‘Gasing’, kite flying losing lustre on youth

National 2 minutes, 14 seconds


THE traditional outdoor games of “gasing” (spin top) and kite flying are no longer as alluring to the youth nowadays as the generation of yore.

Senior members of the Village Consultative Council (MPK) of Kg Tungki-Katok lamented the waning interest of the youth on such traditional games during the Family Day 2015 at the Taman Agro Teknologi, Tungku Gadong.

Football, however, continues to be a popular outdoor sports for the youth.

Hj Janidi Hj Saban, a 57 year-old gasing maker, said that modernisation is weakening such cultural heritage as gasing and kite-flying at a fast rate.

“The young generation is not (anymore) interested in the traditional games of our ancestors. They like modern outdoor games that are fun and accepted as the new games for the youth,” said Hj Janidi, apparently referring to football.

He said that most of the time, when it comes to gasing competition or gathering, the participants were mostly senior or middle-aged members of the community.

“It’s understandable that gasing is not an easy game to play. It requires skills and determination to master. It’s such a loss to us (Bruneians) if there is no continuation to our next generation,” he added.

He said that he trained his children to play gasing so that they can inherit the tradition.

“All of my children and grandchildren know how to play gasing and it’s not just the boys but also the girls,” he said.

Hj Janidi said that in the gasing association under his supervision, majority of the members are senior citizens.

“There are a total of 20 members in the association and only five are still active in playing the game,” he said.

Sharing similar sentiments on the waning interest of the youth on traditional outdoor games, 64 year-old kite-flying enthusiast Hj Basar Hj Bungsu told The Brunei Times that nowadays, kite-flying is not safe to play in many areas.

“There are some restrictions on kite-flying. It’s dangerous to play nearby the road or even in an open area, as we are afraid of the planes passing by,” said Hj Basar.

To keep the traditional outdoor games from vanishing, the Village Village of Kg Kiulap and advisor of Brunei Darussalam Kikik Association, Hj Mohammad Abu Bakar, said that they took many initiatives to strengthen the value of traditional outdoor games, such as conducting competitions.

“Our efforts include exposing the association to the public through competitions and also by our visits to outside countries such as Johor Bharu, Philippines and Germany to represent the sultanate,” said Hj Mohammad.

The enthusiasts echoed that in order to enliven the traditional games, concerned agencies should initiate events to expose the youth to them.

The Brunei Times