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Fasting ex-minister may stop campaign

KOTA KINABALU: A former Sabah minister who pledged to “fast to death” may consider ending his fast now that the government has begun to “show some response” to his grievances.

Conrad Mojunti, 64, the former state culture, youth and sports minister, began his fast on June 17 to draw the government’s attention to his personal and state-level concerns over religious persecution and the marginalisation of native Sabahans.

He has lost considerable amount of weight and is toying with the idea of quitting his fast now that there are “signs” that the state government will reinstate his pension which was stopped 15 months ago.

Mojuntin, who is a devout Catholic, has completely abstained from food for the last two weeks, surviving only on water and some coconut juice.

He has been receiving scores of old and new friends and members from his church at his house in Kampung Dohunsug in Penampang near here.

Speaking to FMT, Mojuntin said: “I am still meditating on it (reconsidering his fast-to-death). I should be able to decide in the evening on this crucial matter (whether) to continue fasting indefinitely. Please pray for me…”

Mojuntin is the younger brother of popular Kadazandusun leader, the late Peter Joinod Mojuntin, who perished with other Sabah ministers in a plane crash in 1976.

He staged his fast in protest against the state government’s move to marginalise genuine Sabahans, especially the Christians.

He has also been complaining about unfair distribution of state scholarships and study loans as well as opportunities for employment in the public service, claiming that the ruling Barisan Nasional had been heavily favouring Muslims, including the off-springs of illegal Muslim immigrants from the southern Philippines and Indonesia.

Mojuntin has also alleged that he had been a target of victimisation ever since he married his wife Theresa William Ali, a subject which he didn’t elaborate in his six page hand-written statement but implied that he had been a target for conversion to Islam since in the 1980s.

It is an open secret, though, that there have been family feuds and skirmishes involving him as his wife’s extended families had both Christian and Muslim members.

He was also annoyed by the growing number of illegal immigrants in Sabah who were issued with MyKads and treated better than the native Sabahans.

“God willing, all those people who conspired to give MyKads to the illegal immigrants will be exposed and brought to justice,” he said in a statement.

He also wants the truth revealed behind the tragic plane crash in 1976 which also killed then chief minister, Fuad Stephens, and other senior state cabinet members.

“Sabahans have quietly suffered to long…” Mojuntin said, adding that the failure on the part of the federal and state governments to adhere to the 20-point agreement has resulted in the sorry state of Sabahans today.

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