Jumaat, Mac 16, 2012

ARE WE LIVING ON BORROWED TIME OR ON BORROWED LAND?

Welcome to 'mainland Malaysia'!

By Fui K Soong

BETWEEN WEST AND EAST: Greater sensitivity about Sabah's affairs is required

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Children on the famed Tamparuli suspension bridge. Sabahans live between fear and hope. It cannot be assumed that all Sabahans resent the presence of Pinoys in their midst.

SABAH and Sarawak span  198,081 sq km while the peninsula covers only 131,598 sq km, a fact that has prompted a Sabah politician to joke that Sabahans are the true mainlanders of Malaysia.

Although tongue-in-cheek in nature, such comments reflect how Sabahans generally feel about the political distance between the West and the East.

double6i The recent court decision over the dispute between former Sabah chief ministers Tan Sri Harris Salleh and Datuk Seri Yong Teck Lee -- over the choice of words describing the 1976 airplane crash that killed their predecessor Tun Mohd Fuad Stephens and six state ministers -- dredged up my own memories of the accident itself.

I was 10, watching my mother with her massive 1970s hairdo getting dressed in a beautiful batik kaftan and drop earrings, clearly excited about the dinner   she and my father were attending that night to celebrate Berjaya's recent ascension to power.

image Then my father called to tell her what had happened. I was confused when she broke down  and remembered her explaining that, "many of our friends have died today".

I also  remember that the elections during my childhood were filled with curfews, clashes and lots of power cuts (which annoyed me as it meant I couldn't watch  Scooby Doo on TV.)  My father, who took an early retirement, says little about those dark times, and perhaps still has reason to be reticent about it today.

He once joked about how he burned a significant hole in his bank book over a bet he took up with a pork seller, who predicted that Parti Bersatu Sabah  (PBS) would take over 30 seats in the 1987 state elections.

Now that we are facing the 13th general election, there is disquiet again in the Kadazan-Dusun-Murut (KDM) communities. My recent trip to Sabah ended with an interesting conversation with a young Muslim-Bajau teacher and village head, who told us about another village of people called the Bajau Ubian with a voter population of over 1,000 compared with his village of about 800  voters.

Banjir PATI He quietly explained that these higher numbers were due to the presence of Filipinos with blue identity cards. This explains why KDM-based parties are so anxious for a Royal Commission of Inquiry   over the presence of an overwhelming Filipino population.

The locals call them IMM13 (United Nations-refugee status), or PTI (Pendatang Tanpa Izin, or illegal immigrants) to 1Malaysia (fully-fledged citizens). What's scary is all three acronyms can exist within a single family.

It cannot be assumed that all Sabahans resent the presence of Pinoys in our midst. We have accepted that they are part of the land  and that sharing the pie will require harder work than before.

What is politically important for the KDM people and the Chinese is having the sense that a defined solution has been developed to resolve this influx of uncertainty.

Thus, the sensitivity of federal politics when it gets involved in state affairs is a supremely valued requirement.

The Philippines has yet to drop its claims over Sabah. As I walked over the famed hanging bridge of Tamparuli, I sensed that no amount of inquiry will settle the angst that leaves a burning hole in the psyche of Sabahans, caused by having to live between fear and hope.

Are we living on borrowed time or on borrowed land?  When will the landowner come knocking?

32 ulasan:

  1. That is why Sabah should not seceded from Malaysia, once we do, Philippines will lay claims on this state, its not difficult since there are high presence of their people here.

    BalasPadam
    Balasan
    1. kalau ikut sejarah, sabah merdeka pada 31 ogos 1963...malaysia hanya terbentuk pada 16 september 1963... ini membuktikan sabah sebelum bersetuju menyertai pembentukan malaysia adalah sebuah negara yang merdeka dan berdaulat...

      Padam
    2. sebelum 1990-an, jumlah pendatang asing di sabah adalah kurang...namun kini jumlah mereka adalah diluar jangkaan...ramai yang sudah beranak-pinak..dan dikatakan ada sudah yang dapat IC dan hak mengundi yang diberikan melalui pintu belakang..maka RCI adalah perlu ditubuhkan untuk menyiasat perkara ini..

