Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak on Tuesday (30 March 2010) announced the government’s new economic plan, the New Economic Model (NEM), to ensure fairer and more equitable distribution of wealth based on needs and merits.
“Our priority must be to eradicate poverty irrespective of race. We cannot have the high-income, sustainable and inclusive economy we seek when disparities in income and not addressed.
“So there will be renewed affirmative action policy in NEM with focus on raising income levels of all disadvantage groups,” he said.
NEM’s three principles are:
# high income – making a quantum leap from a current US$7,000 per capital annual
income to US$15,000 in ten years;
# sustainability – a commitment to sustainability in economic activities with its impact on environment and precious natural resources in consideration; and
# inclusiveness – harness the potential of all Malaysians that all share in the proceeds of increased national prosperity.
NEM’s 8 strategies reform initiatives:
# Re-energising the private sector to lead growth,
# Developing a quality workforce and reducing dependency on foreign labour
# Creating a competitive domestic economy
# Strengthening the public sector
# Putting in place transparent and market friendly affirmative action
# Building knowledge base infrastructure
# Enhancing the sources of growth
# Ensuring sustainability
NEM’s 4 principles in eradication of poor:
# market friendly
# merit based
# needs based
New economic growth areas:
# electrical and electronic sector
# resource based industries in the palm oil
# oil and gas
# agriculture, biotechnology and life sciences
# tourism, medical tourism, eco-tourism, luxury market tourism
# high value agriculture sector
# green industries and technology
# financial services industry, Islamic financial services, capital market
# information technology industry.
NEM policies are similar to policies espoused by previous economic policies such as New Economic Policy 1970-1990, National Development Policy 1990-2000, National Vision Policy and VISION 2020.
Although the past policies have achieved certain degree of successes like creating several millionaires among the Malays, they have, however, failed to eradicate poverty among the rural people especially the Dayaks.
Today, between 80 percent and 90 percent of longhouses do not have 24-hour supply of electricity and clean water. Not to mention tar-sealed roads, even rough roads have not been built to connect longhouses with bazaars and towns.
Even the “nine buses” (nine Malaysia plans) have missed the Dayaks. So today Sarawak is still the third poorest state in Malaysia despite the fact that it has oil and gas, timber resources and coal. More than half of one million Dayaks may be categorized as hard poor if the RM720 poverty line is taken as a barometer.
NEM may have high sounding policies, but such policies will not be able to help the Dayaks. In fact NEM policies will further complement “Politics of Development” espoused by Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud, that is, taking away native customary rights land of the people and leasing them to rich and powerful cronies for the planting of oil palm and trees.
In Balai Ringin alone, some 741,000 acres of land, the bulk of which are NCR lands, are to be leased to companies linked to Taib.
In other parts of Sarawak, scores of natives have been jailed for defending their rights over land and many have sued the government for taking away their lands without their consent.
Being chased away from their land, the Dayaks will surely become poorer and poorer as they have no more land on which they can plant padi, cash crops and fruit trees through which they earn a living. Perhaps they (authorities) like the Dayaks to continue selling paku, miding (ferns), bamboo shoots, tapioca leaves and other “daun babas” (wild vegetables).
Whose fault is this that we Dayaks continue to be poor? And who should be blamed for all the miseries the Dayaks are facing now? Are Dayaks themselves and Dayak leaders to be blamed? – The Broken Shield
Wednesday, March 31
Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak on Tuesday (30 March 2010) announced the government’s new economic plan, the New Economic Model (NEM), to ensure fairer and more equitable distribution of wealth based on needs and merits.
Friday, March 26
The appointment of Adenan Satem, State Assemblyman for Tanjong Datu, as special advisor to Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud in a cabinet reshuffle on 25 March 2010 has sparked interests among the public that Adenan can be the man who is likely to replace Taib as PBB president and Chief Minister of Sarawak.
With Adenan coming back to join the administration, the public are asking: is Adenan the man who will finally take over from Taib?
He was once tipped to replace Taib, but fell out of favour with the chief minister in 2006 and since then he has been put on cold storage.
In the past Taib has eyed a number of PBB leaders who should take over from him; names such as Bujang Haji Ulis, Abang Abu Bakar, Dr. Sulaiman Daud, Effendi Norwawi and Adenan Satem are still fresh on the minds of the members. But one after the other of them has fallen by the road side.
“But now Adenan is back and it appears that Taib is grooming him to take over,” said Voon, State Assemblyman for Batu Lintang.
He had held various portfolios in the State administration including Land Development (1987-1992), Social Development (1992-1998). In 2004, he left the State cabinet and joined the Federal Cabinet as Natural Resources and Environment minister, but resigned in 2006.
Apart from Adenan, there are other senior leaders who have an equal chance to replace Taib. For example Alfred Jabu Anak Numpang, deputy president (1), Abang Johari bin Tun Openg, deputy president (11), Awang Tengah Ali Hassan, senior vice president.
“Any one of them has been mentioned by members of the party as well as the public as Taib’s possible successor. And don’t under rate Alfred Jabu,” said one of his supporters.
In fact Jabu’s supporters have been promoting him in their blogs as the next chief minister of Sarawak.
“No one can deny that Jabu has all the experience and expertise,” they said.
It is little doubt that Abang Johari who holds a MBA degree from a British university is also in line to the most powerful chief minister’s post. He has shown to be a very effective and capable minister.
Awang Tengah’s supporters have also been going around projecting him as a possible successor to Taib.
“The pressure on Taib to look for a successor has now become very urgent not only because of his health, but also because of huge stakes in the Sarawak Corridor Renewal Energy (SCORE), the 12 dams that are going to be built, the aluminum plant and the infrastructures. All these are worth billions of ringgit,” said a political observer.
With Adenan now joining the race, there are four potential candidates whom Taib can choose from.
“He must be the one Taib can trust to undertake all these projects and to help protect his family’s businesses,” the observer said.
Fatimah’s promotion is something to do with the recent PBB triennial delegates conference where she was soundly defeated in the contest for the Bumiputra wing of the PBB supreme council.
As a Taib loyalist and hard working too, Fatimah deserved to be promoted. But then, PBB has now more ministers in the cabinet- starting from Taib (Chief Minister,Minister of Finance and Minister of Planning and Resource managment), Jabu (deputy chief minister and minister of modernization of agriculture), Abang Johari (Minister of Housing and Industrial Development), Awang Tengah (minister of public utilities and second minister of planning and resource management), Michael Manyin (minister of infrastructure development), Fatimah Abdullah (minister in the chief minister’s department) and Adenan (minister without portfolio in charge of information and broadcasting).
(PBB has eight ministers), SUPP has two (George Chan, deputy chief minister and Wong Soon Koh, environment and public health minister), SPDP and PRS each has one minister (William Mawan, minister of social development and urbanisation and James Masing, minister of land development respectively).
Taib also appointed Tan Joo Phoi as assistant minister in charge of environmental matters connected to dam construction in Limbang, Baram, Baleh and Murum.
According to Dominique Ng, a PKR Sarawak adviser, by promoting Tan, Taib is trying to appease long outstanding grouses of SUPP that Taib owes them that post.
Secondly, he said Tan’s appointment may open the way for PBB to take over Padawan Municipal Council.
“It is a classic case of killing two birds with one stone. What a well targeted stone!” said Ng.
But one may ask why SPDP and PRS are not involved in the reshuffle such as increasing the number of ministerial posts or assistant ministerial posts?
But I have heard that Taib will only give a post of political secretary to each of the two parties, and I further heard that he will only accept women as political secretaries this time. – The Broken Shield
SIBU – Sarawak PKR election director Nicholas Bawin has suggested to the State government to form a special cabinet committee to assist the Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud in dealing with the issuance of provisional leases (PLs) of native customary rights lands to big companies for the planting of oil palm or trees.
“This is importance in order to avoid complications and court cases,” he said, when he addressed community and ex-community leaders at a dinner in Sibu last Sunday.
Bawin, who recently returned from London highlighting the plight of the natives in the British Parliament, was a guest speaker at the function.
