Unduk Ngadau

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The Unduk Ngadau 2014, Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 2014, Cheryl Lynn Pinsius, among the other six finalist

Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan is a beauty pageant held during the Kaamatan cultural event in Sabah, Malaysia. The title comes from the ethnic word Runduk Tadau which means 'the girl crowned by the sunlight'.[1] Unduk Ngadau is one of the most recognizable cultural events in Sabah and the beauty pageant is unique to the state. In Rungus Language, Runduk means "to communicate", and Tadau means "the Sun", therefore Unduk Ngadau translates to communicate with Sundu(Kinorohingan) or God asking for blessing of sunlight. The current Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan is Ryannie Neils Yong, representing Tanjung Aru, crowned by the Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 2014, Cheryl Lynn Pinsius from Kota Kinabalu during the state-level Kaamatan Festival in May 2015.


The Unduk Ngadau beauty contest was to serve as a memorial to Huminodun, the sacrificed daughter of the Kadazandusun spirits, Kinorohingan and Suminundu. It is believed that she taught the priestesses known locally as Bobohizan their ritual mantras which exist today.

Competition and contestants' notes[edit]

Contestants in the state-level pageants are generally the winner of their district's pageant. However, some districts hold joint pageants which produce more than one state-level contestant. Notably, Tuaran and Tamparuli hold a joint pageant with the winner going on to representing Tuaran, and the first runner up representing Tamparuli.

Beginning in 1995, Sabahan residing in Peninsular Malaysia were allowed to participate in the state pageant by representing Klang Valley. The first winner representative from Klang Valley was Daphne M.Iking. She won the title in 2003. Then in following year, Janeitha Stephen also a representative from Klang Valley, placed as first runner up to Tamparuli's Fharelynne Ivonne Henry in 2004. Many of the Klang Valley winners had their best placement in the competition such as in 2005, 2007, 2008 and 2013.

Also beginning in 2014, state of Johor (KDCA Johor) will compete in the final competition on May 31.

Penampang won the title most with 26 crowns. Following by Tuaran (including Sulaman, Tamparuli and Kiulu) with 8 crowns, Papar (including Bongawan and Kawang) with 7 crowns and both Putatan and Inanam with 3 crowns. There are several winners with only one title from their district they represented. Lynnefra Wong (1996) represented Sandakan, Regina Intang (2000) from Melalap and Melinda Louis (2012) from Telupid.

Some of the winners had been joining in other pageants. The 1982 winner, Margaret Dolly Jimayol entered Miss Malaysia Universe in 1984. Sylvia Sandralisa Orow (1991), was a winner of Miss Sabah Malaysia World 1993. Kathie Renjus (1999) joined Miss Malaysia World in 2003. The 2004 winner, Fharelynne Ivonne Henry, joined Miss Sabah Malaysia World in 2006 and placed 1st runner up. Madelyne M.Nandu (2005) was Miss Sabah Malaysia World 2007 and also Miss Malaysia Earth 2009 winner. Devenna Jaikob, Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 2006, was a winner of Miss Sabah Malaysia World 2008. Appey Rowenna Januin, the winner of 2009, was a winner of Miss Malaysia Earth 2010. Immaculate Lojuki who won the crown on 2013, was Miss Earth Sabah 2014 and Miss Malaysia International 2015.

Some of the winners are not 100% purely Kadazandusun. Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 1960, Yong Mee Lan, is Sino-Kadazan. Her mother is Kadazan from Penampang and her father is Chinese. Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 1979, Mary Solly is a Eurasian. Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 1966, Patricia Sinidol and Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 1972, Evelyn Sinidol were sisters and both are Eurasian. Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 1967, Florence Bibi Kaur is mixed 2 parentage. Her father is Punjabi and her mother is Kadazan from Papar. Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 1980, Roslina Amit, is Lotud-Bajau ethnic and the only Muslim winner ever crowned. Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 1993, Luzie Tham, is Sino-Kadazan same with Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 1996 winner, Lynnefra Wong, who also a Sino-Kadazan. Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 1997, Jane Lisa Marie William, is a Eurasian same with Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 2001 winner, Nicolita Sanseh Masi who also a Eurasian. Joanna Sue Henley Rampas who won the crown on 2007, was Eurasian who her father is from Britain and her mother is Dusun from Kampung Poturidong, Kiulu, Tuaran.

