KOTA KINABALU: The delegates of the 23rd Conference of Speakers and Presiding Officers of the Commonwealth (CSPOC) who spent few hours at the Mari-Mari Cultural Village, a tourist destination about 15km from here today were impressed with the various Sabah ethnic culture and traditions.
During the pre-conference tour to the cultural village, the delegates, were among others, showcased with various traditional dances like ‘magunatip’ dance of the Murut as well as dance from the Lundayeh.
Some of the delegates also took part in the dance as well as tested their skill in the use of traditional hunting equipment previously used by Sabah ethnic groups like blow pipe.
Some of the delegates also spent their time visiting traditional house of the Bajau, Murut, Rungus, Dusun and Lundayeh which were built in the village.
Delegates were aslo served with traditional food like ‘bambangan’ as well as well as various types of ‘ulam’.
“This is my first time to Sabah, Malaysia. It is wonderful. People are very friendly. The food is very good,” said Dr Kendal Major, the Speaker of Parliament of Bahamas.
Kendal said there were some similarities between Sabah and Bahamas when it came to the tourism industry because his country’s gross domestic product (GDP) also depended on tourism industry like Sabah.
“The food here quite different…but I like it,” he said.
On the traditional performance, Kendal said the performance was quite similiar to the indigenous people cultural performance called ‘Junkamoo’ back home in Bahamas in terms of musical rhythm, dance steps and the musical
He said his country had many islands and most of the indigenous people in his country used many music instruments made of various things like metal and steel minus bamboo.
Kendal said he appreciated the native people and the importance of the aborigine to be part of a country’s development.
“I want to see that (the tradition) because this is the real life in Malaysia. I want to see how the people live and how they socialise,” Kendal added.
Sharing Kendal’s experience, Catherine Hoyle, the wife of Deputy Speaker of the United Kingdom Parliament, Lindsay Hoyle, said the traditional performance was excellent.
“Everyone seems to be proud to see the traditional (performance), to get people very impressive. This is my first visit to Malaysia,” she said.
She also said that there was nothing to worry about coming to Malaysia as she knew this country well.-BERNAMA