KUCHING: Welfare, Community Wellbeing, Women, Family and Childhood Development Minister Datuk Seri Fatimah Abdullah believed that mixed marriages play a pivotal part in fostering unity in the state.

She said that being exposed to two different sets of culture and background forms a firm mutual understanding between the community in Sarawak.

Fatimah fields questions from reporters during the Sarawak United People's Party (SUPP) Chinese New Year open house.

“I am one of the hybrids, my father is Chinese and my mother is Melanau, for us, we feel lucky that we get to understand and inherit the culture of both Chinese and Melanau.

“This is good in our community which encompasses of various race and religions and most probably the factor of our close understanding and unity that we enjoyed,” she said when met during the Sarawak United People's Party (SUPP) Chinese New Year open house at its headquarters building here on Saturday.

Fatimah added that through the understanding gathered by Sarawakians, it is also a good foundation to preserve unity regardless of race and religion.

Assistant Minister in the Chief Minister's Department (Islamic Affairs and DBKU) Datuk Dr Abdul Rahman Junaidi echoed Fatimah's views and said that tolerance between Sarawak's communities are the main contributor for the people to live in harmony.

“This is because the unity among the people is very solid be it the Chinese, Iban, Malay, Bidayuh, Melanau and Orang Ulu, this is what we enjoy in Sarawak and it has been the culture since we are young.

Dr Abdul Rahman Junaidi

“When we are adults, the unity is still preserved as we were in school with people of various racial and religious backgrounds,” he said when met at the same function at the time.

Dr Abdul Rahman said that for him personally, his schooling years were spent at Chinese kindergarten and schools. He believed that such is a good starting point for unity which has been formed well in Sarawak.

>Sources: New Sarawak Tribune