Multiculturalism an asset for our nation, says Chong Eng


MUTUAL understanding and respect enable a multicultural nation to live in harmony, says state executive councillor for Non-Islamic Religious Affairs and Social Development Chong Eng.


She said this during her speech at the Chinese New Year gathering held on Feb 6 at the Penang Harmony Centre.


It was jointly organised by the Malaysian Chinese Muslim Association Penang branch, Penang Harmony Corporation (Harmonico) and Penang Islamic Religious Affairs Department.


“This event, which is organised by the non-Muslim community and the Muslim community, conveys a message that to live in harmony it starts from mutual understanding and respect with each other.


“The CNY is not a religious celebration, but it is more of a tradition of the Chinese community.


“Therefore, whether they are Christians, Buddhists, Taoists, Muslims or are of other faith, the Chinese community will celebrate the CNY because it is part of their culture,” said Chong Eng during
her speech at the event.

Visitors interacting with the lion dance performers

Chong Eng said the diverse religion, race and religion that exist in Malaysia, especially in Penang, are our asset.


“Moreover, it is a privilege to have initiatives undertaken by the various associations and non-governmental organisations in Penang to promote harmony in the state.


“As such, I am proud that programmes such as this are being held at the Penang Harmony Centre.


“In fact, this was the reason for us to develop this place as well as the establishment of Harmonico,” she added.


Meanwhile, Deputy Chief Minister I Datuk Ahmad Zakiyuddin Abdul Rahman, who was also present, said it is important for us to live as a family.

(fourth from left) Chong Eng and Ahmad Zakiyuddin taking part in the ‘yee sang’ tossing activity ceremony


“The CNY focuses on coming together as a family to celebrate the festivity. Similarly, let us all also stay together as a family and celebrate our multiculturism,” he added.


Story by Tanushalini Moroter
Pix by Tan Kean Ming