Here is an idiot who pretends to know more about Sabah and Sarawak
compared to Anwar. Maybe Anwar may not know everything about Sabah and
Sarawak but at least he has more intelligence to respect facts and
To say that Muslims only account a small majority in Sabah shows
clearly how ignorant this Joe Fernandez is.
Is 60% really a small minority? Even in 1967, the Muslims already
account for 47% of the population in Sabah, and these include the
Dusuns and Muruts, and that was when illegal chinese immigrants was in
gaining in numbers.
As to the kadazans being a large group, if you notice their features,
you should notice that they are not purely Kadazans, but most of them
have chinese relatives.
To say also that all Malays in Sarawak are Bidayuh is also utterly
nonsense. There are true Malays in Sarawak, probably earlier than
Malays in Malaya but they were small in number so intermarry with
locals. Similarly in Brunei and Sabah. He should read more academic
books on this subject.
You can also interview some of these Malays.
Anwar shouldn't unilaterally decide on Sabah, S'wak CM
| May 28, 2011
He dosen't seem to realise that people in Sabah and Sarawak prefer
their chief ministers to be elected by democratic means
De facto Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) chief Anwar Ibrahim attributes
his poor showing at the April 16 Sarawak state elections to, among
others, the idea of a Dayak chief minister.
Anwar was entertaining an online news portal's TV network earlier
this week on his monumental failures in Sarawak, as in Sabah earlier.
Like his equally naïve interviewers, he didn't seem to know whether he
was coming or going on Sarawak.
Anwar's take was that the Malays in Sarawak were put off by the idea
of a Dayak chief minister and refused to award even one seat to the
He claimed that the minority Malays, only 20 per cent of Sarawak,
accused him of promoting the idea of a Dayak chief minister at their
expense. Anwar, it appears, tried to unsuccessfully reason with them
that the Dayaks were in a majority in Sarawak and therefore the chief
minister should come from that community.
For those unfamiliar, Sarawak Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud is a
Melanau and therefore a Dayak.
The difference is that unlike the great majority of Dayaks who are
Christian if not pagan, Taib is a Muslim.
However, he has a Christian paternal grandfather and as many Christian
relatives as Muslim ones. He also avoided talking about Islam like the
plague since he knew that the Dayaks were watching him like a hawk.
Taib even blasted the recent seizure of bibles in Malay print in
Kuching as "stupid".
It was enough to secure the release of the bibles.
Interestingly, no Sarawak Malay has ever been chief minister of the
All four chief ministers so far have been Dayak, Taib and his
predecessor and maternal uncle Abdul Rahman Yakub being Muslim, and
the first two being Christians i.e.
Stephen Kalong Ningkan and Penghulu Tawi Sli, both Iban Dayaks from
the Sarawak National Party (SNAP).
The Ibans, the biggest community in Sarawak, failed as chief
ministers, because of opposition from the other Dayak communities i.e.
Bidayuh, Orang Ulu and Melanau.
The Sarawak Malays are in no position to object to a chief minister on
the grounds that he's Dayak or a non-Muslim.
To digress a little, the Sarawak Malays are in fact Bidayuh living on
the coasts of the Kuching division and Ibans along the coast of the
other division who converted to Islam.
The Brooke dynasty referred to them as Malays after the fashion of the
colonial British who used it as an umbrella term to describe various
ethnic groups in Peninsular Malaysia.
Also, it's unlikely that the Dayaks will ever support the idea of a
Sarawak Malay being chief minister of the state. If one is thrust on
them, he won't last in the tumultuous politics of Dayak country.
It's more likely that a Sarawak chief minister would continue to come
from among the non-Iban Dayaks – the creed is not in question – and
this would ensure political stability in the state. If a Sarawak Malay
wants to be chief minister he should not deny his Dayak heritage.
PKR's emphasis on a Dayak CM, in any case, led to allegation among the
Sarawak Malays that such a candidate would turn the state into a
Christian one, according to Anwar.
The de facto PKR chief is like a "bull in a china shop" raising a
preposterous non-issue. He naively treads, like all Peninsular
Malaysians, where even devils and angels dare not.
