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Mojuntin breaks his ‘fast-to-death’

Fasting ex-minister Conrad Mojuntin is grateful to
Chief Minister Musa Aman for reinstating his pension.
KOTA KINABALU: Sabah’s former Culture, Youth and Sports minister Conrad Mojuntin has ended his fast-to-death campaign after the government ‘showed indications’ that it would re-instate his pension.

Relenting to advice from his family and Catholic priests, Mojuntin, 64, ended his fast yesterday evening with ‘honey and bread’.

Mojuntin began his fast on June 17 to draw the government’s attention to his personal and state-level concerns over religious persecution especially towards Christians and the marginalisation of native Sabahans.

In a six-page handwritten statement to FMT on June 17, Mojuntin had detailed his reasons for embarking on the ‘fast-to-death’ among them being his frustration over how hundreds of thousands of illegal immigrants and their Sabah-born offsprings had taken over Sabah to the extent that the federal government paid more attention to their needs rather than those of native Sababans and provided them scholarships, loans and jobs in the civil service.

He also claimed religious persecution and that he himself had been a target for conversion to Islam since the 1980s.

Yesterday, on the 12th day of his fast, a weak but resolute Mojuntin who had been living only on water gave in to family pleas broke his fast.

In a text message to FMT, Mojuntin, who is a devout Catholic said: “Through the advice of priests, my wife, friends and benefactors, I have decided to take honey with bread on this 12th day of my fasting, since I was told that my pension would be reinstated soon.”

Grateful to Musa

It is understood that the goverment had agreed to re-instate Mojuntin’s pension, which was one of his personal reasons he had embarked on the fast to death campaign.

The state government had stopped his pension on March 1 last year several months after he was released from a six-month imprisonment for criminal intimidation following a controversial case over the death of a fishmonger.

Believing that he was “fixed”, Mojuntin said certain parties had “conspired to wrongfully put (him) in jail”.

Mojuntin was the Moyog assemblyman and state minister during the Berjaya government which ruled from 1976 to 1985.

Mojuntin is the younger brother of revered Kadazandusun leader Peter Mojuntin who died in the controversial 1976 plane crash that took the lives of chief minister Fuad Stephens and half of the state cabinet.

In his statement yesterday, he also thanked Sabah Chief Minister, Musa Aman and the State Cabinet “for their sincere and favourable response to my earnest request”.

He also thanked his “loving” wife and all his children, his in-laws, four priests, the Carmelite nuns, Herman Luping
and Clarence Bongkos Malakun, as well as Yusof Manan and all his friends for visiting and helping him.

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