Drastic decision needed for Sabah and Sarawak

KOTA BARU: Delegates from Sabah and Sarawak have called on PKR to make a firm decision on its role and commitment in the Borneo states, saying "this is time".

Referring to its recent success in the Sibu by-election, Paul Raja, a Dayak from Sarawak, said it was imperative that PKR take drastic steps to consolidate its place in Sarawak.
“This is the time for PKR to rise in Sarawak.

“The party already has a foothold in the peninsula. It is not rational for PKR to continue to wait for the right time to initiate change in Sabah and Sarawak,“ he said.

Raja said the Dayaks in Sarawak were enslaved by the ruling regime.
“Dayak are slaves in their own land. Their lands have been confiscated and homes destroyed.
“It’s not just happening to the Dayaks but also to the Ibans and the Muruts and Kadazans in Sabah,” he said.

He said all contracts were squandered by BN cronies, and the Dayaks were not included in mainstream development activities.

“The Dayaks are losing their faith in BN. After 50 years, fundamental issues such as identity cards for them remain a problem.

“To go to court is difficult. They can’t even ask that the issue of their native land rights be raised at the state assembly sitting,“ he said.

He said as long as BN remained in Sarawak it was not possible for Dayaks to progress.
Kingmakers

Sabah’s Dr Jurin Gunsalan urged PKR not to forget the Borneo states which were considered "kingmakers".

He said the biggest problem in Sabah was immigrants who came to the state in search of a livelihood and eventually acquired their permanent residency card and become Umno supporters.

He said since 1994 when Umno took over Sabah, the policy has been "divide-and-rule".
"History notes that Sabah has always changed hands within the BN component parties.
“However, it is not difficult for PKR to take over Sabah and move on to Putrajaya,” he said.
Gunsalan added that if PKR was indeed keen on Sabah, then it must make its presence felt there.

He said the best way was to hold the next PKR congress in Sabah.

"I also urge the PKR leaders to come down and meet the people in Sabah, only then will PKR be able to save Sabah,” he said.
30/05/10

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