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Many Sabahans prefer reunion dinner during CNY open house and not on the eve
Published on: Saturday, February 10, 2024
By: Bernama
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Many Sabahans prefer reunion dinner during CNY open house and not on the eve
For illustrative purposes only. - Bernama filepic
KOTA KINABALU: The reunion dinner held on the eve of Chinese New Year (Friday) is considered the most important family dinner among the Chinese community and families feast on a variety of dishes specially prepared by family members.

However, the tradition practised in Sabah slightly differs from the norm as some communities choose to have the reunion dinner during their open house today and not on the eve.

 Those who practice the tradition of having their reunion dinner together with their open house, claim that though the tradition is important, having the reunion dinner during the open house would enable the family to prepare a bigger feast which allows more family members to be present and enjoy the festivity.

Geofery Lojikim, 71, a Sino-Kadazan said the decision to not have the reunion dinner on the eve of Chinese New was to enable family members to gather and help out in the preparation to usher the new year in their family house at Kampung Lapasan.

“We will designate duties for the men and women. The men will do the preparations for the feast while the women will decorate the house and carry out other chores,” he told Bernama when met at his residence here on Friday.

Another family head who made a similar decision was Sun Tet Lin, 61, who said his wife Tasilah Selipat, 54, and their children did not have a reunion dinner on Friday but have decided to have the traditional feast today.

He added that one other fact was that many of the family members are involved in mixed marriages, thus the decision to not have the reunion dinner according to tradition.

“We do eat together but is not a reunion dinner because the meaning of a reunion dinner is that everyone in the family must be present during the reunion dinner,” he said.

As we all know, luck, prosperity and auspiciousness are very important in Chinese culture, especially during this festive and significant time of the year.

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