“What this special committee should do is to go to the ground and call all NCR land owners to discuss with them the intention of the government to issue PLs to companies to plant oil palm.
“The land owners will be asked to identify their lands and if they agree to a JV with a company then they will sign an agreement. But if they do not agree, then their lands should be left alone.
“In this way we avoid all encumbrances such as the unnecessary court cases brought about by the land owners and the miseries caused to them,” he said, pointing out that the more than 200 cases pending in the High Court are an example.
He claimed that currently the chief minister as minister of planning and resource management made the decision himself without consulting other ministers, resulting in thousands of NCR lands being taken away by government without the consent of the people.
“What happens now is that once the lease is given to the company, the company would then destroy land owners’ longhouses, farm huts, fruit trees, cash crops and even chase them away.
“This is too much for the land owners to take, and of course they get angry and worst still they are being arrested to defend their own lands,” Bawin said.
“The chief minister has too much power vested on him and as such it can be abused,” he said and questioned why the chief minister was too generous in granting timber licences and provisional leases to well-to-do people,” he said.
Bawin also called on Dayak leaders and native headmen irrespective of their political affiliations to understand the basis of the people’s rights over land as stated clearly under section 5 of the Land Code.
“Once you understand our rights, then you can help the longhouse people to protect their NCR lands; only then you will understand why the people are angry with the government,” he stressed.
Wednesday, March 24
24 Mar 2010
KUCHING – Sarawak PKR Women chief Ibi Anak Uding has called on the government to provide electricity and clean water supply to longhouses in the Balai Ringin constituency in line with the government’s concept of ‘1Malaysia, People first and Performance now’.
“Although Snowdan Lawan, the incumbent State assemblyman has distributed some funds for minor rural development projects, there are about 80 % to 90 % of the longhouses which do not have 24-hour supply of electricity and more than 90% do not have clean water supply.
“Even few schools have no electricity and water,” Ibi said after a visit to several longhouses along Simunjan/Punda Road.
Ibi who has been visiting the constituency almost daily is a potential PKR candidate.
She said: “The lack of electricity, water and other infrastructure in the majority of the longhouses is a cause for concern. It appears that the situation in Balai Ringin contradicts Prime Minister Najib’s concept of ‘1 Malaysia, People first and Performance now’.
“For the past 46 years, the people’s needs are last and the performance later. The people here are worst than the animals where the animals are given first priority such as electricity and water at the Pig Farm near Jirok,” she lamented.
Ibi questioned why projects such as football fields were simply handed over to the people when they did not ask for them.
“This is wrong priority. What the people need is electricity and water,” she said.
On the question of NCR land issues which are very “hot” in this constituency, Ibi said the people’s two representatives, the State Assemblyman and the MP for Sri Aman Masir Kujat, are ignoring the misery and the plight of the NCR land owners.
“Where are Snowdan and Kujat and why are they keeping quiet? And why are they not fighting for the interests of the people?” asked by Ibi.
Ibi was referring to some 741,000 acres of land in the Balai Ringin area, the bulk of which are NCR lands which are owned by Ibans from 15 longhouses and Malays from one Malay kampong, have been proposed to be given to Cahya Mata Sarawak Bhd, Hock Seng Lee Bhd, Cocolin Industries Sdn Bhd, Poh Lian Plantation Sdn Bhd and Sarawak Economic Development Corporation.
The villagers have written a memorandum to the relevant authorities including UMNO seeking their intervention and they have also engaged a law firm to look into their problems.
Ibi expressed concern over the interests and livelihood of the people as they have been told to leave the area if their lands are untitled, failing which the Land and Survey Department in Kota Samarahan will initiate court actions.
She said that the farmers are adamant in staying in their own lands which have been passed to them by their ancestors and at the same time they have consulted their lawyers with a view to sue the government.
Ibi also expressed anxiety over another big oil palm plantation that has allegedly encroached into NRC lands at Ubah, Tekuyong, Abok and Empaling in the Pantu area.
“Several land owners have been arrested for defending their lands,” she added, pointing out that they have now sued the government and the company for the alleged encroachment.
The case was heard last week in the High Court in Sri Aman and further hearing will be held on 7 April.
Perkasa which is being membered by many UMNOPutras including Mahathir Mohamad believes it can do more than what UMNO can do now.
It is a pressure group.
Although the government denies any connection with it, the speed, however, in which its registration has been approved by the Home Ministry suggests otherwise.
Likewise, we Dayaks should consider forming a similar organization like Bansa Asal Dayak Sarawak or BADAS which aim is to protect Dayak interests in the economic, business, education, land and other rights that have been spelt out in the Federal Constitution.
More specifically, BADAS should protect NCR lands which are being taken away by companies for the planting of trees or oil palm. It should offer among others consultation services, posting Police bails and contacting lawyers.
Currently Sarawak Dayak Iban Association (SADIA) is doing it, but SADIA alone cannot do much without the support of other Dayak organizations and other Dayak leaders.
BADAS should not only act as a “think tank” but should also serve as a focal point of unity among the various Dayak ethnic groups.
If the government can allow the registration of PERKASA, there is no reason why BADAS cannot be registered.
Definitely, many Dayak leaders in the government will oppose this idea. There is nothing wrong in trying and convincing the government for its approval.
But the question is: who among us should be the “Ibrahim Ali” of the Dayak community? Any idea? – The Broken Shield
Monday, March 22
Under a revised Sarawak Land Code on which PKR seeks to legislate, the resolution further demands: (a) automatic land lease renewal on expiry of lease; (b) issuance of land leases of 999 years or in perpetuity, and (c) land sequestered under section 47 should be automatically released back to the land owner after two years if no public development takes place. That is the PKR Kuching division’s resolution.
Even a perimeter survey is still not good enough if our NCR lands are being leased for 60 years to oil palm plantations under a JV concept. None of the land owners will be able later on to locate which is his land.
What the government should do is to survey an individual land and issue land titles. If he passes away, at least his children can continue to own the land legally.
By the way the Minister of Natural Resources and Environment, Datuk Douglas Ugah who was briefed on 12 March on Sarawak’s Land and Survey Department at Wisma Pelita on the new land concept to develop NCR land agreed with the above suggestion - that individual lands should be surveyed and be given titles.
I was told that he was not happy with the perimeter survey alone where all the lands belonging to individuals will be lumped together. According to those who were present, Ugah asked a number of questions and the officer just could not answer.
After 60 years, can the land owners identify/locate their lands?
Assuming the present land owners who are in the region of 50 years of age or more pass away, do their children know exactly the lands owned by their parents?
And if they do not know the exact location of the lands, will the lands just disappear like that? Definitely when the 60-year agreement is due, many of the current land owners will pass away. It is for sure that the lands will also “pass away”.
If this happens, it is likely that one day the Dayaks will lose all their NCR lands to all big plantation companies. In fact, the majority of them have already lost their lands.
Is it not possible that the children and their children’s children of the current land owners find themselves as “Kampar” in their own land and as “temuai” in their own longhouses in the future?
Those who are fortunate enough and have academic qualifications may have a brighter future. But for those who are not that fortunate may find themselves scavenging for foods in towns and even sleeping in boxes or under the bridges.
I thought I read something like this already happened somewhere in Sibu and in Miri. – The Broken Shield
Sunday, March 21
“We want to call on Sarawak Deputy Chief Minister Alfred Jabu Anak Numpang to prove that he's a 'somebody' as he implies by briefing the people on his track record in defending the rights of Sabah and Sarawak under the 1963 Malaysia Agreement.
“We challenge Jabu to an open debate on the issues raised by the Common Interest Group Malaysia (Cigma) during their briefing to members of the House of Commons in London on March 9,” Jambun said in a statement emailed to The Broken Shield.
The Broken Shield had earlier published Jambun’s memorandum presented to the House Commons.
Jambun who is the deputy chairperson of Common Interest Groups (CIGMA) said: “Jabu is turning a blind eye to the serious plight of Malaysians in Sabah. Or is it more likely that he is actually ignorant about the horrendous problems faced by Sabahans because he has not been to Sabah often enough.
