Monday, June 11, 2012

Ulu Papar Talk at Muzium Sabah

Heritage Sabah attended the Ulu Papar Cultural Heritage Sites Talk this morning at Muzium Sabah, Kota Kinabalu. The talk was organized by the Community Researchers of Ulu Papar under the coordination of Global Diversity Foundation and was attended by various Sabah NGOs groups such as Heritage Sabah, North Borneo History Enthusiasts (NBHE) and Borneo Youth Revolution.

It was a very interesting talk divided into sections – Kakakapan Id Gayo Ngaran (Pilgrimage to the Sacred Mountain) presented by Remmy Alfie – and Ulu Papar Historical Sites presented by Jenny Sanem and Raymond Simpanis.

‘Kakapan Id Gayo Ngaran’ discusses the Sabah Park’s initiative to allow the indigenous villagers of Bundu Tuhan a chance to reconnect with their spiritual mountain after decades of being denied entry when Mt. Kinabalu was gazetted in 1964.

Re-instated was the Monolob Ceremony – which was traditionally performed before climbing to gain blessings from the spirits and ancestors who were believed to have come home to rest on the sacred mountain.

‘Ulu Papar Historical Sites’ explained to the invited guests about the indigenous community of Ulu Papar, the culture and livelihood of the Ulu Papar folks. We learnt many new things, for instance, the existence of a female leader known as Gayatas who lead an army of female warriors in the area of Ulu Papar.

It gave the invited guests insight to the lives of the Ulu Papar village folk, their cultural heritage – and how they would lose everything, their heritage and future if the proposed Kaiduan Dam were to became a reality. Hundreds of acres of ancestral land and burial grounds would be destroyed.

Heritage Sabah and the other NGOs have pledged to help the Ulu Papar community to raise public awareness about their plight. As a token of thanks, the Community Researchers gave the Director and staff of Muzium Sabah the gift of their hill rice as a token of appreciation, as did the invited guests NGOs.

Pn. Joanna later took the guests and speakers to view Muzium Sabah’s new galleries.

The day ended with Director of Muzium Sabah, Pn. Joanna Kitingan taking both the community researchers and guests for lunch at the Muzium’s canteen.

Heritage Sabah would like to thank the Community Researchers & Coordinators and Muzium Sabah for inviting our participation to this event.


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