Sabah govt will continue to support Chinese culture, says Hajiji

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah looks forward to hosting the 38th National Chinese Cultural Festival in September.

Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor said that the state welcomed the initiative by the Federation of Chinese Associations Sabah (FCAS) to bring the festival to Sabah.

“The state government welcomes FCAS’ initiative. I hope this festival will promote and foster a greater understanding of the various colourful Chinese cultures,” he said.

Speaking at the opening of the 2023 Chinese New Year carnival at Lintasan Deasoka here, Hajiji said the state government will continue to support Chinese cultural activities in Sabah.

His speech was delivered by Deputy Chief Minister I and state Agriculture and Fisheries Minister Datuk Seri Dr Jeffrey Kitingan.

“Sabah is a diversified multi-racial, multi-religious and multi-cultural community where tolerance and acceptance of each others’ heritage have prevailed. The government encourages and supports this,” the Chief Minister said.

He said the government will also ensure the rakyat gets equal development, including allocations for the vernacular and mission schools as well as non-Muslim religious bodies in the state.

The state government, he said, has done its best to develop the state under the Hala Tuju Sabah Maju Jaya development blueprint and at the end of 2022, the Sabah government had collected more than RM6.6bil in revenue.

“This is not only the best performance of a Sabah state government ever since the formation of Malaysia in 1963 but also proof of the present state government’s determination and ability to develop Sabah,” he said.

Hajiji added that the Sabah government would continue to implement sound policies in order to bring in more investments going forward.

Putrajaya’s nod to hand over regulatory power of the gas supply to the state government on Dec 21, 2022, marked a positive beginning, he said.

Earlier this week, Hajiji tabled the Sabah Energy Commission 2023 Bill and Gas Supply 2023 Bill, which was passed unanimously during the special state assembly sitting.

“In this respect, I hope the Chinese community, a majority of whom are in business, will work together with the government to develop the state.

“I am confident that with support from all the rakyat, particularly the Chinese community, each step taken by the government will progressively move Sabah in the right direction,” he said.