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Pairin very happy with alumni’s recognition of Kaamatan Festival
Published on: Sunday, June 09, 2024
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Pairin (right) and Ram.
DE: How would you sum up the La Salle Kaamatan festival? 

Pairin: Today, I am very happy to be here, because I didn’t know they have harvest festival in La Salle Alumni association. Today I have been invited so I came and I enjoyed myself, thank you very much.

DE: How would you sum up the meaning of Kaamatan? 

Pairin: Kaamatan has been very good for Sabah because it has brought the people together, it has brought more understanding and more friendship and more unity. 

This is very important because we all want to be one together to fight for Sabah, this is important for the future of Sabah, this is one that should be in the mind of our local people, wherever they are from, whatever kampong they are from, we must be one together. 

DE: How important is Kaamatan for the KadazanDusun community? 

Pairin: It is important for everybody not just for the KadazanDusun. Of course, we also want to be uplifted just like any other group so we need to be assisted also, so we want to help one another and we should be helping each other, right? God helps those who help themselves, so we must be working together.      

Earlier in his speech, Pairin traced how he ended up in La Salle from Day One.    

“I count it a great honour and privilege to be here today, I am one of the old boys from the 1958/ 1959 class, at that time, Bro Charles of course and Bro Raphael were still around and very much in control.”

“And we know the way Bro Charles was like, when he gets angry, his face became red and his hair also became red (laughters),” he quipped.

‘I needed the Brothers’ discipline’ 

“But I would like to say that because the La Salle Brothers were set to take over Sacred Heart Secondary School and running it, I was in Sandakan doing Form 3 where I managed to get through and based on what some people said, I was given the understanding that if the school was going to be taken over by the La Salle Brothers, those who needed to be disciplined would be pressurised to work hard, so they said it’s better go to La Salle so that we would get though Cambridge examination. 

“So I told myself I needed to be disciplined, I needed to be prodded to work to get through the Senior Cambridge examination, so I decided together with some other friends to come to La Salle in 1958,” said Pairin. 

“I remember all the hard pressure from the late Bro Charles and also the late Bro Raphael who made sure students were disciplined but the approach was different, Raphael used psychology, he did not use the duster throwing technique, so by way school discipline and encouragement from other friends, I was able to get through my Senior Cambridge with a Grade One. 

“So, I am happy and thank Almighty God and thank La Salle Brothers that I was able to get through my Senior Cambridge. After that, I went to Sabah College, you know the rest of the story,” said Pairin who was looking around if there were any other ex-Class ’58 around but Huguan Siao (the Brave One) found none!

Noticing the presence of who’s who

“But I like to really say thank you to everyone, I would like to particularly salute our Association of ex-students of La Salle and Sacred Heart Patron, in the person of Bro Justin Mobilik for being here, and, of course to Datuk Ram Singh who is President of the Association now and committee, including the singer (Sammy Ariffin Khan), of course the presence of Tan Sri Simon Sipaun, my senior, who went ahead to New Zealand to get his degree, Datuk Clement Jaikul, Datuk Zainie Aucasa. 

“But here we have the school principal of La Salle, Mr Vijaya Kumar, Ms Wong Ling Ching the headmistress of SRK Sacred Heart, Mr Ho Kin Wong, Chairman of the Board of Governors of La Salle school cum ex-President, PTA Chairman. Mr Andre Norbert Lee, Mr Bahrul Razha Chuprat, General Manager of Safoda, KK Sharks and Rugby & Football Team headed by Mohd Ismail Khan, Justice Datuk Duncan Sikodol, lawyer Robert Munang, thank you for being with us.”                          

‘Commendable job’: Board 

Chairman Ho


“Alumni under President Datuk Ram Singh are doing a commendable job,” said Chairman of SM La Salle Board of Governors, Ho Kin Wong. 

“Occasions like the Kaamatan celebration help to bring alumni together because many of us don’t meet in their daily lives, so their relationships drift further and further away.” 

“Meetings and gatherings help to renew friendship, fostering camaraderie and unity in heart and spirit, whereby strength could be drawn upon to further the cause of Lasallian education.”    



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