Squid Spectacle: Pesta Suntong Bako Shines Light on Sarawak’s Unique Fishing Culture

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First Pesta Suntong Bako highlights Sarawak’s unique squid fishing culture

Squid Spectacle Pesta Suntong Bako Shines Light on Sarawak's Unique Fishing Culture
Squid Spectacle Pesta Suntong Bako Shines Light on Sarawak’s Unique Fishing Culture

The inaugural Pesta Suntong Bako 2024, a celebration of squid fishing, made its debut in Sarawak this week.

KUCHING: The event, which took place from June 3 and 4, drew a total of 35 participants.

“Bako was strategically chosen as the venue, not only for its status as one of Sarawak’s national parks but also due to its location within the Sarawak Delta Geopark,” said Kuching Resident Dayang Joanita Azizah Abang Morshidi.

She said the Resident Office has been actively involved in raising awareness and educating the public about the Geopark.

“This initiative forms part of a broader strategy to integrate community participation with environmental conservation. The programme began in Sibu Laut on May 11th and continued this week in Bako, with plans to extend to SMK Paku in Bau in July,” she told a press conference at the Pesta Suntong Bako 2024, at Passenger Terminal, Bako National Park here today (June 2).

For today’s event, participants are competing in two categories: the longest squid and the heaviest squid.

“We hope that the event will become an annual fixture on the region’s calendar, attracting even more participants and spectators in the coming years. Apart from that, the Resident Office has been fostering community involvement by introducing various activities related to the Geopark.

“Last month, community leaders attended a conference in Langkawi, returning with fresh ideas on promoting Sarawak’s Geopark globally. The goal is to achieve UNESCO certification for the Sarawak Delta Geopark, enhancing its international recognition.”

She added that the efforts to involve the local community include educational programmes for children.

“Inspired by Japan’s practice of training young guides, Sarawak aims to instil a sense of pride and knowledge about their local environment in children from a young age.

“This initiative was highlighted by the participation of KEMAS kindergarten children, who discussed the resources and biodiversity of Kampung Bako, fostering excitement and appreciation for their natural surroundings.

“Organisers are optimistic about its future. We envision it growing into a significant event that not only draws local participants but also attracts international visitors from neighbouring countries like Indonesia,” she said.

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