The Chinatown Lantern Festival, hosted by the Chinatown Foundation, was held at the Côte D’Or Sports Complex, on 03 February 2023, in the context of the Chinese New Year 2023 celebrations.
The President of the Republic of Mauritius, Mr Prithvirajsing Roopun; the Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Housing and Land Use Planning, Minister of Tourism, Mr Louis Steven Obeegadoo; the Chargé D’Affaires of the Embassy of the People’s Republic of China, Mr Ding Pei Yi; the President of the Chinatown Foundation, Mr Jean Paul Lam; and other eminent personalities were present at the event.
Speaking on the occasion, President Roopun expressed his appreciation to participate in the Lantern Festival which marks the end of the Chinese New Year festivities. He also extended a warm welcome to the Grand Master and 70 monks of the Jinghui Symphony Orchestra. The President further pointed out that the Spring Festival provides an opportunity to celebrate multiculturalism in Mauritius while adding that it is the only country in Africa where the festival is celebrated as an official national holiday since the 1960s.
“The efforts, which our brothers and sisters of Chinese origin have deployed in nation building, need to be acknowledged and praised’’, he said while expressing optimism that they will continue in their endeavour to further uphold the development process in Mauritius with renewed vigour and dedication for the benefit of generations to come. The President also dwelt on the very close and special bond of friendship between Mauritius and China.
Several activities were on the programme including a performance by the Jinghui Symphony Orchestra from China. The Symphony Orchestra was once certified by Guinness as the world’s largest all-monk Zen music troupe. It is recognised by well-known international and domestic professional institutions.
To mark the Chinese Spring Festival, the City Council of Port Louis in collaboration with the Ministry of Arts and Cultural Heritage and the United Chinese Associations also organised a parade of dragon and lion dancers as well as a cultural show on Friday 03 February 2023 at Joseph Rivière Street in Port Louis.