Kaamatan behind closed doors this year

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Kaamatan is usually celebrated in a grand manner in Sabah but with the Covid-19 pandemic, it will be held behind closed doors this year. (Bernama pic)

KOTA KINABALU: The Kaamatan, or Harvest Festival, on May 30 and 31, will be held behind closed doors this year in accordance with the health ministry’s strict SOPs.

Speaking to the media after chairing the Kaamatan main organising committee meeting here today, deputy chief minister Jeffrey Kitingan said the festival, which is set to kick off on May 1, will be held online as planned but the number of people allowed to physically attend events will be restricted.

He said the Sabah government has agreed that this year’s Kaamatan will go on, and celebrations will be held at the Hongkod Koisaan hall in Penampang, the traditional venue for the month-long celebrations.

“However, there will be no open house and attendance will be limited to 50 people or 30% of the venue capacity, whichever is lower,” he said, in a statement here today.

“In keeping with this year’s theme of ‘A Borderless Kaamatan for Peace and Reconciliation’, we will stick to our initial plan of holding the celebration online.”

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Kitingan said the Kaamatan celebrations at district levels will also adhere to the SOPs in terms of the number of people allowed to congregate.

Nonetheless, he said the public will not be left out because all programmes will be conducted online, and there will be many virtual events, including online games, in which they can participate.

All Kaamatan events will be broadcast live, online or shared through various channels such as RTM, Astro, Facebook, YouTube and other news outlets.

“I would like to invite the public to take part in the Kaamatan activities by tuning in to any of the channels,” he said.

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