KAJANG, Feb 17 — Datuk Seri Najib Razak became the first prime minister to have attended a Chinese New Year celebration organised today by the United Chinese School Committees Association of Malaysia (Dong Zong) since it was established 59 years ago.
Najib (picture) was received on arrival at 9.45am at the Dong Jiao Zong Higher Learning Centre, by Dong Zong chairman Dr Yap Sin Tian and several other representatives of the association.
Also present were Health Minister Datuk Seri Liow Tiong Lai, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Tan Sri Dr Koh Tsu Koon, MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek and Deputy Education Minister Datuk Dr Wee Ka Siong.
The prime minister took part in the “lao shang” and tried his hand at Chinese calligraphy, writing the words which meant celebrating the new year together.
The calligraphy session was also joined by Yap, Dong Zong deputy chairman Chow Siew Hon, United Chinese School Teachers Association (Jiao Zong) chairman Ong Chiow Chuen and Merdeka University Berhad chairman Foo Wan Thot.
Najib and the more than 5,000 guests then enjoyed the spread served while watching a cultural performance that included a lion dance, and Chinese music and traditional dances.
The crowd was excited with the prime minister’s presence and took the opportunity to shake hands with him as he was leaving the function at about 10.30am.
The celebration was organised in collaboration with Jiao Zong, Merdeka University Berhad, United Chinese Associations of Hulu Langat District, Dong Jioa Zong Higher Learning Centre, Chinese School Committee Association of the respective states and New Era College.
Chow when met by reporters said the prime minister’s presence was a good start towards enhancing further Chinese education in the country.
“The prime minister’s presence at our function shows his sincerity and we are delighted with his presence,” he said. — Bernama