First of all, I would like to thank Mr. Steven Abas Anak Patrick Agus also known as Mimi Helmi for inviting me to be as one of the panel jury for the competition. I would like to also congratulate his Raban Ngepan Iban team for organising this event successfully on 8 April 2017 at Meritz Hotel, Miri, Sarawak.
Since 2013, I have been part of the judging team for Borneo Hornbill Festival in Kuala Lumpur and this is the first time that I was given a heavy responsibility as the Head Jury for the Kumang category for this year's Pekit Kumang/Keling Raban Ngepan Iban Peringkat Negeri Sarawak which is outside of my comfort zone. I was relieved to find that I would be judging something which I am familiar with but boy, I tell you it is way bigger than I expected. There were 10 panel of jury including me for the night. They came from various lines of experience and background; from master of Iban culture to the most junior of the Borneo Hornbill Festival alumni.
I was left in awe especially with the display of costumes by all the finalists that were only focus on the Iban ethnicity. Next, the evaluation of each finalist was as intense as it gets particularly on the question and answer session that focuses on the traditional Iban law and culture.
Miss Malaysia Pageant was responsible in doing the live coverage and till date the event (posted on Miss Malaysia Pageant Facebook Page) has 20k views, 1.4k "likes", "love" and 540 shares. The link to the "live" feed can be found at their FB page dated 8 April 2017.
I would like to share some of the photos taken during the competition for your viewing pleasure. Photos are credit to MMP and also Puan Diana Kidang.
|The panel jury for RNI 2017|
|Former RNI 2016 Queen Ms. Agnes Berangan Jilum|
|Head Jury for Keling Category, Mr. Edmond Rintai|
|Kumang, Ms Sherry Oliam|
|Keling RNI 2017, Mr Adriel Nyawai|
|Thank you RNI!|
4th Runner Up: Racheal Freddy Woodford (KAPIT)
3rd Runner Up: Viviana Jimbun (SRI AMAN)
2nd Runner Up: Roseda Ancha (MIRI)
1st Runner Up: Nisya Sukri (SARATOK)
Winner: Sherry Oliam (NIAH) :
4th Runner Up: Johanathan (BINTULU)
3rd Runner Up: Fabian William (KAPIT)
2nd Runner Up: Augusteen Dauglas (KANOWIT)
1st Runner Up: Ron Lloyd Albert Jingga (SARATOK)
Winner: Adriel Nyawai Robin (MIRI) :
I am quite sure in any competitions there will be some party who will not be satisfied with the result. Try to be in the panel of jury's shoes and choose the rightful winner; the person who meets the criteria of a Kumang and Keling to be the ambassadors of RNI and the future generation of the Iban community. "Kalah menang adat pertandingan, kalau gagal pada kali ini, jangan putus asa, cubalah sekali lagi".
In my opinion, culture based competition such as like this should be continued and promoted so as to educate the younger generation that our culture is precious and unique to others.
Finally, I would like to thank from the bottom of my heart to Mimi Helmi, Raban Ngepan Iban and also the new friends whom I met particularly the panel of jury...."Agi belala ka begulai enggau bala kita, betemu kitai baru ila". Majulah budaya majulah bansa...ooohhhaaaa....