“Cigma's memorandum titled 'Shattered Hopes and Broken Dreams' detailed Sabah's expectations upon independence as were promised by Tunku Abdul Rahman and under the Malaysia Agreement, the Intergovernmental Committee Report and the 20 Points, the issue of state security and threats to national sovereignty.
“These included 'reverse takeovers' arising from the influx of illegal immigrants, poverty, unfair sharing of oil revenue, lack of fair benefits from land alienation to Felda and Felcra, and other socio-economic problems as a result of the unjust distribution of wealth and opportunities for Sabah from the national economic cake.
“Over the past 50 years 'various modifications and adjustments' to the Malaysia Agreement have eroded the rights and privileges of Sabahans. Forty-six years after independence, Sabah is now the poorest state despite its abundant natural resources.
“Whatever good we had received from Malaysia, it is all totally negated by the fact that we are not secure as a state and that the federal government has reaped a huge economic harvest from Sabah and returned so little to us,” he said.
Since the takeover of Umno/BN in Sabah in 1994, Sabah, he said, had been plundered to the point of becoming the poorest state in Malaysia.
“We are in such dire straits with a very uncertain future, so what is the point of praising the government? Jabu surely knows that Sarawak has had no better deal in Malaysia than Sabah.
“He must not think Sabah is in the same position as Sarawak which still has some of its original rights intact. Even Umno daren't enter Sarawak. But we in Sabah are in a much more different situation. We are under a state government which is under the directive of Kuala Lumpur.
“Brunei, which opted out of Malaysia, and Singapore which later left the federation, are in a much better economic position regionally and globally. In fact, with all the rich natural resources that we have, Sabah should be richer than Brunei.
“We reiterate that we are ready for an open debate on these issues with Jabu anytime at any venue of Jabu's choice. Let the people judge who is a 'nobody in his own country.' At the moment, the consensus of public opinion is that Jabu is a proxy and stooge of the ruling elite in Kuala Lumpur and hence a traitor to our people.
“There is nothing wrong in Cigma calling for the re-activation of the Inter-Governmental Committee on the Malaysia Agreement. The IGC was meant to be a permanent institution to monitor the Malaysia Agreement.
“Jabu must explain why the IGC has fallen into inactivity and disuse over the years. We call upon the Malaysian federal government and the governments of Sabah, Sarawak, Singapore and the UK to return to the IGC as soon as possible, failing which we will relentlessly pursue the matter further in various international forums.
“We appeal that the governments of Indonesia and the Philippines be accorded observer status at the IGC. The presence of Indonesia will ensure that the re-colonisation of Sabah and Sarawak by Malaya, after the departure of the British, is reversed. The late President Sukarno of Indonesia did warn against re-colonisation when he launched his policy of konfrantasi (confrontation) and ganjang Malaysia (hang M'sia) in 1963.
“The presence of the Philippines will ensure that we can bring the so-called Sabah claim to a closure. Following the successful briefing at the House of Commons in London on Mach 9, we intend to pursue the introduction of an EDM
(Early Day Motion) on the Malaysia Agreement in the British Parliament as soon as the forthcoming UK general elections are over.
The writer is deputy chairperson, Common Interest Group Malaysia (Cigma).
Thursday, March 18
Many still remember him as a man who had contributed in part to the course of Dayak political history and landscape that the community is experiencing now.
Coming from an aristocratic Kenyah family in Baram, young Balan was thrown into the political limelight together with Liap Kudu, Nelson Kundai Ngaring, Michael Ben, Dunstan Endawie and Edward Jeli at the time when the tide of “Dayakism” was at its height following the dismissal of Stephen Kalong Ningkan as Chief Minister of Sarawak in 1966.
Trained as a preacher for the SIB church in Australia, Balan returned to Kuching in the mid 1960s and his qualities as a leader were discovered by the leadership of Sarawak National Party (SNAP). His first taste of politics was in 1970 when Sarawak held its first direct election. He was selected for the Telang Usan constituency, one of the two Orang Ulu seats. At that time, SNAP was in the opposition after it was kicked out of the Sarawak Alliance in 1966.
In 1974 SNAP picked him again to contest the same seat, but this time more young and educated Dayaks joined him, including personalities such as Leo Moggie, Daniel Tajem, Jonathan Sabai, Dr. Jawie Masing and Joseph Samuel. All in all SNAP won 18 State seats, making it one of the strongest parties in the State.
Balan who spoke fluent English and Bahasa Malaysia and his team gave the Coalition government hell in the Dewan Undangan Negeri.
Recognising the important roles the young Dayaks in the party were going to play in the State and national politics, Prime Minister Abdul Razak invited SNAP to join the Federal and State Governments. He sent Ghazali Shafiee to meet with Dayak leaders. James Wong, who was Deputy President, was in Kemunting Camp in October 1974 following complaints by Rahman Yakub (Chief Minister) that he wanted to sell Limbang to Brunei.
Anyway after serious negotiations, on 1 November 1977 SNAP formally joined the government. Endawie who had taken over the presidency of the party was appointed Deputy Chief Minister III and Minister for Local Government. Moggie, Secretary General, MP for Kanowit and State Assemblyman for Ngemah, was appointed Minister for Welfare.
Balan Seling was appointed Assistant Minister for Agriculture and Community Development. In 1978, Moggie was appointed as a Federal Minister, while Balan Seling was promoted to full-fledged Minister for Local Government.
Endawie’s resignation as SNAP president due to differences with Moggie and Tajem opened a floodgate of troubles in the party. Both James Wong, deputy SNAP president and Moggie contested for the top post, resulting in the party splitting into two. Balan was among those who supported James Wong. The split led to the expulsion of Tajem who together with other State Assemblymen and MPs formed Parti Bansa Dayak Sarawak (PBDS) in September 1983.
Balan was then appointed as secretary general of SNAP. In the 1983 election Balan again won his seat of Telang Usan.
But in the 1987 State election, which was called early due to a political crisis famously known as the “Ming Court affair” saw Balan together with Edward Jeli, Michael Ben and Geman Itam joining PBDS which then had left the Barisan Nasional. PBDS won 15 seats and its counterpart, Parti Permas won five seats.
With 20 seats, PBDS and Permas which formed an alliance known as the Maju group failed to dislodge Taib and his government. The Maju group then tried to buy over some of the “shaky” newly elected State assemblymen; and if they could get four of them to cross there would be a tug-of-war situation.
It was rumoured that RM4 million was made available. But their efforts failed. Instead five from PBDS leaf-frogged to Barisan and SNAP, one of them was Balan Seling. The others were Edward Jeli, Michael Ben, Sora Rosah and Geman Itam.
PBDS also later lost Bolhassan (Tatau), Gramong Juna (Machan) and Mikai Mandau (Batang Ai) to PBB.
Balan, Sora and Ben joined PBB, while Edward and Geman returned to SNAP.
Balan’s defection to PBB surprised not only PBDS, but also their supporters who condemned him for his “deeds of betrayal”.
Masing, who was then PBDS publicity chief, had said that there was no way these defectors could be disciplined, adding: “It is up to the voters to discipline the defectors. Their defections were the worst of gutter politics and people change their principle, their conscience at the snap of a finger.”
“Dayaks in this country do not deserve this type of politicians as their leaders. They moved out without discussing it with their grassroots supporters. So they moved as persons, leaving behind their supporters with PBDS,” Masing had said.
After he was dropped from contesting, Balan in 1998 was then appointed as a senator for a term; and he was also appointed as chairman of the Pepper Marketing Board.
Certainly Balan’s passing will be missed by many including his political foes and has been described as a big loss to the Orang Ulu community.
Deputy Chief Minister George Chan regarded him as a leader who put his people first and always looked after the community.
“That is his strong point and that was what he had taught us. All politicians should follow his example as he is the true epitome of a political leader,” said Chan.
Assistant Minister in the Chief Minister’s Department Daud Abdul Rahman said that Balan was a strong supporter of PBB. He was a good leader. His death was a great loss not only to society, but to the party as well. He would certainly not easily to replace.
