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Kalimaran Fest finally fixed for every March 31

KOTA KINABALU: Pesta Kalimaran of the Muruts will be included in the Sabah calendar with the date fixed on March 31, instead of being celebrated on different dates without consistency. The festival’s Main Committee Organising Chairman Datuk Peter Anthony said it is timely for such recognition. “We found that since the Murut festival was organised in 2003, it has not been managed in a consistent manner where there is no fixed date to celebrate the festival. In the past, it was celebrated in April, or March and even in October. “The present State government is serious in upholding the dignity of all races and their respective celebrations by giving full commitment in the conservation aspect of cultural art and traditions.

“This has been done with Pesta Kaamatan or Harvest Festival, Hari Raya celebration and Chinese New Year, thus, we need also to empower Pesta Kalimaran to respect the Murut ethnic group in Sabah and giving due recognition of the festival to be celebrated every March 31,” he said. Speaking after chairing the Pesta Kalimaran main committee meeting at JKR headquarters here, Peter who is also the Infrastructure Minister said the 16th celebration of the festival would begin on March 26 until March 31 at the Tenom Murut Cultural Centre.  He said Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal would officiate the closing ceremony on March 31 at 1pm while the opening would be officiated by himself on March 26 at 2.30pm. “The six-day Pesta Kalimatan celebration would be joined and participated by 10 sub-ethnic Murut in various activities planned for the festival.

“This festival would be celebrated in a moderate manner due to State’s funding constraints. “However, it is expected to attract about 10,000 visitors, including luring tourists to go to the interior part of Sabah in Tenom. “I have asked the management committee to take out several sport events that are seen as not suitable and focus on events and activities that reflect Murut culture and tradition,” he said. Peter who is also Melalap Assemblyman, advised visitors who wish to stay several days for the Pesta Kalimaran in Tenom to make early reservations.

For more information on accommodation, they can contact the secretariat at Sabah Cultural Board at 088-258762.

Source: Daily Express | Mar 3, 2019