June 30, 2012: The future of the Kadazandusuns in Sabah looks gloomy. The number of committed and issue-oriented Kadazandusun leaders is very limited.
We are supposed to elect leaders to represent us and solve our problems but we have ended up seeing them fighting each other for money and position.
Going by media reports, it seems like the blame game over the 1994 incident has not ended.
If one would want to blame someone for after causing the Kadazandusun to split 1994, it would be the Kadazandusun leaders themselves
The recent spat between Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) president-cum-Deputy Chief Minister Pairin Kitingan and his younger brother Jeffrey Kitingan has revealed the deep mistrust between the two famous brothers.
The fact is, the 1994 incident was everyone’s fault. There is no point in blaming any one person.
One could give 1,001 reasons for the fall of PBS but at the end of the day, the losers are the rakyat.
It is time for the Kadazandusun leaders to stop blaming each other and start looking forward to developing the Kadazandusuns.
Whether the Kadazandusun leaders realise it or not, the rakyat are getting frustrated with the kind politics that their leaders are playing.
The younger generation is looking for leaders who can discuss policy and have ideas on how to develop the country.
Attacking each other’s personality and character is no longer relevant.
Nothing constructive from KDM leaders
As it stands, I do not see the Kadazandusun leaders are doing anything constructive to develop their community.
To move forward to meet the Malaysia Vision, we must firstly stop the blame game about the reasons for the Kadazandusun to split.
Leave the past alone. Pairin, Jeffrey, Bernard Dompok (Upko president) and Joseph Kurup (PBSR) and those who claim to represent the Kadazandusuns have to set aside their ego and look for solutions to solve the plight of the Kadazandusuns.
They must have a plan – a practical one at that – to ensure that the Kadazandusuns can contribute meaningfully to the development of the country.
They must ask themselves this pertinent question: “Where are the Kadazandusuns in spite of the transformational mode the country is now experiencing?”
These leaders may have different political ideologies but for the sake of the Kadazandusuns, they must place the interest of the rakyat above anything else.
Secondly, Kadazandusun leaders must stop talking about petty issues in the media such as those concerning a person’s personality and character.
They must put their qualification and experience to good use such as debating policy and finding practical solutions to the problems faced by the rakyat.
Character assassination is an outdated approach to politics in the 21st century.
If the Kadazandusun leaders want to remain relevant, they have no choice but to subscribe to the political approach of the modern era.
The younger generation whose votes are crucial in the upcoming election is now looking at leaders who are both technologically savvy and able to articulate issues affecting the public.
The writer is a lecturer in political science at Universiti Teknologi MARA Sabah.