senator Alan Ling Sie Kiong will propose to Putrajaya for the Gawai Open House this year to be held in Miri.

The Gawai Open House is held yearly to strengthen integration between Peninsular Malaysia, Sabah and Sarawak.

He said he would bring this proposal to Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Senator P. Wartha Moorthy.

Ling disclosed this when representing the minister at the launching of Neighbourhood Watch Committee (KRT) unity programme at Miri Senior Citizens Activity Centre yesterday.

Previously, the Gawai Open House was held in Bintulu and Kuching.

He called on Malaysians of all races and religions to continue upholding solidarity and mutual respect for each other.

“The private sector can organise programmes beyond environmental issues to include unity as one of the elements in their social corporate responsibility programme,” he suggested.

On a separate matter, he urged the public to be more discerning and wary of news spread on social media.

“There are some quarters that are easily influenced by sensational news on social media without checking its veracity and truth, and this could make racial harmony more fragile,” he pointed out.

Ling said although the PH federal government provided space for the people to express their opinions it will not allow irresponsible quarters with vested agenda to spread falsehoods that would endanger unity and cause racial tension.

The senator said sophisticated gadgets and unlimited information which could be viralled or spread at a blink of the eye has led to some individuals spreading sensitive personal views or unacceptable ideology.

Earlier on, Datuk Baharin idris, director-general of Department of National Unity and Integration, in his speech remarked that Sarawak has an enviable spirit of unity among its people in terms of sharing, tolerance, mutual respect and appreciation.

“The sharing culture is the main strength of Sarawak as its people of various races and religions celebrate each other’s festivals,” he said.

Also present at the function were state Department of National Unity and Integration director Dirwana Azool, Miri Division unity officer Giri Nyareng, PH leaders in Miri and Baram and the local community.

Ling later gave away angpows to children and oranges to the guests in conjunction with the Chinese New Year.

The function also featured lion dance and cultural performances by different ethnic groups.

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