Monday, January 31, 2011
"Pak Turut" of Umno
It is apparent that Datuk Johnny Mositun has either not comprehend Datuk Yong Teck Lee's recent statement or chose to be ignorant of the facts presented.
It is the common belief in Sabah that PBS leaders as well as the other leaders in BN component parties may be in office, but not in power. The vehement denial by Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan as PBS President and Deputy Chief Minister that he is simply a "Pak Turut" to UMNO leadership shows his concern and fear that this sad truth be known to Sabahans. The PBS Youth police report against the Atama sketch, which incidentally was definitely a viewpoint shared by many Sabahans, reinforces this line of thought.
PBS was once undeniably a formidable opposition in Sabah until it decided to rejoin BN. The excuse given by PBS leaders then was that to effectively rid Sabah of all problems plaguing the State, one needs to be in BN. Sabahans remembers that this act of rejoining BN was rewarded with high positions in both State and Federal governments. But despite these high posts, have the problems really been solved? Have the leaders in Kuala Lumpur even bothered responding to any PBS demands in solving Sabah's problems? In fact, what has PBS achieved for the people of Sabah since rejoining BN?
The PBS President had stated during PBS 24th Congress that the PTI issue must be resolved by 2012. It is interesting to note, though, that Tan Sri Pairin stopped short of what he will do if it is not resolved by the deadline proclaimed. After the announcement of the NKRA's was made by the current PM, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak, there was uproar when the newly appointed Minister in charge of NKRA, Datuk Seri Idrus Jala admitted that the PTI issue was not listed. It was deemed not important enough to be included in the Federal government's list of priorities. As an afterthought, the setting up of a new Special Laboratory was hastily announced with the sole intention to pacify the Sabahans but alas, to date, still no results.
This "Mother of all threats" issue have been attributed by many to be the main contributing factor in Sabah's abnormal population increase in the years 1970 to 2000 from 636,431 people in 1970 to 2,449,389 in the year 2000. Or an increase of 285% compared to the nation's increase of 113% or even Sarawak's 106%. This highly irregular upsurge has meant that the indigenous natives have been displaced as the majority community in Sabah. Stories of how many natives, mainly KDMs lost ancestral lands, suffer forced evictions from forest reserves etc are becoming regular features in the news. Always proclaiming to be championing the KDM community's cause, what has PBS leaders done to assist them?
The continued silence by PBS leaders on this and other pertinent issues affecting especially the KDMs has left them feeling hopeless and abandoned. To many in the community, their being left out to dry is tantamount to an act of betrayal. The saying that "it is worse to witness a wrongful act and do nothing than the act itself" is most apt.
For the record, Datuk Yong was only a full Cabinet Minister for a period of 9 years and that was 12 years ago when compared to Tan Sri Pairin's 25 years. 2 years as the Chief Minister compared to Tan Sri Pairin's 9 years. So, it is natural for one to assume the longer one holds on to important posts, the more one is expected to achieve.
The question now of whether PBS leaders like Datuk Johnny Mositun or even Datuk Herbert Timbon Lagadan may still wish to remain as UMNO stooges or not is of little consequence. But we urge the other BN members to reflect on the facts, to fight for Sabah's autonomy and for what rightfully belongs to the people of Sabah. Edmund Burke once said that" All that is necessary for evil to triumph is that good men do nothing".
Issues such as the PTI issue may be an old issue but it is one that is close to the hearts of Sabahans. Therefore, SAPP will carry on pressing this as well as other issues until they are resolved, unlike PBS leaders like Datuk Johnny Mositun who will happily dance to any tune played by UMNO leaders. By Edward Dagul