Friday, October 10, 2008



The younger generation of Dayak Selakau. They are proud to use their "just found" traditional costume.

Dayak Selakau is one of Bidayuh ethnic in Sarawak. They are mostly settled at kampungs in Lundu District, Kuching Division. It is believed that the Selakau population is not more than 20,000 which represents about five per cent of the population of one of Sarawak's smallest tribes whose roots have been traced to West Kalimantan.

It cannot be accurately ascertained why the Selako left their origin land. It could be due to some unsettling conditions in which they lived and farmed or they could be seeking temporary refuge from some hostile tribes. Perhaps, they were attracted by Chinese traders stopping along the Sarawak coasts to buy and sell. Dayak Selakau still maintain their kinship ties with the Dayak Selakau community on the Indonesian side. They still speak the same dialect. They speak in a language that nobody outside their world will understand and uniquely it is most similar to Malay but in different slang.

Nowaday, most of their settlement are being well connected with tar sealed roads, electricity and treatment water, thanks to the concern of government. Most of them are christian with some still pagan, muslimor even buddhist due to mix marriage. Their traditional occupation are farmers and fisherman. Nowadays, with the great development of Kuching Division, some Selakau upgraded themselves to become modern farmers, few work in government and private sectors.

To those familiar with their way of life, the Dayak Selakau have a unqiue culture. They believe in holding gawai for almost anything and their cultural dances are like no others. As one of Selakau, I find that we may be described as 'a lost and found tribe' who will no doubt attract considerable interests.

The photos above are traditional costume for Dayak Selakau. I do not know either this is the full costume as they also have other costume on different colour and materials. This Photo is taken during Pesta Narankg at Kampung Pueh in 2006. I will reveals later on Pesta Narankg on other section.

I wondering either the younger generation of Selakau know their identity, their unique culture, their amazing crafts, or like no others celebration. As for me, my knowledge on my own race is too little to share among us.Hope that one day, there is a documentation and further research on Dayak Selakau. I will try my best to reveals and share some of the beauty on Dayak Selakau. The most important is I'm proud to be one of 20,000 Selakau in Malaysia. He he...

End of Part 1.

To Be Continue.......


Anonymous said...

interesting. im half selakau. do u have other pics of the costumes for ladies? havent seen any.. thanks

Gold Arawana said...

Mr Anonymous;

Thanks and sorry for late reply on your comment.

I am sorry that I dont have any at this moment. The one I publish in this article is the only type of costume I have...

nookvillage said...

I have few Dayak Selakau friends. I discovered that they are no difference from Malay or Bidayuh perhaps we are of the same "stalk".
I hope they join us all in the developments of Sarawak. Nookvillage

Anonymous said...

Do they all speak like indonesian? Or is there any way anyone can differentiate between malaysian selakau and indonesian selakau?
With all due respect I just wonder...cheers and kudos to this blog!����