There are people who still remember him as the man who betrayed the principle and the cause he wanted to serve – the cause of the Dayaks.
Many of his followers and supporters still remember Balan’s words when he attended a function in Bintulu after the 1987 state election, when he said: “We have lost a battle, but we have not lost the war. We are ‘lanun’ (pirates) and we only retreat to sea.
“When I was in the government I climbed in my political career until I reached the top as secretary general of SNAP. But because of my conscience and my ambition for the people, I have come out to fight the people’s cause and to do this I have to start from zero in my political career, that is, just as an ordinary member of PBDS.
“I do not mind sacrificing my secretary general post in SNAP. If I can do that, I believe you all, as my supporters will also be able to bear with me. One day, we will form the government if we all have the same spirit,” he had said.*
Yet on 14 July 1987 (about three months later), he forsook his ideal for a greener pasture when he defected to PBB taking along with him his seat of Telang Usan. Until today the seat is still “owned” by PBB.
His angry supporters accused Balan Sel(l)ing Dayak Orang Ulu to PBB.
“Certainly this is a black spot in his political history,” said a veteran politician, who was his colleague in the days of Sarawak National Party.
This is a legacy that he leaves for posterity, he added.- The Broken Shield.
* Reference page 156 of THE BROKEN SHIELD – The birth of Dayakism by Joseph Tawie.
“They are going to look into our allegations and complaints,” said Nicholas Bawin, leader of Sarawak delegation.
According to Bawin, a member of the British Parliamentary Select Committees on Human Rights Virendra Sharma promised the Sabah and Sarawak delegations that the British MPs will look into the allegations.
“I will look into the allegations and bring them to a higher level,” Sharma, who is the Labour MP for Ealing, told Bawin and Daniel John Jambun of Sabah.
Bawin informed Members of the House of Commons that Sarawak agreed to join Sabah, Malaya and Singapore to the establishment of the Federation of Malaysia as equal partners when the federation was formed on 16 September 1963.
“We agreed because of the terms and conditions that were promised us,” said Bawin, when he presented a memorandum to the Commons on 9 March.
He said: “These terms and conditions which had been recorded by the Cobbold Commission Report 1962 and the Inter-Governmental Committee, 1962 had been stipulated in the 18-point Malaysia Agreement for Sarawak.
“These terms and conditions have also been included in the Federal Constitution to ensure such terms and conditions are entrenched in the Laws of the Nation.
“However, sad to say, such important promises and aspirations are forgotten when Malaysia began to grow up as a nation. Malaya became the most beneficial party to the Malaysia Agreement, while Sabah and Sarawak only received hand-outs from Kuala Lumpur, the Federal Government,” he said.
“What remains are trails of broken promises,” said Bawin, former president of Sarawak Dayak National Union (SDNU), pointing out that Malaya being the main party behind the merger and formation of Malaysia has failed to honour its promises.
“When Sabah and Sarawak agreed to set up Malaysia, they joined as equal partners with Malaya. However, due to constitutional amendment made to Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution, the position of Sabah and Sarawak has been relegated to a mere one of the 13 States of Malaysia,” he added.
On Language, Bawin said that the rigid enforcement and usage of the Malay language in schools and institutions of higher learning has invariably contributed to the decline in the standard of education in Malaysia.
“This has caused our children to suffer,” he said.
Referring to Borneonisation of the civil service, he said that the reverse process of domination by Malayan officers has taken place. Almost all top civil service are dominated by Malayan officers down to the rank and file.
He went to say that the discriminatory approach, when issuing identity cards to Sarawakians particularly the natives, has caused misery and untold deprivations to the natives, including the deprivations to their rights as citizens.
He said the special positions of the natives of Sarawak must be safeguarded especially on land ownership, fair quota in civil services including armed forces and police personnel, fair access to scholarship and education and training, and fair access to licences and permits to trade and business.
“These special positions of the natives of Sarawak are almost forgotten. The natives have been systematically deprived of the ownership to their native customary rights lands. Now the government has stopped issuing land titles to native customary rights lands in preference to government driven and controlled land development schemes.
“Large areas of native customary rights lands have also been taken and given to big corporations to be developed into oil palm and tree planting plantations,” he said.
Bawin alleged: “The quota for the employment of natives in the service no longer applies in view of the flooding of civil service with Malayan officers as well as preference only to certain tribal groups.
“The giving of scholarships and educational grants are also very discriminatory. Children of native people are not given their dues when it comes to the award of scholarship and educational grants.
“The giving of licences and permits to trade and business is also very discriminatory. It is so difficult for natives of Sarawak to get licences and permits. On the other hand, certain groups get them easily. This has encouraged the rise of corruption and bribery.”
Talking of constitutional safeguards, Bawin said that due to the political dominance of Malayan parties in Malaysia, the constitutional safeguards for Sarawak have slowly been removed. The federal system of government is slowly diminishing and Malaysia is moving towards a unitary state. In the process, Sarawak is losing many of its state rights.
“After the withdrawal of Singapore from Malaysian entity, Sarawak and Sabah lost out to Malaya because the quota in Parliament allocated to Singapore was taken up mostly by Malaya. This has caused imbalance in power which tilted towards Malaya. This also caused domination of Parliament by Malaya.
“The delineation of the parliamentary and state constituencies is also discriminatory to the natives of Sarawak. Although the Dayaks natives of Sarawak form about 50% of the State population, it is not reflected in the number of the constituencies, both parliament and stake allocated to them,” he said.
Bawin called on the British Members of Parliament to help Sarawak to relook into the Malaysia Agreement as Sarawak was once the British colony.- The Broken Shield
Tuesday, March 16
A Memorandum on the Fate of Sabah
in the Malaysian Federation
Presented by DANIEL JOHN JAMBUN, Esq.
At the House of Commons, London, the United Kingdom
First of all, I would like to record our most sincere gratitude having been given this honour of presenting this memorandum before this esteemed House. Today, marks a moment of honour for the people of Sabah, the former North Borneo, for having been accorded this rare opportunity to present a Memorandum a matter of grave significance, a matter which affect our fate as the people of the Federation of Malaysia. We see this as a historical event, a moment granted by God’s grace, in which we can communicate under this honourable roof, to reminisce a milestone of history half a century ago which was followed by sad events that in too many instances happened with numerous misgivings.
For decades now, we the people of Sabah, have been haunted by ghosts of history dating back to August 31, 1963, the day we gained independence from Great Britain. Malaysia was conceptualised and constituted with the best of promises, endearing in us hopes and dreams for a greater future. It is with sadness that I stand here to witness that what had transpired since September 16, 1963 had been a series of events that had led us to the present situation in which we can justly proclaim to be a situation of shattered hopes and broken dreams!
We therefore stand before this House, in good faith, to seek redress and to appeal for an inclusive dialogue, which we hope will lead to a clearer and brighter tomorrow to all parties concerned. I seek the indulgence of this House to hear our side of the story and adjudge the events of the past with a clear conscience and a sympathetic eye, and to lend us a hand in seeking a just and righteous solution to our problem.
I would like to present three pertinent issues, which may or may not have direct concern of the present British government. Firstly, we need to take a critical review of the rationales and instruments for the formation of Malaysia. There is the nagging question of justice in the drafting of the critical Malaysia Agreement, the efficiency and integrity off the Cobbold Commission, the reliability of the promises of the Twenty Points, the Inter governmental Committee Report and the Malaysian Act, historical documents which must be familiar to the knowledge of the Honourable Lawmakers in this House. Secondly, is the perennial issue of security which now affect the sovereignty of Sabah within Malaysia. And thirdly is the case of the spiraling deterioration in the economic wellbeing of the people of Sabah.
The facts of history is that Sabah, a former British colony, achieved its independence on August 31st, 1963. On September 16, 1963, it merged with Malaya, Singapore and Sarawak to form the Federation of Malaysia on terms agreed by all parties. The concept of merger and equal partnership was introduced by Tunku Abdul Rahman to allay fears in Sabah and Sarawak of the possibility of Malaya recolonizing them upon the departure of the British masters.
