First historical centre in state to be built atop Bung Bratak


TRADITIONAL CEREMONY: (Seated from left) Daniel and Minos watching the ‘Pisien’ ceremony from the main stage. — Photo by Chimon Upon

CROWD PULLER: Bung Bratak Festival never fails to attract visitors although they had to climb up a 1,000-step foothill to reach the venue for the celebration.

DANCING TO THE RHYTHM: Minos (seventh right) and Daniel joining the maidens in a traditional dance.

SHOWCASE: The Jagoi-Bratak girls performing their traditional dance.

BAU: The first historical centre in the state comprising two longhouse-like structures and other facilities for visitors will be built on top of Bung Bratak.

This is made possible with the approved allocation of RM8 million from the Ministry of Information, Communication and Culture, said Bung Bratak Heritage Association chairman Dato Peter Minos.

At the Bung Bratak Festival held atop Bratak Mountain, Kampung Tembawang Sauh in Bau yesterday, he elaborated that one longhouse is capable of housing 100 persons at any one time while the other will be used as a cultural centre with facilities like a conference room, a canteen and museum.

The construction will commence after the Gawai celebration this year.

One of the longhouses will be named Pandelela Rinong Longhouse, after national diver Pandelela who had done the Bidayuh community proud.

“Pandelela Rinong is a Bidayuh whose heritage can be traced to Bung Bratak and she is our Bidayuh heroine.

“She is the inspiration to us Bidayuhs and we should try to follow in her footsteps and emulate her success,” Minos said.

He said the Bidayuhs should be grateful to the government for making the project possible and urged them to continue to support the government.

“Even two days ago, Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Alfred Jabu advised the Bidayuhs to be united, acting as one so they can continue to enjoy development.”

“Because together we stand, united we fall,” he stated.

The festival was held to remember and honour the historical and cultural heritage of the Jagoi-Bratak (Bidayuh) group.

Bung Bratak is where the first Bidayuhs settled over 750 years ago.

At the festival, visitors were treated to traditional dances by villagers from Kampung Suba Buan,
Kampung Jugan and Kampung Tembawang Sauh as well as customary rites of the Bidayuhs.

Pemanca Daniel Tiho and Penghulu Gani Jonek were also present.