Kota Kinabalu August 08, 2012: Sabahans should grow up and take charge of their State and resolve their problems instead of relying too much on Kuala Lumpur and Malayan leaders to solve their problems, said Datuk Dr Jeffrey Kitingan.
Speaking at a Borneo Tea Party (BTP) in Sabah Golf and Country Club, the Chairman of Star Sabah said Sabah was no longer a colony and has matured politically since it gained self government and formed Malaysia 49 years ago.
"It was unfortunate that when Sabah was persuaded to join Singapore, Sarawak and Malaya to form Malaysia, she was politically unprepared and did not have educated nor experienced leaders to negotiate and take on the responsibilities of a young nation, what more be part of a Federation,"
"All we had were Donald Stephens, a Form Five school leaver and Tun Mustapha Harun who completed only Primary Six, at the top of the leadership of a young nation," he said.
Jeffrey said the Cobbold Commission wrote in its report that North Borneo needed another 20 years and Sarawak 10 years to be politically ready.
So, this was the reason why Sabah became dependent on Kuala Lumpur/Malaya for guidance and leadership, which the latter gladly provided.
"Little did our Sabahan leaders realise that Kuala Lumpur/Malaya had their own agendas and priorities," he said.
"Their agendas and priorities were not the same as ours and they took full advantage of this situation.
Today, Sabahans must realise what this dependence has brought them and that the neglect of our responsibilities has meant the loss of our autonomy/special rights, loss of our political franchise, loss of our revenues and control of our most valuable natural resource, poverty, and so on.
"Yet we Sabahans continue to be dependent on KL/Malaya for leadership.
We continue to believe that without the support of the said leadership of the so called national or Malayan political parties we are doomed," he said.