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Malaysia, you failed us !

By Ezra Haganez

KOTA KINABALU : United Borneo Front (UBF) chairman Jeffrey Kitingan said it is now very clear that Malaysia and successive Prime Ministers including the current one, Najib Razak, have failed Sabahans miserably as far as security and safety are concerned.

"Now that the fear felt by Sabahans have become a reality, Najib as the current premier, must not only guarantee the security of Sabahans but he must also restore their confidence because security was the number one reason why Sabahans agreed to be part of Malaysia in 1963," he said in a statement here today.
Jeffrey, who is also the Sabah chairman of State Reform Party (STAR), said so far, the Federal Government dominated by Malaya and led by UMNO/BN has not only failed miserably but has put Sabah and its citizens at perpetual risks.

"They made Sabah insecure by supporting Muslim rebellion in the Philippines and supplying them weapons, giving them refuge and training facilities in Sabah, and worst by deploying them as voters in Sabah through the ‘Project IC Mahathir’ despite knowing full well that the same group of people from the Philippines have unsettled claim over Sabah.

"Najib, who is currently in Lahad Datu, has a moral duty to put things right and restore the confidence of Sabahans.

"That is why we Sabahans supported the RCI (Royal Commission of Inquiry) as part of a necessary action to put things right. But that is not enough. A lot more needs to be done to regain the confidence of the people of Sabah who feel cheated by the Federal Government," Jeffrey said.

The maverick opposition leader also pointed out that the Prime Minister also needed to realize that Sabah belongs to the people of Sabah and is only part of Malaysia.

"Malaysia does not own Sabah as the Malaysia Agreement is yet to be implemented. Sabah is not a piece of lifeless property to be fought over between the Philippines (Sulu claim) and Malaya.

"Therefore, any talks between Malaysia/Malaya and the Philippines must include Sabah because only the people of Sabah can decide what they want. There has never been a referendum on Sabah as stated by some academicians," he said.

The so called ‘referendum’ in 1962/3 is not a referendum but only a sampling survey of less than 4% of the Sabah population, he further pointed out.

"To restore confidence, the Federal Government must clean up the mess created by Mahathir Mohamd and UMNO in Sabah.

"UMNO should leave Sabah politics to Sabahans and local political parties. In fact, the time has come to review the implementation of the Malaysia Agreement and ensure its viability and survival by addressing unhappiness of the other remaining partners – Sabah and Sarawak," he further argued.

According to Jeffrey, up till now, 49 years after Malaysia’s birth, the benefits of Malaysia have been lopsided with Malaya gaining the most while Sabah, and Sarawak too, having lost the most.

"The Sabah claim, whether valid or not, must be resolved once and for all by bringing all the relevant parties to the table within the ambit of Britain and the United Nations and find a peaceful solution," he added.

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