Kota Kinabalu: Live video calls, group chats, messages, selfies and other online services facilitated by smartphones and other electronic gudgets kept people from near and far connected during the Hari Raya Aidilfitri celebration amid the Covid-19 outbreak and social distancing measures that were introduced.Just like Malaysians in other states, Muslim revellers in Sabah celebrated the special occasion in low key and moderate tone due to Covid-19 while confined to their homes.
Thanks to technology, they managed to remain in touch with their loved ones, families, relatives and friends during the first and second day (Sunday and Monday) celebration. They were forced to observe the conditional movement control order (CMCO) standard operating procedures to prevent any possible increase in positive cases during the celebrations.
“If not for modern technology, this year’s celebration could have been boring and less meaningful,” said Nor Hamdan.
“We managed to stay connected with those who could not be with us due to the CMCO,” Nor added.
Abdullah, who works in Kota Kinabalu, said the free video calls enabled him and his family to live stream with their parents in Lahad Datu Sunday.
“The video calls in a way helped replace the traditional ‘Balik Kampung’ practice. The country is now facing a health crisis and it is very important for people to strictly comply with the SOP of the CMCO for the good of all,” he stressed.
On her part, Fatimah said despite the travel ban imposed both by Malaysia and the Philippines, she managed to exchange Hari Raya greetings with her parents, brothers and sisters, as well as relatives and friends back home in Zamboanga City through the smartphone.
“This is what we call a ‘new normal’. The war against Covid-19 is not yet over that is why we have to be extra careful with our health and the environment,” she said.