That's what Sibu is most probably famous for, at least from a local's point of view...
This coming May 16th will be fairly important in my life, not only because it's a teachers' day, but also marks the first election in my life and it is even for my own Sibu parliamentary seat after I turn 21 years old. Since young, I've always heard comments like "Why do you go to vote, it doesn't make much changes." or "Don't vote for anyone, just draw a picture of a turtle on the box." and most people in Sibu vote because of some 'incentives'. Wait! What are you thinking? The prime minister did promise millions of ringgit for Sibu's flood mitigation if BN win wat?
So back to kopitiam and churches :
There is a saying in Sibu (i say one lah...) that in every 1km there is a kopitiam and 5km a church. ok that was 2 years ago and now maybe every 500m a kopitiam and 2.5km a church. So now that I have mentioned about kopitiam, church and election, what has it to do with anything at all?
During my school days, I remember everytime when there's an election coming, all the kopitiam along the main road at Rejang Park will be packed at night because there will be some political stuffs n huhu haha around. Kopitiams are commonly used as 'base' for the political parties campaign in those days.
Now, surprisingly I notice that churches have been in one way or another being 'used' as a campaign ground in the coming by-election. Political leaders are meeting Christians openly in hotel conference rooms, outside of church of course, to avoid unnecessary occurrences. Christians have been urged to come out of their comfort zone and start playing a role in the coming election by casting their vote. Since the majority of Sibuans are Christians, it is no wonder that in this coming by-election they are the targeted ones.
All this while as a Christian, I have always thought that this is one private part of my life that no one should have a say in it. It's a relationship between me and my God, but when I read the news about politicians urging Christians to come out n take a stand, it hits me that I am still living in the world and I have been sort of 'selfish' about this part of my life and think that no one else can interfere in this relationship between me and God.
As MP Ngeh Koo Ham puts it, 基督徒除了传福音，做善事，也要关心不公义的事。 (Christians should not only evangelise and do good, but care about injustice as well.)
What say you?
Side-story of the late Sibu MP Mr Robert Lau :
I've always admire Mr Lau's loudness, that's the foochow spirit - loud n direct. I remember there's this chinese new year function cum dinner at a hotel room where he came and shake hands with everyone who attended the dinner. And me and my siblings, being very kia-su, would always bring our books along to everywhere we went. So he came and saw our books, took my youngest brother's hand, looked him in the eyes n said "Keep it up! Read more books!" and I think it left an impact in him n me as well. Someone whom we always see on newspaper would actually care about our books lying around on the table n took special notice in them. That's Datuk Lau, who will always be missed by all Sibuans.
The author was born n raised in Sibu until she's 18 years old. Then something happened and she ended up in Shah Alam for 2 and half years n is currently studying in Germany. A sinner saved by Grace and wishes to be back in Sibu on the 16th of May to cast her vote while enjoying a plate of kampua.
p/s 1 : I tend to capitalise all the nouns when typing this post. So much for my german influence on my englisch.
p/s 2 : I don't like negative or attack comments. I cannot handle them AT ALL. So either positive comments or SHUT UP.
p/s 3 : People in Sibu and illegible to vote, go vote moh! If everyone thinks like you, then mah seriously NO change lor!