Friday, 8 March 2013


“NOW THAT the fear felt by Sabahans have become a reality, Najib as the current Prime Minister, must not only guarantee the security of Sabahans but he must also restore their confidence because security was the number one reason why Sabahans agreed to be part of Malaysia”, said Datuk Dr Jeffrey Kitingan, STAR Sabah Chief.

“So far, the Federal Government dominated by Malaya and led by UMNO/BN has not only failed but has put Sabah and its citizens at risks and made Sabah insecure by supporting Muslim rebellion in the Philippines and supplying them weapons, giving them refuge and training facilities in Sabah, and worst by deploying them as voters in Sabah through the ‘Project IC Mahathir’ despite knowing full well that the same group of people from the Philippines have unsettled claim over Sabah” he said.

Dr Jeffrey stressed that Najib, as the current Prime Minister has a moral duty to put things right and restore the confidence of Sabahans.  That is why we Sabahans support the RCI as part of a necessary action to put things right.  But that is not enough. 

The declaration of Kudat to Semporna being a Special Security Area with the deployment of 5 battalions of about 5,000 police and army personnel with immediate effect is not sufficient to restore confidence.  A lot more needs to be done to regain the confidence of the people of Sabah who feel cheated by the Federal Government.

The Prime Minister also needs to realize that Sabah belongs to the people of Sabah and is only part of Malaysia. Sabah did not join Malaysia and Malaysia does not own Sabah as the Malaysia Agreement is yet to be implemented. 

Sabah is not a piece of lifeless property to be fought over between the Philippines (Sulu claim) and Malaya. Therefore, any talks between Malaysia/Malaya and the Philippines must include Sabah because only the people of Sabah can decide what they want to do.  There has never been a referendum on Sabah as state by some academicians.

The so called ‘referendum’ in 1962/3 is NOT a referendum but only a sampling survey of about 4,000 people in 15 locations  (lessthan 1 %) of the 467,000Sabah population.  It is also not correct to state that 2/3 of the population agreed when only 1/3 agreed unconditionally.

To restore confidence, the Federal Government must clean up the mess created by Mahathir and UMNO in Sabah.  UMNO should leave Sabah politics to Sabahans and local political parties. 

In fact, the time has come to review the implementation of the Malaysia Agreement and ensure its viability and survival by addressing unhappiness of the other remaining partners – Sabah and Sarawak.

Up till now, 49 years after Malaysia’s birth, the benefits of Malaysia have been lopsided with Malaya gaining the most while Sabah having lost the most.

The Sabah claim, whether valid or not, must be resolved once and for all by bringing all the relevant parties to the table within the ambit of Britain and the United Nations and find a peaceful solution. (STAR Media)

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