The Director of China Cultural Centre, Mr Song Yanqun
The Councillor of the Chinese Embassy, Mr Liliang
The President of Chinese Fine Arts, Mr Eddy Yeung
Members of Nam Shun Fooy Koon (NSFK)
Friends of NSFK
Ladies & Gentlemen
Good afternoon & a warm welcome to you all to this banquet lunch on the occasion of the 160th Anniversary of NSFK.
I wish first of all to apologise to my friends of the China Cultural Centre & the Chinese Embassy because I will now address my speech in Kreol for the members of NSFK. I guess that it would have been more appropriate if my address is in Cantonese but alas as you are aware my Cantonese is very limited. Mrs Cindy will give you a summary at the end of my speech. Thanks for your understanding.
Tai Ka Ho!
If there is one day that we have all been looking forward to, it is this very day! Our day for being together and joining hands in celebration has finally come. My friends from the Executive Committee and I invite you to start the festivities and to make this once in a lifetime event a big success.
I am very emotional because it is the culmination of a dream that becomes a reality today. I still remember when last September I proposed to my colleagues of the Executive Committee to celebrate NSFK Anniversary for a week; I never would have imagined that it would be a herculean task to achieve. I told myself that any challenge without proper planning is doomed even before we started it. Fortunately, my team of Committee Members was keen to my idea of celebrating NSFK Anniversary for a week and that they assured me that they will all be on board in this project.
We shared the work and we met regularly to have a review of the situation. Today is the result of their tireless work, commitment and devotion that is rewarded. I invite you all to stand up and give them a loud round of applause.
NSFK is one of the oldest Chinese Association in Mauritius and also in the southern hemisphere. We are celebrating today its 160 years existence. We must remember that during its history many people have given their time sometimes to the detriment of their family to see to it that NSFK continues to shine high in the sky. Of course, there were a few exceptional persons who with their course of actions have changed the destiny of NSFK. I have in mind three personalities who deserve our recognition namely the founder of NSFK, Mr Affan Tank Wen, Mr Marc Fok Seung and more recently Mr Philip Lai Sang. We have given them due respect by giving each one an article in our commemorative souvenir magazine you have in hand.
The Nam Shun is a small community. We are less than 2000. Even small, we are strong because we are united and we have blended ourselves well in the Chinese Community. I was pleased to note that our appeal for sponsorships and donations have received a good response. This denotes that these people firmly believe in the actions of NSFK and their symbolic contribution is a token of their confidence in our association. I thank them from the bottom of my heart.
My thanks go also to the China Cultural Centre, to the Chinese Fine Arts Association, to Denise Wong and her team of decorators, to Jacques Li and his team, to the Poo Yeng Centre, to my team of the Executive Committee and last but not least to the wonderful family of NSFK. Without these mentioned organisations and people, we wouldn’t have been able to celebrate this 160th Anniversary in great pomp today. Hats off to you all!
As I mentioned earlier NSFK has a long history. It has been managed well by countless Managing Committees in the past but to continue to perpetuate the destiny of NSFK we need young blood to join us. I appeal to you, elders of our Society, to encourage your children to participate in the activities of NSFK and eventually, why not, to become an active member.
We have today among us 2 philanthropists who have always supported NSFK. They remain behind the curtains but they very well have at heart the well being of NSFK. Each time when we sought their support, they have done their best to help. Mr Pierre Fok Kow and Mr Ah Fock Tang Kan are good friends and they consider NSFK to be part of their life. I associate myself with my Committee Members to thank them for their continuous support.
During my years of presidency, I worked to the best of my capacities to elevate NSFK to new heights and I will continue to do so till my term ends. I conclude by wishing a Happy Birthday to NSFK and by a quote from the Brazilian Football Star, Pele, who said this “Success is no accident. It is hard work, perseverance, learning, studying, sacrifice, and most of all, love of what you are doing”
Long Live NSFK!!!
Thank you for your attention.