The terms of this Federation are contained in various documents such as the Twenty Points, the IGC report and of course the Malaysia Agreement, which on paper protected the interests of Sabah and Sarawak within this new Federation so that they do not lose their autonomy in certain areas of governance which gave meanings and substances to their independence.
Without doubt, this was the expressed hope of the founding fathers, principally Tunku Abdul Rahman, the first Prime Minister of Malaysia; Lee Kuan Yew, the former Prime Minister of Singapore, Donald Stephens and Mustapha Harun of Sabah, Stephen Kalong Ningkan of Sarawak, etc. Independent speeches were delivered by various leaders including Razak, Tun Mustapha, Donald Stephens and Sir William Goode to during the historic celebration of Sabah’s nationhood. I present several quotes from them below:
– Sir William Goode, outgoing Governor of North Borneo (Sabah Times, Jesselton, August 1, 1963)The Tunku naturally uttered several historic statements on the matter:
“The granting of self-government too would enable Sabah to stand on its own feet as equal with Malaya, Sarawak and Singapore.”(Sabah Times, Jesselton, August 30th, 1963)“The important aspects of the Malaysia Ideal, as I see it, is that it will enable the Borneo territories to transform their present colonial status to ‘self government’ for themselves and absolute independence in Malaysia simultaneously...”
“The days of imperialism are gone and it is not the intention of Malaya to perpetuate or revive them. When the Borneo territories become part of Malaysia, they will cease to be a colony of Malaya, they will be partners of equal status, no more or less than the other States.”
(Strait Times, October 2nd 1962)
The “other States” refer to the other States entities of Malaya, Singapore and Sarawak.
Tunku Abdul Rahman kept assuring us that Sabah was now independent; that it was no longer a colony and that Sabah will have its” absolute independence” in Malaysia. What Tunku Abdul Rahman said was exactly what we expected Sabah to gain and benefit from being part of the Federation, i.e. being a fully autonomous state within the Federation. But contrary to that promise, the reality today is that Sabah has become the 12th state of Malaya. Federal government leaders, dominated by Malayans, today can arbitrarily change, at their whims and fancies, whatever they wish to suit their needs and convenience. They even ignored the Twenty Points and the Malaysia Agreement and made it sensitive to even talk about them.
About half of Sabah’s population of 3.25 million today are foreigners. Out of this number, 750,000 are undocumented or without travel documents or work passes. Dr Chong Eng Leong paper, “Human Rights and Citizenship: Its impact on Economics, Social and Cultural Rights,” presented at the SUHAKAM Roundtable Discussion on July 31, 2006 refers.
Of these, 60,000 are categorized as refugees and about 153,000 to 418,000 are those supposedly given work passes. In addition there are those with false documents but over and above these numbers are the 600,000 who have been given genuine Malaysian identity cards or MyKads by higher authority under “Projek IC Mahathir” (Dr. Chong Eng Leong, Ibid.)
The most serious and obvious injustices inflicted upon Sabah is the deployment of non-citizen to become voters, thereby depriving citizens of the right to democracy and self-determination. The main category of foreign voters comprise the 600,000 who have been given Mykads, under “Projek IC Mahathir.” This project was widely debated in the local papers in 2006. A witness to a trial on an election dispute confessed in court to possessing a dubious identity card, telling the magistrate that he obtained his IC through “Projek President Mahathir.” This evidence was never contested, and nor has there been any denial form the former Prime Minister.
Security and Sovereignty
Most of these foreigners come from a neighbouring country (the Philippines) which, incidently, has yet to drop its territorial claim over Sabah. By the sheer number of the illegals from the Philippines alone, with their settlements surrounding all the major cities and towns, this claim could be easily legitimized. Sabah is now a haven for escaping terrorists, rebels and kidnappers. JI or Jemaah islamiyah, a terror network, has been identified as having its presence in Sabah. So is Darul Islam Sabah. Hence, with the presence of armed foreigners on our soil, Sabah is no longer a secure state.
This begs the question: Where is the security that the founding fathers of Malaysia had promised us? With the explicit support of Great Britain, we had been hard-pressed to join in the formation of Malaysia, in the name of security from Indonesia’s Confrontation and Phillippines’ claim. But as it turned out, today Brunei, which opted out following a rebellion, and Singapore which was later expelled, are doing so much better. There is therefore no denying that Brunei had been far-sighted, and Singapore had been ironically blessed by its expulsion.
As the number of non-citizens are now rapidly outnumbering the local population in some areas (Dr Jeffery Kitingan, Justice for Sabah, Table 4.1), it is merely a matter of time for this foreign population to spread and overwhelm the whole of Sabah. SUHAKAM’s former Commissioner, Prof. Hamdan Adnan, once said that a foreigner reverse takeover is imminent if the trend continues unabated.
Sabah is a rich state endowed with much natural resources such as oil and gas, timber, fertile agricultural land and tourism potentials. With a population of just about three million, Sabah offers abundant promises for vibrant economic development and enviable prosperity. Unfortunately, Sabah today is the poorest state in Malaysia (according to the government’s Malaysia Plan Report). Most of Sabah’s timber has already been harvested without any heed to sustainable supply management, and over eighty percent of the agricultural land develop for oil palm belong to corporate giants owned by west Malaysian companies. Ironically, Sabah is Malaysia’s largest oil palm producer with 60% of the nation’s palm oil being produced in Sabah. Sabah is also one of three Malaysia’s oil producing states, producing more than 73,000 barrels of crude petroleum per day. Why then is Sabah poor and financially dependent on the federal government? The answer is simple: It is either that Sabah is not getting its fair share of its own wealth or is the victim of mismanagement, or both. UNDP (United Nation Development Program) put the State poverty rate at 24.3% of the population.
Sabah, once the richest state in Malaysia, is now the poorest. Most of the poor are Natives in the rural areas, including paddy farmers, fishermen and smallholders. The state government of Sabah has one of the highest budget deficit in the country amounting RM252.89 million (2006). With a population of 3.25 million, its per capita income currently stands at RM9,536 compared to RM18,040 for Malaysia. This show a huge disparity with Sabah’s per capita income way, way below the national standard. Where do our riches go to? To be exact: to the Federal Government. Sabah can never be rich as long as our State cake” is continuously divided into thirteen.
Oil and gas belong to the state but in 1976 the federal government made the state surrender this state resource to a central government agency, PETRONAS. It is said that that the “Double Six” Tragedy (airplane crash at Sembulan which killed senior Sabah cabinet members, including the then Chief Minister Tun Fuad Stephens, the former Donald Stephens) was the result of the refusal by Stephens to sign away Sabah’s oil right in Labuan then. Soon after Tun Fuad’s funeral, Harris Salleh signed the agreement. In return the state gets only 5% of the oil revenue. Why? Why do we get only 5% of the revenue from oil, when in the first place, it is a state resource? Who gets the other 95%? How much revenue earnings have been generated from Sabah’s oil and gas, including their by-products?
Felda and Felcra
Land given out to Felda and Felcra by the State Government for the purpose of development assistance to the landless local was never implemented. According to the former Chief Minister, Harris Salleh, 300,000 hectares have been given to Felda/Felcra for this purpose. We know of no one Sabahan having benefited, although perhaps there may be a few. So who are the rest of the beneficiaries? Who is reaping the oil palm harvest from our land? Obviously, justice must be served. And these lands must revert back to the State Government and their utilisation reviewed as part of our economic revival and poverty eradication programmes.
The enormous political implications of the non-citizens currently holding citizens’ identity cards are mind boggling. It is frightening to contemplate the ramifications of the fact that they can vote, as they have been recruited and mobilised by certain political leaders in the BN (the Barisan Nasional or National Front) ruling coalition. In fact most of these “voters for hire” have been recruited as members of UMNO (the United Malay National Organisation), the backbone of the BN.
