Neon Beer Fest 2018: All Mirians Welcome
In response to the recent PAS Miri protests against the Neon Beer Fest, Prima Buzz contacted the organizers iPrima Media, X Dream Event and Village Sound. They maintain that the Neon Beer Fest is a Sarawakian event, meant for “Sarawakian sensitivities”. Stating that while they were compliant with all regulations, they were concerned with how this incident was not reflective of the peace, unity and multiculturalism that the Sarawakian community was known for. Adding further, they accommodated for the event with non alcoholic beverages and food, so all Sarawakians can enjoy the music filled festival if they felt so inclined.
Noting the tendency for neighbouring cities like Kuching to host major entertainment events, the Neon Beer Fest was created as Miri’s homegrown festival, encouraging tourists and visitors alike to enjoy the party experience Miri has to offer.
The event kicked off with high profile guests such as the Mayor of Miri City Mr Adam Yii and Datuk Lee Kim Shin, who gave the opening speech.
Miri has always been a cosmopolitan city and is open. Miri’s races and religious have mutual respect and mutual understanding. Miri has been a fine example of a harmonious city, where everyone feels very much at home, irrespective of race and religion. Let’s keep it that way, and lets not allow any extremist elements to come in and create disunity and misunderstanding among people.
Datuk Lee Kim Shin
Despite the call by PAS to ban all future beer festivals, there is a resounding rejection of this narrative by Mirians on social media.
PAS Miri officials launched a police report yesterday afternoon on 13th October with the intention to limit the involvement of those of the Islamic faith at the event. Social Media and the Malaysian blogosphere was abuzz with reports detailing the protests. Several mainstream newspapers, including the Borneo Post, the Sun Daily and the Dayak community oriented Dayak Daily reported the news. The members of PAS who took to facebook to condemn the event, citing it as religiously insensitive and the consumption of alcohol was morally objectionable by all major institutions of faith in Sarawak.
The biggest beer festival in Miri is not in line with the culture and customs of the locals, especially Muslims in Miri. Although the festival is for non-Muslims, we need to show protests so that such a program will no longer be held in the future.
Jofri Jaraiee – Sarawak PAS Commissioner cum Miri PAS Chief
This has drawn harsh criticism by Sarawakian Netizens who insist this is an infringement of their multicultural spirit. Taking to the comments sections, the varied views range were everything you could expect from a controversial facebook post.
While many responses encouraged unity and self expression, others were openly hostile and making threats to those who chose to participate.
Here is a link to the original posts. Read at your discretion:
The event organizers have come forward in professing their belief in Miri’s love for food, music and entertainment. They have every confidence that Mirians will celebrate with them wholehearted for the next 3 days.