KOTA KINABALU: Wedding bells rang repeatedly yesterday as 117 couples in Sabah joined tens of thousands of lovebirds around the world to tie the knot on the rare auspicious date – 11.11.11, which comes only once every 100 years.
National Registration Department Director Ismail Ahmad said 30 of the couples who registered their marriages yesterday were from Kota Kinabalu, followed by 14 from Penampang, including two couples from the department.
The auspicious event started at 11am in line with the popular date that has sparked a lot of interest.
Meanwhile, the department in Papar recorded 13 marriages yesterday while Ranau and Sandakan each registered 12 weddings, followed by 10 in Kuala Penyu, seven in Tawau and six in Tuaran. Five couples were registered in Lahad Datu, with two each in Beaufort and Tenom. Kota Belud had a pair.
According to Ismail, the couples who attended the registration ceremony yesterday signed up as early as three months ago, while others did so a few weeks ago.
In Kota Kinabalu, couples were presented with their certificates while a photography session complete with cakes and decorated arches on stage was conducted.
“This is the first of its kind in the state and I am very encouraged by the response. The number of marriages registered this month is very encouraging and we hope to carry this on as a tradition next year, said Ismail.
“We are targeting 200 couples for the Kota Kinabalu area,” he said, adding that the next date to watch out for would be 12.12.12, or 12 Dec 2012.
Ismail, who believes the dates are merely unique without any significance attached, nevertheless encouraged those who wish to tie the knot at the end of next year to register themselves with the department early.
The department also treated the newly registered couples, families, friends and relatives to a lunch.