Even a fellow BN member had openly admitted that illegals could be in BN parties. Chin Su Ling, Youth Chief of the Liberal Democratic Party, a component of the BN said there is a possibility that many illegal immigrants have become members of various BN component Sabah. (Borneo Post, Tuesday, September 19th, 2006). These foreigners may just be “voters for hire” at present but once they can organize themselves, they could be in a position to control Sabah UMNO and elect their own representatives into the State Assembly and Parliament. Once this is achieved they could take over the government and change the rules of the game in their favour. This is not impossible.
How did Sabah’s population grow so fast? Are we more fertile than Sarawak or the peninsular? NO! The high growth in Sabah’s population is explained by the high arrivals of foreigners, many of whom were later exploited to become voters through the “Project IC.” Worse, these foreigners who obtained MyKads through the backdoor also claim to be Bumiputeras (sons of the soil). They are in fact The New Bumiputeras! These new “natives” are now the same number as the natives!
This large foreign population in Sabah also presents a heavy drain on the economy and social services fund. One estimate puts this cost to the State between RM271 million to RM811 million a year. They also take away from the local quota for education in schools and institutions of higher learning. They use a lot of medical facilities and health care services and encroach onto natives lands, producing squatter colonies. They also rely on low cost housing schemes provided by the government. They are also involved in drugs. According to the police, 90% of drugs are from the Philippines. They steal water and electricity through illegal connections and pollute the environment. Employment wise, many illegals are now running taxis, mini buses as drivers.
“The illegal immigrants are the mother of all problems in Sabah” – Dato
Bakri Zinin . High ranking Police Officer, Bukit Aman, Kuala Lumpur
The root cause of Sabah's dilemma is the fact that the Inter-Governmental Committee Report had failed to ensure Malaysian Government compliance with the Malaysia Agreement on a continuous basis. Various ‘modification’ and ‘adjustments’ had been surreptitiously inserted into the national governance mechanism which had trapped us into subservience and compliance and in the process eroding much of our rights and privileges.
The IGC must be revived and the United Kingdom, along with Singapore, Sarawak, Sabah and Malaya (the Federal Government), must play an active role as sympathetic and just former master to institute effective and enduring rectifications. This is the least that we can ask for. This is also the way forward. The United Kingdom is the first stop in our mission to revive the IGC. Efforts are also being made at this material time in Kuala Lumpur by Dr Jeffrey Gapari Kitingan, the chairman of the Common Interest Group Malaysia (Cigma) to seek the same redress and review of the terms of independence And formation of the Federation of Malaysia. Likewise we are mobilising a similar mission to Singapore prior to seeking a dialogue with the Sabah and Sarawak State Governments on the same issue.
With respect and reverence we lay our hopes and desires before this honourable House for a redirection of the negative trends that beset us in Borneo, in the full confidence that a vehicle to the future can be chartered for justice and truth, to pick up the pieces of the shattered hopes and broken dreams.
Monday, March 15
Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud, Deputy Chief Minister Alfred Jabu, Land Development Minister James Masing and Social Development and Urbanisation Minister William Mawan were among those present.
The programme is under the Prime Minister’s Department.
During the briefing, it is reliably learnt that Shahrizat was under fire by Taib and other leaders as her programme did not cover more areas.
Why places like Beruit and other coastal and interior areas were excluded?
They told her and her officers to travel throughout the State.
And her figure of 11,000 plus hardcore in the State caused the audience to stand up and demand an explanation.
Sarawak, being the second poorest State in Malaysia, may have over 200,000 hardcore poor out of 2.4 million people, if the poverty line of RM720 comes into account.
It is obvious that Federal Ministers need to visit Sarawak more often in order to know in depth the problems of the people, their needs and their culture.
And they should visit longhouses and villages where there are nor electricity, clean water and basic amenities.
That is why The Broken Shield did not agree with the visit of Prime Minister Najib last month to Rumah Juliana, Saratok where rooms in the longhouse are air-conditioned. Najib should have seen longhouses that are no better than cowsheds.
We hope therefore that E-kasih programme should not be turned into an election programme or become E-pilih (selected based on their political leaning). - The Broken Shield
Saturday, March 13
“Whether you are Chinese, Malays or Dayaks, you must ‘bertaubat’ (repent) from your mistakes and stop support the parties in the State Barisan Nasional government which leaders are corrupted.
“I was a leader in MCA and I was part of the corrupted BN government. Now I have repented and joined the Pakatan Rakyat,” he said at a Chinese New Year gathering organised by Sarawak PKR at its headquarters in Kuching on 11 March 2010.
Chua met PKR leaders in Miri, Bintulu and Sibu since 8 March and had also visited longhouses and villages, many of them are bereft of electricity, water and other basic amenities.
“I visited Rumah Panjang William in Miri and what surprised me is that the longhouse has no electricity and water.
“All the young men and women have gone somewhere to earn a living as they cannot work on their lands that have been robbed by the State Government,” he said.
He said: “There are rampant corruptions in the State resulting in Sarawak becoming the second poorest state in the federation of Malaysia despite the fact it has forests, gas and petroleum.
“Tidak masuk akal (no logic at all) that the State is so poor,” he said, and pointed out that one leader in Sarawak (he did not name the leader) was so rich that his money is three times as much as Robert Kuok’s od US$14.5 billion.
Kuok is reported to be richest man in South-East Asia and number 33rd in the world.
“What is the answer to all these miseries and poverty?” he asked.
“You must not support this corrupted government any more. Come election, you must support Pakatan which has promised to restore your rights including the rights of the natives over their ancestral lands.
“The Pakatan will promise to raise the oil royalty to 20%, bring development to the rural areas and raise the people’s standard of living.
“You better repent now and help yourselves to help us in the Pakatan to change the State Government,” he stressed.
Chua’s visit to Sarawak is part of PKR’s preparations for the coming State election that may be called at any time from now until July next year.
The big question is: do we want change? – The Broken Shield
Friday, March 12
The first Iban woman is Empiang Jabu of Parti Pesaka Bumiputra.
PRS President James Masing described Doris’s appointment as an honour to the Dayak women in the State.
He said: “Indeed it is an honour for PRS and Dayak women folk in the rural areas of Sarawak for Doris to be appointed as a senator.
“We would like to thank Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak and Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud for their support in putting Doris as a senator,” Masing said.
It is understood that Masing met the Prime Minister during his recent visit to Kuching and requested for a post of senator be given to his party.
The name of Doris Brodie was given to the Prime Minister who on the “spot” approved the appointment.
All parties in the State Barisan Nasional have each a candidate to be appointed as a senator. PBB has two, one to represent Parti Bumiputra and the Malay community and the other Pesaka and the Dayak community.
When Sarawak National Party (SNAP) was still in the Barisan, its allocation was always held by a non-Dayak and when Sarawak Progressive Democratic Party (SPDP) formed out of SNAP in 2002, SPDP continues the tradition of appointing a non-Dayak as a senator until today.
Parti Bansa Dayak Sarawak (PBDS) which broke away from SNAP in 1983 was not given such an allocation. Its allocation was held by SNAP.
PRS, which has replaced PBDS, is now happy that the government has finally recognised the role of the rural-based party like PRS to be allocated a senator post.
So for the first time in 46 years the Dayak community has a senator who comes from a party, other than Pesaka, that represents the Dayak community.
For this, Masing must be praised for his effort as he dares to ask the Prime Minister directly. Usually such appointment must be nominated through Taib Mahmud and Alfred Jabu. But if such an appointment is to be made through a proper channel, i.e. through Taib and Jabu, I am surely they will object it.
I was told that when Masing informed Taib about Doris’ appointment, Taib was taken aback.
Even the appointments of community leaders (Temenggong, Pemancha, Penghulu and Tuai Rumah), I am give to understand must pass through Jabu. Many Iban areas now have been waiting for community leaders, for instance, Limbang and Sarikei to name a few - all because, the nominees are not PBB supporters or members.
These are the grouses overheard by The Broken Shield.
