Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Change or forever be on the margins, Jeffrey tells Sabahans

Sabahans have been warned that their marginalisation will become irreversible unless they retake control of their destiny from the ruling elite in Putrajaya.

PKR's Jeffrey Kitingan, speaking at a public forum here, said insidious national policies had whittled away the guarantees that Sabahans were given when Malaysia was formed and he called on them to "take back (their) birthright".

But it is an uphill battle, he said.

The forum was part of a nationwide roadshow organised by a group of citizens calling themselves “Saya Anak Bangsa Malaysia” ( The next forum in the series will be held in Malacca on March 27.

Jeffrey, who is the PKR leader for Sabah and Sarawak, blamed Umno for much of Sabah's woes, saying it had subjected the state to divide-and-rule politics and had virtually taken over its decision-making rights.

"It is not us who decide anything," he said.

"Right now, who chooses the Chief Minister? Who appoints him? It is Kuala Lumpur. It is the Umno president.

"We are now almost like a colony because even our Chief Minister is not elected by us."

Referring to Sabah's problem with illegal immigration, he said:

"In other countries if you cross the border you can be shot, but in Malaysia if you cross the border they will offer you identity cards, the licence to vote, the Bumiputera licence.

"Right now we are in danger of a reverse takeover. We have a population of about 1.5 million. There are more foreigners than we know in the state. Half of them, about 600,000, are illegal immigrants."

He alleged that most of the illegal immigrants had been given MyKads and were already on the electoral rolls in 2000.

Jeffrey said Sabahans were new to the divide-and-rule politics of race and religion, adding that it was Umno that took it there when PBS came to power in 1985 because it could not stomach having a Christian heading the state.

courtesy of FreeMalaysiaToday

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