Sarawak is Anwar's second monumental blunder in Malaysian Borneo after
In Sabah, Anwar thundered that there was no way he would have Jeffrey
Kitingan as the Sabah PKR chief". Jeffrey, who has many Musli
relatives, was accused openly by Anwar of being a racist and
harbouring a hidden Christian agenda, whatever that means.
Anwar was playing politics where he should not be doing so.
Jeffrey pushed for the idea that the Sabah PKR chief should be
democratically elected by the division chiefs and not appointed by the
party headquarters (read Anwar) in Kuala Lumpur.
Anwar would have none of it and wanted a Muslim to head Sabah PKR
although the majority of the members were non-Muslim Dusun, including
Kadazan (urban Dusun), and Murut.
Anwar's excuse is that the Muslims, no doubt the illegal immigrants
with MyKads included, were now in a slight majority in Sabah.
Baru Bian seen as stooge for Anwar
He decided unilaterally that the Sabah chief minister should be
He does not seem to realise that the local Muslims in Sabah were not a
homogenous community and were further divided into Dusun Muslim –
Ranau, Bisaya and Orang Sungei, among others – Bajau, Suluk, Brunei
Malay, Irranun, Banjar, and Cocos-Keeling, among others.
In "compensation", Anwar decided also unilaterally that the chief
minister of Sarawak would be Dayak and Christian.
He went on to appoint Baru Bian, an Orang Ulu Christian, as Sarawak
No one in Sarawak accepts Baru because he was not elected but thrust
on the membership by the party headquarters (read Anwar).
That's one reason why PKR failed to interest the people of Sarawak on
Baru was seen as a proxy and stooge for Anwar and Peninsular
Jeffrey's stand in Sabah, meanwhile, was that if the division chiefs
in Sabah elected a Muslim head, so be it.
Anwar did not want to risk elections and deal with the possibility of
a non-Muslim head.
Eventually, Jeffrey left amidst accusations that he was the King of
Frogs, a label he has explained, and interested only in party posts
and positions and in being number one and chief minister.
Jeffrey's explanations that his politics was all about the people, the
issues, principles, policies and priorities, and not posts and
positions, were pooh-poohed by Anwar and drowned out by the propaganda
barrage from party headquarters.
Sabah Deputy Chief Minister Joseph Pairin Kitingan thinks that Anwar
made many promises to Jeffrey, all of which he had no intention of
keeping, made use of him to build up the party in Sabah and eventually
played him out.
If anyone is obsessed with the ethnicity and faith of the chief
ministers of Sabah and Sarawak respectively, it's politicians from
Peninsular Malaysia. They don't seem to realise that Peninsular
Malaysia – Malay, Chinese, Indian – is no political model for Sabah
The people in Sabah and Sarawak prefer the chief minister to be
elected by democratic means and decided by the respective governors in
accordance with the constitutional provisions. Any departure from this
would be an exercise in illegality, and ultimately, futility.
The current unease in Sabah over the post of chief ministeris is
wholly due to the fact that the candidate is appointed by Putrajaya
and not elected by the people in accordance with the state
Also, Sabahans are no longer willing to tolerate a situation where a
candidate stays too long in the post. The idea is that the rotation of
the Sabah chief minister's post should be continued but every five
years and not two years as previously and by election. It's not known
whether the proponents want the chief minister's post to be confined
to Umno, an unacceptable idea, or rotated among the Barisan Nasional
component parties as until 2003. The local parties want in as well.
Pakatan Rakyat, the opposition alliance, and Anwar would do well to
take heed of the thinking on the ground of the people in Sabah and
Sarawak on the post of chief minister for their respective states. PKR
should allow only elected candidates to head the party's Sabah and
In that case, Jeffrey would probably be back with PKR in a wink, the
party is yet to accept his resignation, but not so much to wrest the
post of Sabah chief. Many feel that he should play the role of elder
statesman in Sabah and Sarawak for PKR and function as a de facto
chief. Jeffrey's return to PKR may help arrest the party's declining
fortunes in Sabah and Sarawak.