Thursday, 7 January 2016
Kota Kinabalu: Former Chief Minister Datuk Yong Teck Lee said occurrence on a number of events had made 2015 tough but it may be a blessing in disguise as Sabah is becoming more resilient.
In an environment of economic downturn, he said Sabahans like most Malaysians, would have to tighten their belts further in weathering the coming year.
Be that as it may, he said out of the top 10 events that have an impact on Sabah's future, eight are positive in the long run.
"The emergence of non-party activists fighting for Sabah's rights, like Sabah Sarawak Keluar Malaysia (SSKM), the author of the book Queen's Obligations, MOSIK and other NGOs is a sure sign that ordinary Sabahans are taking up the fight for Sabah's rights.
"The sedition trial of the 'Tuaran 4' will bring forth many grievances of Sabahans. Similarly, the claim for the '40 per cent entitlement from the Federal net revenue led by a senior federal minister with activists, professionals and the local opposition, shows a non-partisan unity of fellow Sabahans fighting for Sabah.
"The coming together of Sabah local parties under the Gabungan Sabah (United Sabah Alliance) and the commemoration of Merdeka at Kundasang and Oath Stone at Keningau has struck the right chord with the people's desire to see a united Sabah opposition," he said.
Yong, who is also Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP) President, said this in his statement on Tuesday. He said the Ranau earthquake, though tragic, has displayed the heroism of ordinary Sabahans, the mountain guides, and the collective consciousness of Sabahans as the earthquake has made Sabahans more self-confident, self-reliant and proud of being Sabahans.
At the same time, he said the weakening of Malayan parties, especially the internal turmoil within Umno, and Umno-PAS co-operation will weaken Barisan Nasional (BN) in Sabah.
"Issues of the Goods and Service Tax (GST), 1MDB and financial weaknesses of Malaya have revealed to Sabahans that we have to save Sabah from Malaya.
"The demise of Pakatan Rakyat is causing the Malayan parties' influence in Sabah to wane. Racial and religious polarisation in Malaya, racial incidents like Low Yat, have eroded the confidence of Sabahans towards the Malayan model of national unity," he said.
Yong said Sarawak's reawakening as a powerful voice for Sarawak autonomy has energised Sabah's movement for autonomy.
Similarly, he said the Johor Sultan's outspokenness and unexpected hints of leaving Malaysia, makes Sabah feel no longer lonely.
Further ashore, at the United Kingdom, Yong said the victory of the Scottish National Party in defeating both the Labour Party and the ruling Conservative Party, in a parliamentary democracy similar to ours, show the people of Sabah a way forward.
"The international superpower play going on at the South China Sea will play out in the decades to come.
"Knowing China's history, China's military might is to prevent any war from breaking out in the first place. Hence, the maritime Silk Road concept and the 60 billion dollar Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank are soft strategies of China that can benefit Malaysia.
Depending on how Malaysia protects its sovereign interests, there is a silver lining in the South China Sea issue," he said on international issue that concerns the State and Malaysia.
On economic aspect, Yong said the Trans Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA), like all trade accords, will have its pros and cons for all the countries involved.
"As TPPA will open up a huge market for Sabah's palm oil, our economy and State revenues will benefit. These benefits will help offset the strengthening of the US Dollar due to the rise of US interest rates.
"Sabah has too small an industrial base and intellectual properties to be affected by TPPA. In the long run, TPPA will force the Malaysian (and Sabah) economy to be more efficient.
This is like the International Tropical Timber Agreement 1994 which had forced Sabah to adopt Sustainable Forest Management by 2000 with long term benefits.
"Although the fall of crude oil prices from 100 USD to 35 USD will affect Sabah's revenues, the drop in oil prices has eased the upward pressures on inflation," he said.
The low point for Sabah in 2015 has to be the tragic beheading of the Sarawakian tourist who was kidnapped from Sandakan, Yong said.
"The beheading brings home to Sabahans the reality of gruesome violence that we read about only in international news.
"The feared 'perfect storm', a combination of all the armed groups in the Philippines with hostile intention towards Sabah, will test our security forces to its limits," he said.
In an environment of general lawlessness, Yong said the kidnap for ransom gangs and official corruption, the failure of the peace process in Southern Philippines will undoubtedly pose serious challenges for Sabah.
"This has been admitted openly by the police. The failure of the Philippines to honour its peace agreement with Bangsamoro to pass the Bangsamoro Basic Law by this year will, as forewarned by the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), lead to terrorism and more violence. "This is already happening as amplified by the latest execution of villagers by extremist groups who mimic Middle Eastern 'fear factor' tactics.
"Furthermore, the Philippines' 'Sabah Claim' is taking centre stage in the Philippines elections campaign as high profile candidates are openly campaigning for the "Sabah Claim".
Their election results in May 2016 will have a strong bearing on our relations with the Philippines," he said. All in all, Yong said 2015 has been a tough year for Sabahans but it has a silver lining of longer term benefits arising from our growing resilience as a people.