Thursday, March 11
The strong man of Layar
By Joseph Tawie
BETONG – The Layar constituency in Betong which Alfred Jabu Anak Numpang has represented continuously for the past 35 years has seen so much progress so much so that he is so proud of his achievements that he invites Anwar Ibrahim, the Opposition leader to visit Betong to see for himself the development that has taken place.
And he also invites challengers and critics to his constituency and if they do come they better come during the day and should not wear sun glasses.
“If they come at night or if they wear sun glasses, they cannot see what developments are there in my constituency,” he said.
As PBB Deputy President and Deputy Chief Minister, Jabu has become so untouchable in the Layar Constituency, and so arrogant and egotistic that he does not tolerate any criticism to his leadership. He criticises Dayak non-governmental organisations as these organisations have little respect for him much less regard him as the “paramount chief” of the Iban community.
Since his election in 1974, there has never been any serious challenge to Jabu’s position in the constituency except during the days of the defunct Parti Bansa Dayak Sarawak especially in 1987- 1991. His first “victim” in his first outing was none other than the secretary general of Sarawak National Party and former chief minister Stephen Kalong Ningkan.
Labeled as a “giant killer” Jabu went on to strengthen his position and relentlessly and mercilessly witch-hunted SNAP’s supporters so much so that the party has become irrelevant in its own place of birth.
To further strengthen his position, he set up a network of “spies” who would report to him anyone who voted against him or spoke ill of him. Many civil servants and teachers who were known to be voting for or inclined towards Opposition were ordered to be transferred out from the district while farmers voting against him were deprived of subsidies and other financial assistance.
And candidates who contested against him would bear the brunt of his criticism and cynical remarks. Usually these candidates after handing over their nomination papers would not dare campaign; nor there any banners and posters. Many simply disappeared from the constituency.
Only candidates representing PBDS did put up a brave front and caused some ripples in Jabu’s campaigns.
One consolation for any candidate contesting against Jabu was that, despite the lack of financial resources to carry out intensive campaigns and the absence of banners and posters, was sure to obtain between 1,000 and 2,600 votes.
For example in 1987, David Impi of PBDS secured 2691 votes as against 4,416 obtained by Jabu, and in 1991, PBDS’ Frank Apau obtained 2,361 compared with Jabu’s 4,847 votes. In the 2001 and 2006 elections, SNAP’s candidates managed to secure 1171 and 1195 votes respectively.
However, in the face of silver lining, there are patches of dark clouds running at random over the Layar Constituency what with the failed Layar growth centre, where empty shophouses are part of it and the Sungai Antu agriculture research centre which has become a “white elephant”. Under this project hundred acres of land, the majority of which are owned by Jabu’s relatives, have been placed under section 47. The project “kepayang” was one of fruit trees being researched.
There are also many uncompleted road projects and unfulfilled promises. Many see all these as Jabu’s main failures.
Thus, the next election may see some change in voting pattern as there are strong under currents against his leadership particularly with the young voters who have some access to internets and are fully informed on what is going on in the constituency and issues that affect them and their families.
“There are strong under currents against his leadership. I know about it since I live in the longhouse,” said Douglas Endawie, a former bank officer.
Endawie’s finding is being shared by Eddison Eddy, a retired civil servant. He said: “A large number of people in the Layar constituency are unhappy, but they dare not express their dissatisfaction openly for fear of political backlash.
“Even villagers from my longhouse Entanak and Empaong do not dare to express their anger even though the State Government took away their land about 100 acres using section 47 of the Land Code for public purposes. No doubt compensation had been paid.
“But 50 percent of the land has been given to private and crony companies for the construction of shophouses and houses. The other 50 percent are used for public purposes such as the construction of roads, government buildings and offices.
“We should have dealt directly with the companies so that we too can make more money rather than government taking our land and paying us nominal amount. So we feel cheated,” lamented Eddy.
Eddy said that the villagers have no more land to plant cash crops and even to build houses. Eight families, he said, have to build their houses on a stream.
“We remain poor as we have no sources of incomes and that explains why you can only see the aged and the very young ones living in longhouses. The young and able people can be found in cities and towns in search of employment. Some work in coffee shops, restaurants, super markets and in the construction industry.
“Yes, there are developments, but only physical developments. And who benefit from those developments? Certainly we the people do not benefit.
“I think the people are ready for a change,” said Eddy who has been active since his retirement three years ago.
Undoubtedly, he said Jabu has brought tremendous development to Betong especially after it achieved a division status in March 2002. Among others the division saw infrastructural development, schools, technical schools and Mara Science College, office buildings, shophouses and agricultural schemes.
But who benefit from all these developments?
As Eddy said the people do not benefit from all these developments. In the construction of infrastructure, contracts have been given to Jabu’s family companies such as Tintingmas Sdn Bhd and Betong Premix Sdn Bhd.
The Tintingmas Sdn Bhd whose directors include Jabu’s son Gerald Rentap, daughter Umang Nangku and Joseph Jinggut, is currently doing road construction and completion of proposed road improvement works to Ulu Layar/Nanga Tiga road which is worth about RM50 million.
The company is working closely with its sister company Betong Premix on Federal Road Routine Maintenance works in Region 2. The road starts in Sri Aman Division and stretches across Betong Division to Sarikei Division with total kilometre coverage of over 300km.
The Betong Premix Sdn Bhd whose directors include Jabu’s daughter, Umang Nangku and Joseph Jinggut supplies premix for road constructions and road construction services and maintenance for pavement works, road furniture works, drainage and culvert works in the division.
Currently, the premix plant which has a total of 33 employees has the capacity to produce 70 tonnes of premix per hour.
In the agricultural estates, the locals refuse to work in the plantations as the wages are too meager and far below the poverty line of RM720 per month. In their place, the Indonesian workers are ever ready to be employed. The effects of engaging Indonesian workers are many, but the obvious ones are that the workers are not properly screened bringing with them social ills and diseases such as malaria and chikungunya.
In the field of education, the students attending Mara Science College are those from outside Betong including from West Malaysia.
“These are the issues that Pakatan Rakyat must be able to understand and turn them as weapons against the BN incumbent,” said Eddy who was present at a political gathering at Melayu Ili, Betong on 7 February.
Former Police Officer Stanny Embat, who hails from the longhouse, said that Jabu has no more idea to help the people of Layar constituency.
“How much has he done to help the people? After more than 35 years of his patronage, enough is enough,” said Embat, a PR potential candidate for the constituency.
“Jabu has a lot of weaknesses and failures and we need to highlight these failures to the voters and make them understand the issues,” said Tedewin Ngumbang, another potential candidate for the constituency.
“We do not condemn and attack Jabu personally; we have to use psychology to convince the people to vote against him,” he said.
But will Jabu, now in his early 70s, be contesting especially after he underwent major by-pass operations in May last year which somewhat have slowed down his political activities?
However, speculation is rife that he may be replaced by either his Senator wife, Empiang or by one of his daughters.
No doubt the people in Layar want change judging from the political gathering organised on 7 February at Melayu Ili. But can PKR harness the growing discontentment of the people in the constituency into a “weapon of destruction” even if the candidate is Jabu, his wife or his daughter? – The Broken Shield
Monday, March 8
Initially every one was encouraged to talk or raise questions. Encouraged by the atmosphere, one of the Iban delegates described the taking away of NCR land by big companies as “PL disease” (provisional lease).
Among those listening to the grouses by the delegates were Deputy Chief Minister Alfred Jabu Anak Numpang, (most powerful) Second Minister of Planning and Resources Management Awang Tengah Ali Hassan.
After the delegate described the taking away of NCR land as “PL disease”, the ministers and the organisers of the seminar did not allow the seminar participants to talk or raise questions on problems affecting the NCR land. They were only to listen to explanation from the government.
Many delegates from Kanowit, Selangau, Simanggang, Lubok Antu, Lundu, Simunjan, Bintulu and Niah wanting to know more about the “disease” were fumed with anger as they knew they were not told the truth about NCR land issues through JV.
Certainly delegates and land owners from Kanowit wanted to know why they have not been paid a single cent as dividend even though their lands have been planted with oil palm through a JV about 10 years ago.
