KOTA KINABALU: The title of Huguan Siou is considered ‘sacred’ by the KDM community and should only bestowed upon those from the community.
Minister of Tourism, Culture and Environment, Datuk Masidi Manjun, said Malaysia was a racially, religiously and culturally diverse country and people should have mutual respect for each others traditions and cultural sensitivities.
“The person who bestowed this title was probably trying to gain political mileage but the person who accepted it is either ignorant or just plain insensitive. Either way it is unacceptable of a person of his years of experience in politics and government,” he said.
He said the title of Huguan Siou should not be used as a political tool to further one’s agenda.
“Irrespective of our different political affliation and disagreement on many issues, Sabahans must be united in recognising and respecting our cultural heritage and tradition,” he said.
Masidi said, any action that was deemed to belittle the institution of the Huguan Siou was an action belittling the cultural heritage of Sabah, adding that political agenda should always give way to the overriding interest of Sabahans.
Meanwhile, PBS vice president, Datuk Herbert T Lagadan opined that Pakatan Rakyat leader, Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, should apologise to the KDM community and Sabahans for accepting the sash.
Herbert also took APS President, Datuk Seri Panglima Wilfred M Bumburing to task for not putting a stop to the act of garlanding Anwar with the sash.
“Bumburing was present at the function and he should have protested immediately when he saw that Anwar would be presented with the sash. How could Bumburing, who claims to be championing the rights of the KDM community allow an ‘outsider’ to be bestowed with the title of our Paramount leader?” the Kadamaian assemblyman pointed out. (BP)