Speech by Chief Minister of Penang, YAB Tuan Chow Kon Yeow
On The First Inaugural Penang Hill Festival 2018
21 JULY 2018
General Manager of Penang Hill Corporation
Mr. Cheok Lay Leng
Yang Berhormat, Penang State Exco Members
1. YB. Chong Eng
2. YB. Jagdeep Singh Deo A/L Karpal Singh
3. YB.Dr.Afif Bin Bahardin
4. YB. Yeoh Soon Hin
5. YB. Soon Lip Chee
Yang Berhormat , Members of the Penang State Legislative Assembly
Distinguished Head of Department from various government agencies
Members of Penang Hill Corporation BOD
Members of Penang Hill Corporation KPI Committee
Members of Penang Hill Corporation Establishment Committee
Members of the press,
Ladies & gentlemen,
Good morning ladies and gentlemen and welcome to the inaugural Penang Hill Festival 2018. Thank you to Penang Hill Corporation for inviting me to officiate this festival. As the chairman of Penang Hill Corporation It is an honour and a great pleasure to welcome all of you here. I would also like to take this opportunity to congratulate them for their hard work in organising this festival and bringing together government agencies, stakeholders, and communities of Penang Hill here on this lovely morning.
This festival is held to celebrate Penang Hill’s history, nature, and culture, and the events are thus centered towards its main theme. The festival’s success is a vital reflection upon the conservation and preservation efforts of the different heritages in Penang that makes this state unique. Penang Hill is a wonderful mixture of a long and glorious history dating back to the British colonial times as far back in 1788, a natural rainforest that is 130-million years old, and a rich cultural heritage of the people who have lived here with stories to tell, aligning with Penang Hill Festival theme’s “See the nature. Feel the history”
With a plethora of flora and fauna, some events like the “Rainforest Discovery Walk & Talk” or the “Night Exploration” are designed to show visitors Penang Hill’s natural habitat while others are an introduction to the conservation efforts of Penang Hill. Guests are invited to conduct some of the highly anticipated events. I believe these events are important towards educating the public on nature conservation and climate change that has been happening across the globe lately. It is crucial that we understand the importance to preserve and conserve the environment as it is so that our children can enjoy it in the future. Penang Hill is an exemplar in environmental conservation, and events like these will show others how conservation and sustainability can be achieved.
A society’s culture is a strong factor of its identity. Penang is a state rich in historical heritage, and Penang Hill is unique in this respect that combines natural, historical, and cultural heritage together. Historical preservation is important as it serves to remind us of our past that makes up a large part of our identity today. The first buildings on the hill were built in the late 1700s and early 1800s and some have its story to tell. “History and Heritage of Penang Hill Talk” and “Walk Down Memory Lane” are two events that concern the rich cultural heritage of our beloved hill. Therefore, I heartily welcome the opportunity for local and international visitors alike to discover and understand more of Penang Hill’s past and its relation to the present.
Penang is a breeding ground for aspiring artisans and craftsmen to showcase their talents in the city, and Penang Hill is no exception. Artists and cartoonists are welcomed before on the hill to draw caricatures of people and beautiful sceneries. Thus, this festival also includes symphonies and orchestras scheduled in to show Penang’s artistic side and its encouragement towards the arts. With the inclusion of Penang based Musica Sinfonietta orchestra and other musical performances throughout the festival, it is a rare side of Penang Hill that visitors will have the opportunity to enjoy music in the midst of green foliage. It will certainly be a unique experience. One of the main events ought to be the Music on the Hill - East Meets West, a unique performance of local and traditional music instruments, followed by symphony orchestra. We are indeed honoured to have a special guest performance by Mr. Willmond Tam, an accomplished musician from Hong Kong, who happens to retire in Penang. July 28th evening will be the highlight of the first ever music performance by traditional and symphony orchestra on the hill.
Ladies and gentlemen,
I would like to sincerely thank all of you for taking the time to join us for this festival. I hope festivals like this will continue to be conducted to build strong relationships between communities and promote conservation efforts to protect our beloved hill and its environment Penang Hill remains an exemplar to maintain its natural habitat and protect the 130-million years old rainforest. Finally, thank you and please enjoy yourselves with the events planned for the first official Penang Hill Festival 2018!