KUCHING: Some 400 silat masters statewide are expected to attend the Fourth Silat Convention here today.
Chief Minister Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud is expected to officiate at the event at the State Indoor Stadium.
Troupes from the Rumpun Silat Sarawak (RSS), and the Social Development and Urbanisation Ministry will display their prowess in this enduring Melayu martial art with a special appearance by a team from Kalimantan Barat.
At the event, filled with Melayu cultural shows, silat masters from the 11 regional branches and the headquarters in the state are expected to showcase their talents tonight. After the opening, a silat seminar will be held until Monday at Penview Inn here.
“Apart from the performance, the Convention is to bring silat masters from various parts of Sarawak for a briefing on the latest development of the martial art,” RSS secretary-general Muhammad Haneef Ali said yesterday.
He added that the Convention would also be a platform for the masters to strengthen their relationships, and the organisers to seek ways to sustain the martial art, which is part of the culture of the Melayu community.
Haneef hoped that by holding the convention, the younger generation would be encouraged to take up silat.
“Silat is not only about self-defence as it also helps the individual to cultivate strong moral values and learn to respect each other.”
Pointing out that silat should not be only for the Melayu, he hoped to see the other races joining the fraternity of this ancient martial art, saying: “Silat could well be the platform to enhance the 1Malaysia Concept.”
Similar conventions were held in 2001, 2003 and 2006.
RSS now has 23,000 members in the state with the largest number in Kuching.
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