The competition before 2007, many of the districts send more than 1 representative each year. Such as: Kota Belud send 3 contestants (Usukan, Kedamaian, Tempasuk). Tuaran send 3 contestants (Kiulu, Sulaman, Tamparuli). Papar send 3 contestants (Bongawan, Kawang, Buang Sayang). Keningau sends 2 contestants and one for representative for Bingkor (1st runner up Unduk Ngadau Daerah Keningau). Ranau also send 2 representative and one for Kundasang (1st runner up Unduk Ngadau Daerah Ranau). The Kota Kinabalu City sends 3 representative for Api Api (winner), Likas (1st runner up) and Sembulan (2nd runner up). Nowdays, they send only 3 girls to represent DBKK, Likas and Tanjung Aru and sometimes for Inanam repectively.

The total 42 districts all around Sabah including Labuan, Klang Valley and Johor sends their representative each year. Among the districts are:

Banggi, Kudat, Matunggong, Pitas, Kota Marudu, Kota Belud, Tuaran, Tamparuli, Inanam, Likas, Kota Kinabalu, Tanjung Aru, Penampang, Putatan, Papar, Beaufort, Membakut, Kuala Penyu, Menumbok, Sipitang, Sook, Pegalungan, Nabawan, Tenom, Kemabong, Keningau, Tambunan, Ranau, Telupid, Paitan, Beluran, Tongod, Sandakan, Kinabatangan, Lahad Datu, Semporna, Kunak, Tungku and Tawau.

From 1992, the contestans must be above 18 to enter the pageant and must be non-muslim women prior to the contest before which they allowed the high school women to enter the pageant and the Muslim women to be in the contest.

There are 3 winners who were confirmly had passed away: Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 1960, Yong Mee Lan (1977), Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 1965, Molina Daniel (2005) and Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 1989, Deidre Peter Mojuntin (2002).

Beginning in 2012, the final questions format becoming more interestingly when the final contestants must answer their final question in their mother-language. Melinda Louis from Telupid was the first contestant who actually succeeded the final round for this very first format and was crowned as Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 2012.

The youngest winner ever crowned is Molina Daniel from Papar. She won in 1965, at the age of 14. The oldest winner ever crowned is Daphne M.Iking represented Kuala Lumpur. She won in 2003, at the age of 25.

The state-level pageant is held on the 30th and 31st of May every year at the Hongkod Koisaan or known as KDCA building in Penampang, and is the highlight and ending point of the month-long Kaamatan celebrations.

Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 1991-2015[edit]

The Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 2013, Immaculate Lojuki during her farewell walk in Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan 2014
Year Winners Districts Village/Notes
1991 Sylvia Sandralisa Orow Tuaran Currently live at New York City, New York, USA
1992 Anita Pudin Putatan Kg. Koidupan
1993 Luzie @ Lucy Tham Inanam Kg. Bambangan
1994 Agatha Nora Lojimin Penampang
1995 Justinah Manius Kawang Runners up in Unduk Ngadau Daerah Papar 1995
1996 Lynnefra @ Lynn Alfera Wong Sandakan
1997 Jan Lisamarrie William Bongawan From Kg. Limbahau, Papar who represented Bongawan. Winner for Unduk Ngadau Daerah Papar 1997
1998 Jeremia Ginajil Inanam Kg. Kitobu
1999 Kathie Renjus Inanam Kg. Dambai
2000 Regina Intang Melalap From Kg. Pamilaan, Tenom who represented Melalap. (Runners up in Unduk Ngadau Daerah Tenom 2000)
2001 Nicolita Sanseh Masi Putatan
2002 Patrecia Raymond Kiulu From Kg. Panjut, Tamparuli who represented Kiulu (2nd runner up in Unduk Ngadau Daerah Tuaran 2002)
2003 Daphne M.Iking Kuala Lumpur From Tambunan who represented Kuala Lumpur
2004 Fharelynne Ivonne Henry Tamparuli From Kg. Tagas, Tuaran (1st runner up in Unduk Ngadau Daerah Tuaran 2004)
2005 Madelyne M.Nandu Penampang Kg. Babah/Bunduon
2006 Devenna Jaikob Sulaman From Kg. Timbou, Tambunan who represented Sulaman (Runners up in Unduk Ngadau Daerah Tuaran 2006). Also won the Unduk Ngadau SAPP 2006.
2007 Joanna Sue Henley Rampas Tuaran From Kg. Poturidong, Kiulu who officially won Unduk Ngadau Daerah Tuaran 2007
2008 Leonie Lawrence Gontuni Penampang Kg. Sukod
2009 Appey Rowenna Januin Papar Kg. Tomui
2010 Crystel Eve Huminodun William Majimbun Tanjung Aru From Kg. Tatahan, Inanam who represented Tanjung Aru (Runners up in Unduk Ngadau Kota Kinabalu 2010) Her mother, Esther Sikayun won the same title in 1984.
2011 Botiza Arthur Disimond Penampang From Kg. Hubah. Her aunt, Johanna Sybil Disimond won the same title in 1986.
2012 Melinda Louis Telupid From Kg. Gading. She won in 2008 for Telupid but can't represented because of her study.
2013 Immaculate Lojuki Kota Kinabalu From Kg. Pogunon, Penampang who represented Kota Kinabalu
2014 Cheryl Lynn Pinsius Kota Kinabalu From Kg. Bantayan, Inanam who represented Kota Kinabalu. Previously, Unduk Ngadau Daerah Kecil Inanam in 2011.
2015 Ryannie Neils Yong Tanjung Aru From Kg. Nambayan, Tambunan who represented Tanjung Aru (2nd runner up in Unduk Ngadau Bandaraya Kota Kinabalu 2015)
2016 TBA TBA

