- Wartawan Nabalu News
Borneo natives to fly barefoot in traditional attire for cultural festival
18 April 2023
By Wartawan Nabalu News
KOTA KINABALU: A group of 92 Borneo Dayak natives will make history by flying barefoot and wearing Sirat, a traditional loincloth, from Kuching to Kuala Lumpur on May 18.
The group, led by Peter John Jaban, aims to surpass their previous record of 60 people who donned traditional dress on an Air Asia plane in April last year.
“It was noted that the group is part of the Borneo Native Festival, a three-day event that will showcase the culture, heritage, and products of Sabah and Sarawak at the central market in Kuala Lumpur.
“The festival will kick off with a cultural parade on May 20, where about 150 participants from both states will march from Padang Merdeka to Pasar Seni in their ethnic costumes.
“The parade is expected to coincide with the Kaamatan and Gawai festivals, which celebrate the harvest season of the indigenous communities in Borneo,” said Jaban in a statement today.
Jaban said the goal of the visits is to raise awareness on Borneo indigenous heritage and the place of the community in modern Malaysian society.
The participants have bought their own tickets for the flight, but are still seeking sponsorship for accommodation in Kuala Lumpur. Jaban said his group intends to fly to New Zealand for a cultural exchange next year.
Several associations are involved in this program, which is combined in the GOASS Association of Sabah Natives of Sarawak.
These include the Persatuan Kesenian & Kebudayaan TAJAI, PERSIWAS, KEMADA Pampat Drum Association, Kuching and Persatuan Etnik Dayak Asal ,Sarawak & Sabah. Each of these is committed to the preservation and public awareness of Dayak culture and customs.