Kota Marudu Member of Parliament

Kota Marudu Model For Ethnic Harmony And Unity In Diversity

MATUNGGONG (MAY 16): Kota Marudu is the most multiracial constituency in the country and the people of Kota Marudu have set an example for high level of ethnic harmony and unity in diversity, said Energy, Green Technology and Water Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Dr Maximus Ongkili.

The Kaamatan Festival in Matunggong in the Kota Marudu constituency colourfully reflects the cultural diversity

Dr Maximus, who is also Kota Marudu MP, said that in celebrating their diverse ethnicities and cultures  while living and interacting as one community, the people must ensure their respective traditions and heritage are preserved and passed down to the younger generation.

“This includes the ability to live together in peace and harmony which must be continued and appreciated by the younger and next generation to come. It is our responsibility to ensure that this spirit of unity continues to become our way of life in Kota Marudu,” he said on Thursday when launching the Kaamatan Festival celebration in the sub-district of Matunggong, which is one of two state seats in the parliamentary constituency. 

Matunggong is the area where the majority ethnic group is the Rungus. Dr Maximus said the Rungus community is among the most culturally unique people in the world with their colourful costumes, traditional dances, language, handicraft, food and songs.

“We must be proud of our culture and not let it die even as we accept modernity in our lives. Cultural heritage is an economic asset of the people. It needs to be exploited sustainably through tourism and commerce including through cottage industries that produce cultural and tourist products for all to appreciate,” he added.

However, he said, to fully develop the cultural and tourism sectors there must be cooperation between the people and the government.

“Ultimately, it is only our government that can provide basic infrastructure and bring economic development and transform the rural sector so that the people’s livelihood and progress can be uplifted,” he told the people.