Former editions[edit]

Before the official name change to Unduk Ngadau in 1987, the pageant was called Miss Kadazan in the 60s, Miss Harvest Festival in the 70s and Ratu Pesta Menuai from 1980 to 1986. The title Unduk Ngadau Kaamatan begin from 1987 till present.

Miss Kadazan 1960-1970[edit]

Year Winners Districts Village/Notes
1960 Yong Mee Lan @ Mui Lan Penampang Donggongon (She's not the winner for Penampang Unduk Ngadau that years as for all the contestants are from Penampang area). Her title was Hahaangai 1960.
1961 Talian Bunal Papar Kg. Limpotung
1962 Marcella Tiansim Papar Kg. Dambai
1963 Mary Badak Putatan Kg. Terawih
1964 Rita Bagong Tuaran Kg. Sawah (Known as Datuk Rita Jaafar)
1965 Molina Daniel Papar Kg. Dambai
1966 Patricia Sinidol Penampang From Kg. Lunghab. She is Datuk Fred Sinidol's sister. Her sister, Evelyn Sinidol won the same title in 1972.
1967 Florence Bibi Kaur Singh Papar Kg. Limpotung (Known as Datuk Hajah Bibi Florina Abdullah)
1968 Rita Mojilis Penampang Kg. Nosoob
1969 Sylvia Totu Penampang Her sister, Edwina Totu won the same title in 1976.
1970 Helen Mojiniu Penampang

Miss Harvest Festival 1971-1980[edit]

Year Winners Districts Village/Notes
1971 Mary @ Mili Jaikoh Imbayan Tamparuli Kg. Bawang. She also placed 3rd in the previous contest.
1972 Evelyn Sinidol Penampang From Kg. Lunghab. Her sister, Patricia Sinidol won the same title in 1966.
1973 Prisca Tikoh Penampang Kg. Moyog
1974 Susanna Jipanis Penampang
1975 Rita Sikawa Penampang
1976 Edwina Totu Penampang Her sister, Sylvia Totu won the same title in 1969.
1977 Mary Marjorie Kinjau Penampang Her sister, Janet Kinjau won the same title in 1983.
1978 Veronica Jefferin Penampang
1979 Mary Solly Penampang
1980 Roslina Amit Tuaran Kg. Dalit (The only Muslim Unduk Ngadau ever)

Ratu Pesta Menuai 1981-1990[edit]

Year Winners District Village/Notes
1981 Janet Dabi Penampang
1982 Margaret Dolly Jimayol Penampang That year Margaret represented Beaufort but declared as Penampang representative. From Kg. Sugud, Penampang.
1983 Janet Kinjau Penampang Her sister, Mary Margaret Kinjau won the same title in 1977.
1984 Esther Sikayun Penampang From Kg. Moyog. Her daughter, Crystel Eve Huminodun William Majimbun won the same title in 2010.
1985 Florence Jipiu Penampang Kg. Kolopis
1986 Johanna Sybil Disimond Penampang From Kg. Hubah. Her niece, Botiza Arthur Disimond won the same title in 2011.
1987 Joan Glory Tommy Penampang
1988 Jenny Alasa Penampang
1989 Deidre Peter Mojuntin Penampang From Kg. Sugud. She is the daughter of the late Datuk Peter Mojuntin.
1990 Julia Agustine Tanjung Aru From Kg. Dungkahang, Penampang who represented Tanjung Aru.


External links[edit]