This year-Ngo drew the participation of 51 teams including 41 men’s boat race teams and 10 women’s boat race teams) from Soc Trang, Bac Lieu, Ca Mau, Hau Giang, Vinh Long. They competed in two distances of 1.000m and 1.200m.
The Ngo boat race is among the traditional activities of the Khmer people in the annual Ooc Om Bok Festival. The Ngo boat race conveyed the unity of the Khmer culture, one of the characteristic traits in Vietnam’s southern region.
Regarding the work of ensuring social order during the festival, Senior Colonel Le Minh Quang, Director of Soc Trang Provincial Police said that the Public Security Force of the Province had a working session with the Military Command, Border Guards Command, Department of Transport, Department of Health and the Soc Trang People's Committee to provide protection plans, contributing to maintaining social order as well as ensuring the absolute safety for delegates and participants.
Particularly, they focused on controlling and regulating traffic with the aim of avoiding traffic jam and unexpected accidents. The forces also synchronously deployed professional measures and took initiative in grasping any situations, preventing crimes, blasts, explosions.
Ooc Om Bok is one of three main festivals, along with Sene Dolta and Chol Chnam Thmay which the Khmer people celebrate every year. It has been recognised as a national intangible cultural heritage by the Ministry of Culture, Sports, and Tourism.
The festival, also called the Festival of Moon Worship, begins around 7-8 pm on the evening of the 14th day of the 10th lunar month when the moon’s position is high in the sky. Khmer people celebrate outdoors or at Khmer pagodas, praying for good luck, happiness, good weather, and bumper crops.
By Linh Bui