      Padam
    3. Jumlah pendatang asing di Sabah semakin bertambah. sudah beranak pinak di sini, susah sudah mau halau balik, Kerajaan telah banyak membuat program untuk menghalau mereka, namun kurang berjaya, harap RCI dapat di tubuhkan agar dapat menyiasat hal ini.

      Padam
    4. The Philippine government still held hopes that Sabah can return as their own state. We are in a dangerous position if we wanted to seceded.

      Padam
  2. The Federal Government must give back Sabah's rights as stated in the 20 points agreement when Sabah joined Malaya as equal partners.

    BalasPadam
    Balasan
    1. perjanjian 20 perkara harus dilaksanakan sepenuhnya...rasanya jika perjanjian ini dipatuhi, sabah tidak akan menghadapi isu PATI yang serius seperti yang berlaku pada hari ini..

      Padam
    2. Hope that our leaders will discuss abou this matter with the federal government to ensure that the 20 points can be implemented.

      Padam
  3. Kerajaan sememangnya sentiasa berusaha memberi yang terbaik kepada rakyat.

    BalasPadam
    Balasan
    1. kerajaan sentiasa berusaha mencari jalan penyelesaian kepada isu tanah di sabah...

      Padam
    2. Isu tanah harus di selesaikan dengan segera agar masalah ini tidak berpanjangan dan menyusahkan rakyat.

      Padam
    3. Hopefully the NCR land status issue can be resolved as soon as possible.

      Padam
  4. diharap tribunal NCR akan diwujudkan segera untuk menyelesaikan isu2 tanah di sabah.

    BalasPadam
    Balasan
    1. harap tribunal tanah akan segera di tubuhkan bagi menyelesaikan masalah ini.

      Padam
  5. There is need for us to know where we stand.

    BalasPadam
  6. The federal government should address this issue with earnestness.

    BalasPadam
  7. Government should support and protect its people.

    BalasPadam
    Balasan
    1. Hak penduduk harus di pertahankan.

      Padam
  8. I hope this land issue is resolved soonest.

    BalasPadam
  9. I suppose the government is trying to sort out solutions regarding the land issue in Sabah.

    BalasPadam
  10. Coming back to the matter at hand, It is still troubling that after so many years that the Philippines has yet to drop their claim on Sabah.

    BalasPadam
    Balasan
    1. The call to leave Malaysia to form a separate nation will only cause more complication for Sabahan.Among the grounds for this act is the 20 points issue.

      Padam
    2. Issues such as the 20 points that has been made redundant by the Federal government has no basis what so ever.

      Padam
    3. The 20 points as it was already being incorporated within the National constitution which serves the best interest of all Malaysians, be that they are from the peninsular or from the Borneon States.

      Padam
    4. Since the Philippines is still staking their legitimacy claim on Sabah, I believe that it is prudent that Sabah should remain within Malaysia.

      Padam
  11. As for the RCI, now we are waiting for the terms of reference to be concluded. Once this is done, I am sure the PM will announce it for the interest of all Sabahans.

    BalasPadam
  12. terlalu byk masalah dan isu timbul di Sabah, ia amat membimbangkan. kerajaan Sabah harus ambil berat dan tindakan segera dalam selesailkan isu2 yang timbul.

    BalasPadam
    Balasan
    1. Masalah yang paling utama adalah masalah PATI..itu yang harus di selesaikan dengan segera.

      Padam
  13. Just remember that everything happen for a reason.

    BalasPadam
  14. That is why God gives us brain to think and find a solution to the problem.

    BalasPadam
  15. There must be a way to solve the problem, we only need to think more.

    BalasPadam
  16. Kerajaan Negeri memandang serius mengenai perkara ini. Maka kita harap kerajaan Negeri akan meneruskan usaha untuk menyelesaikan masalah PATI di Negeri Sabah ini.

    BalasPadam