This is Sabah’s Chief Minister Datuk Shafie Apdal’s Chinese New Year message.
My greetings to everyone celebrating the Chinese New Year in Sabah and Malaysia as you and your loved ones gather to usher in the start of the Lunar calendar.
The Chinese New Year celebration has become an integral part of cultural festivities in Sabah because the Chinese community is inextricably woven into the colourful tapestry that makes up the fabric of our harmonious society today. They remind us that our strength as Sabahans lies in accepting each other into our communities and embracing cultural and ethnic diversity. This strong relationship with people of diverse cultures and backgrounds is what makes us unique and united.
The new Warisan-led government of Sabah is therefore proud to join in the Chinese New Year celebration because it makes our history and heritage richer, strengthens the bond that holds our diverse nation together and manifests the peace and harmony that is the mainstay of the Sabahan society.
On this festive occasion, I wish to invite all those celebrating the Chinese New Year to reflect upon the common greeting of ‘Gong Xi Fa Cai’ to broaden its scope of good wishes a little further. I understand that it means to congratulate one another for attaining greater wealth but it can have a much wider connotation and meaning.
As Chief Minister of Sabah, my wish is for the State to be prosperous and to become one of the most progressive states in the Federation of Malaysia.
When we look with admiration at the Chinese or any other community for having achieved greater wealth and prosperity, let us remember that they are not at that state of good fortune by chance but rather, through a lot of sweat and toil.
Likewise, for us in Sabah, we have to set our targets high and have the right mindset and plans to achieve them. And in order to achieve these targets and to gain real prosperity, we must work hard together even if it means having to face formidable challenges or even failures along the way.
I call on all Malaysians in Sabah to join me and the State Government to work together relentlessly in attaining greater wealth for our beloved Sabah.
Gong Xi Fa Cai!-pr/BNN