PENAMPANG, May 29 — The organisation of the Kaamatan Harvest Festival, not only in Sabah but also in Peninsular Malaysia, Labuan, and Sarawak, can tangibly translate the unity of the people at the national level.

Deputy Chief Minister I Datuk Seri Jeffrey Kitingan said that besides introducing local culture, the Kaamatan Festival also fosters a sense of belonging among various ethnic groups, particularly in Sabah.

“Unity becomes a reality through the Kaamatan Festival, and it also provides a sense of belonging,” he told a press conference after the briefing session for the Kaamatan Festival celebration at the Hongkod Koisaan Hall, Kadazandusun Cultural Association (KDCA) here today.

Jeffrey, who is also Kaamatan Festival Main Committee chairman, said the Kaamatan holiday allows Sabahans, especially the youths in Peninsular Malaysia, to return to their hometowns to celebrate the highlight of the festival, which will last for two days starting tomorrow.


The theme for this year’s Kaamatan Festival is “Kaamatan Beyond Food Security”, involving an expenditure of RM2.5 million.

Jeffrey said Sabah Yang Dipertua Negeri Tun Juhar Mahiruddin and Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor will launch the event tomorrow, while Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim is expected to close it the following day (May 31).

The highlight of the event, eagerly awaited every year, is the announcement of Unduk Ngadau.


This year, 51 Unduk Ngadau contestants from districts, towns, and branches of the KDCA, including six from Peninsular Malaysia and one each from Labuan and Sarawak, will compete in the final on Friday.

He also expressed his gratitude for the crucial role of the media in promoting activities in conjunction with the month-long festival, which was launched on May 1 in Ranau. — Bernama