While Jabu seemed to be quiet (according to delegates who talked to The Broken Shield), only Awang Tengah tried to explain the “PL disease” blaming the contractors appointed by the provisional lease (PL) holders for encroaching into some native customary right lands.
Have the NCR land owners been told the truth about the evil of joint venture schemes? – The Broken Shield
Sunday, March 7
The reports say that everyone who filled a form and became a member of PCM received RM10 each as an incentive.
The truth of these reports is yet to be verified. But if it is true, then PCM is perhaps the only party that I know of giving incentives to those who want to be its members. They (leaders) must be very desperate to get people to join the party.
I heard that PCM will hold a function at Villa Orang Asal at Simpang Simanggang on 27 March 2010 beginning from 10.00 a.m. Some 500 people from Batang Ai, Simanggang, Bukit Begunan and Balai Ringin will be attending the function.
Foods and drinks will be free and at the same time this will be a chance for people to earn RM10.00. After all PCM means “Parti Cari Money” and distribute such money to the people.
Meanwhile, Baru Bian, Chairman of Sarawak PKR has described PCM as the “creature” of Barisan Nasional and as such PKR will not have any electoral pact with PCM.
“How can we have any understanding with PCM, when it is the creature of Barisan Nasional, which intention is to disrupt our preparations for the coming State election”? Baru asked.
He was asked to comment on the intention of Sarawak PCM which is headed by a former PKR leader Gabriel Adit to contest as many as 40 State seats in the coming election.
Baru said that PCM had right to contest in any seat it wanted to, but he hoped the general public would know that the party was part of the Barisan Nasional’s strategy to disrupt Pakatan Rakyat to contest against the State Barisan Nasional on a one-to-one contest in the 71 constituencies.
“You remember or not that before they set up PCM, the Sarawak Chairman had lunch with the Prime Minister.
“And recently when the Prime Minister visited Sarawak, PCM leaders attired in their best dresses were at the Kuching Airport to greet him.
“It does not take a rocket scientist to know that PCM is the creation of BN and its job is to disrupt our preparations for the coming election,” he stressed. - The Broken Shield
Friday, March 5
President - Abdul Taib Mahmud
Deputy President 1 - Alfred Jabu Numpang
Deputy President 11 - Abang Johari Tun Openg
Senior Vice-President 1 - Awang Tengah Ali Hassan
Senior Vice-President 11 - Douglas Uggah Embas
Vice-Presidents - Dr. Muhd Leo Toyad
- Michael Manyin Jawong
- Abdul Wahab Aziz
- Lihan Jok
- Empiang Jabu
- Fadillah Yusof
Supreme Executive Council Members (Bumiputra) – contested
- Talib Zulpilip
- Julaihi Narawi
- Aidan Wing
- Dr. Abdul Rahman Ismail
- Mohamad Ali Mahmud
- Idris Buang
- Murni Suhaili
- Abdul Karim Hamzah
- Dr. Abang Rauf Abang Zen
- Ahmad Lai Bujang
- Dr. Wahbi Junaidi
Supreme Executive Council Members (Pesaka) – uncontested
- Gramong Juna
- James Dawos Mamit
- Roland Sagah Wee Inn
- Frederick Bayoi Manggie
- Henry Sum Agung
- Alexander Nanta Linggi
- Benedick Bujang Tembak
- Watson Bangau
- Mujah Lihan
Looking at the list of PBB Supreme Executive Council members, I am attracted to the Pesaka list of members. It appears to me that since 1973 when Pesaka merged with Bumiputra to become Parti Pesaka Bumiputra Bersatu (PBB), there has never ever been any election to this wing. (Tell me if I am wrong).
The non-contest in the Pesaka wing for the year 2010 to 2013 is a big contrast with the Bumiputra wing where there were contests for the 11 supreme council posts. And the most qualified people with the best brains have being elected.
For the Pesaka wing, members were appointed and more often than not cronies and family members are appointed as members of the supreme council to represent the Dayaks in the party. Many are mediocre. And how can Pesaka progress?
Why were there no contests? Is the Pesaka leadership scared of new faces? Or are there not enough qualified people to be members? These questions beg some answers. – The Broken Shield
Wednesday, March 3
He said that even though it was obvious that they could not enter NCL, they just bulldozed their way into the area.
He explained that land claimed as customary land would be omitted when the authorities issued PLs.
“This condition must be adhered to, and normally it is the contractors appointed by the PL holders who bulldoze, and this creates problems.
“They just bulldoze even land which come native customary rights,” he told reporters after officiating at a seminar on land and economy for Parti Pesaka Bumiputra Bersatu (PBB) delegates at the Borneo Convention Centre Kuching here on 1 March.
Tengah was asked to comment on what a delegate termed as “PL disease” during the question and answer session in the seminar.
“I urge Penghulus to ensure that the appointed contractors would ensure that land which are being claimed as NCR land would be omitted unless they (land owners) ask for the contractors for assistance,” he said.
He said that PL holders had been reminded to ensure that their appointed contractors carried out their tasks in an ethical manner.
Deputy Chief Minister Alfred Jabu was among those present.
Awang Tengah now seems to be very sympathetic towards the NCR land owners. Could be that the State election is coming and NCR land problems will be major issues in the campaigns.
But I still remember when he answered a question in Council Negeri a couple of years ago that “All untitled lands including NCR lands belong to the Government.”
He has been warning Penghulus and Tuai Rumah not to endorse any NCR land claim by the land owners otherwise they will face troubles.
Now if it is true that contractors are to be blamed for bulldozing NCR land, destroying fruit trees, cash crops, longhouses and farm houses, why are staffs of Land and Survey Department supported by the Police helping the contractors to destroy the fruit trees, cash crops and longhouses?
Why are NCR land owners being detained for defending their NCR lands? Why are the State Government and the Land and Survey Department being sued by the NCR land owners? And so far why are the NCR land owners winning their court cases against the State Government and the Land and Survey? And why is the State Government using the tax payers’ money to pay millions of ringgit worth of compensations to the land owners and to the lawyers? Why? and Why? And there are so many “whys”?
Awang Tengah is not telling the truth. In countries in Europe, South Korea and Japan, Awang should be asked to resign. Should the contractors alone be blamed? – The Broken Shield
Monday, March 1
“We don’t look for empurau. We are serious about merger,” said Peter Gani, a member of SPDP council member who together with five lawmakers and two other supreme council members last month walked out from a SPDP council meeting.
“Mawan’s remarks show that he is not interested in the merger proposal as he poked fun at our efforts,” he added.
On the proposed solidarity dinner, Gani said that Mawan could order a lot of empurau for the dinner.
“But can a large amount of empurau and crates of beer drown our problems in SPDP? Can our differences be washed away with the drinking of beer?” he asked.
Gani said that the SPDP president made a lot of promises even swearing by the light (api) and before the light went off he had already broken his promises.
“While on one hand he tries to mend fences with the renegades, he on the other hand introduces a disciplinary committee. Actually he is sharpening his daggers.
“We must beware not to stick our heads into the lion’s mouth,” he added.
Meanwhile, the five – State Assemblyman for Tasik Biru Peter Nansian, State Assemblyman for Marudi Sylvester Enteri, State Assemblyman for Batu Danau Paulus Gumbang, State Assemblywoman for Bekenu Rosey Yunus and the Mas Gading MP Dr. Tiki Lafe – met the BN secretary general Tengku Adnan soon after their return from Kapit yesterday.
According to one of the leaders, they told the BN secretary general that they would never return to the fold of SPDP as they have no more trust on the party leadership.
“The real root cause of the problem is that the president has been lying to us many times in the past.
“We cannot stand it any longer,” they told him.
In replying to a question posed by The Broken Shield regarding the solidarity dinner, Gani said: “We can forget the empurau as we prefer to go for smaller and less expensive fish, the one we can afford. Even ikan pusu is good for us.”
“You can tell SPDP leaders that we can only return if the three leaders step down,” he said, refusing to reveal the names of the three leaders.
Isn’t the shield of the SPDP going to be broken? Any bet? – The Broken Shield