Source: Daily Express
It is the activists in Sabah who not only led the way once on autonomy but pushed their counterparts in Sarawak into action.
KOTA KINABALU: Sabah opposition strongman Jeffery Kitingan has expressed dismay that while Sarawak has been growing increasingly vociferous on the return of Full Autonomy to the state, the Sabah Government appears to be more muted and apparently was willing to settle for the transfer of administrative management from the Federal Government.
“It was the activists in Sabah who not only led the way once on autonomy but pushed their counterparts in Sarawak into action.
“The Sarawak Government has officially recognised 22 July 1963 as Independence Day, and declared that the 1963 Federation was an equal one made up of Sabah, Sarawak and Malaya.”
Sarawak Chief Minister Adenan Satem, added Jeffrey who is also Bingkor Assemblyman and Star Sabah Chief, pushed Prime Minister Najib Abdul Razak on this matter. The latter has since agreed that the state should have its Full Autonomy returned to it. “Najib has instructed the Chief Secretary to commence talks with the Sarawak Government on the devolution of powers to the Sarawak Government.
“In Sabah, nothing of that sort is happening since the state government is controlled by Umno and other component parties in the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition are subservient.”
Sabahans, said Jeffrey, cannot look at Sarawak and take things for granted. “They need to wake up from their slumber.
“Nothing will be handed to them on a silver platter.”
Jeffrey, who is also United Borneo Front (UBF) Chairman, was announcing that the five-year-old NGO will make solidarity the buzzword in the run-up to the 14th General Election in 2018. “In Solidarity, We Shall Triumph.”
He urged MPs from Sabah and Sarawak to realise that if 11 of them now hold positions in the Federal Cabinet, it was because of the kingmaker status that their homelands have enjoyed since 2008. “The 57 MPs from Borneo decide who forms the government in Putrajaya.”
“BN’s 87 MPs from Malaya or Pakatan’s 79 MPs there cannot on their own form the Federal Government since they have less than the 112 seats needed to meet the threshold requirement.”
The Sabah lawmaker said that he agreed with Opposition Parliamentary Leader Wan Azizah Wan Ismail that the 57 MPs in Borneo, 47 of whom are from BN and 10 from the Opposition, should get together and form their own Borneo Block in Parliament. “That would be the way to get the rights of Sabah and Sarawak restored. They need to speak with one voice, and engage in one struggle for the return of Full Autonomy.”
“The people of Sabah and Sarawak have already realised that they should stand together against Putrajaya in order to win back their rights.”
Jeffrey’s Star Sabah and other local opposition parties have since formed the United Sabah Alliance (USA) with the theme, “USA menang, Sabah Sarawak senang.” (USA wins, Sabah and Sarawak will find it easier).
Source: Free Malaysia Today
Beliau juga mengaku sukar meramalkan siapa yang akan memerintah Sarawak selepas PRN yang dijangka Mac ini.
PETALING JAYA: Kerajaan Persekutuan pimpinan Perdana Menteri, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak harus dipersalahkan di atas keretakan hubungan yang berlaku antara Semenanjung dan Sarawak.
Mantan Perdana Menteri, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad berkata, senario yang berlaku sekarang seolah-olah menunjukkan Sarawak bukan sebahagian daripada Malaysia.
“Ia berpunca dari kelemahan Kerajaan Persekutuan,” katanya dalam satu wawancara eksklusif bersama FMT.
Beliau juga mengaku sukar untuk meramalkan siapa yang akan memerintah Sarawak selepas Pilihan Raya Negeri (PRN) yang dijangka pada Mac ini.
“Saya tidak tahu bagaimana pendapat orang Sarawak. Tetapi kita nampak semakin renggang, dan masing-masing bercakap pasal Sarawak. Seolah-olah Sarawak ini tidak ada dalam Malaysia kerana lebih kepada Sarawak,” ujarnya.
Jika keadaan itu berterusan, Dr Mahathir berkata, negeri-negeri lain akan mempersoalkan mengenai layanan yang diterima terhadap negeri Sarawak.
“Kalau kita macam itu, Johor pula hendak lebih untuk Johor. Jika macam itu, kita akan berpecah. Bila berpecah, negara ini akan hancur,” katanya lagi.
Sejak akhir-akhir ini, kerajaan Sarawak pimpinan Ketua Menteri, Tan Sri Adenan Satem banyak membuat keputusan yang bertentangan dengan Kerajaan Persekutuan seperti mengiktiraf Sijil Peperiksaan Bersepadu (UEC) sebagai syarat untuk berkhidmat dalam perkhidmatan awam di negeri itu.
Selain itu, Adenan enggan mengubah dasar imigresen bagi memelihara keharmonian masyarakat berbilang kaum di negeri itu selain menjadi ketua kerajaan negeri yang paling lantang mengkritik keputusan Kerajaan Persekutuan dan Najib.
Source: Free Malaysia Today