“Batang Ai belongs to PRS, so stay out: Masing” made the front page in THE BORNEO POST, Monday 10 November Issue, is another telling sign of a “Bully” in BN Sarawak. Parti Rakyat Sarawak(PRS) was born to destroy its parent, PBDS, when Masing quarreled with Tajem over who should took over the Party after the resignation of its elected President, Moggie. It was an instant Party, registered within 24 hours and accepted into BN at the same time just to stop any chance of PBDS return.
Now whether or not, Masing has the power and blessings to throw out that warning publicly to his “rival” in BN is yet to be seen. One astute political observer commented to this morning that he may have the blessings to fire at his rival, as such matter can be quietly settled with the Chief Minister as they are now together in a Council Negri Budget meeting. Or has “bullying within BN is so intolerable” that the President of PRS has to shout publicly the warning. He also have fired his right hand man recently, Baginda for making a statement on PRS being bullied by BN partners. To-day we learn that the threat to PRS survival is “NOT from the Opposition, but from a Barisan Nasional(BN) component member”. Imagine BN destroying the very party they have to create to destroy PBDS? What are they fighting over, I wonder? One misery state seat, called Batang Ai, which BN can afford to lose and still has two third majority to govern!
Of course, when I was in SNAP Batang AI used to be a SNAP stronghold, and in all elections prior to the split of SNAP into PBDS in 1982, PBB used to sponsor the opposition candidate. Wonder whether the threat to PRS is still PBB or SPDP which another child created by BN Sarawak to destroy SNAP? So why the infighting, is it proxy fight as to who should become Taib’s successor or is PRS, Masing faction ready to “jump” ship unless Masing gets a better deal from Taib or just a case of too much bullying within BN Sarawak? Are they just thinking as to who should take over Dublin Unting who is still in coma or as according to a reliable sources, a case of power struggle for a bigger price amongst BN leaders now?
Whatever it maybe, a “bully” is present because there is a weakling to bully. PRS is a small party with the internal problem having two factions of Masing and Sng. BN Sarawak is also a group of political parties in Sarawak where PBB was born out of three parties which were established to represent the following groups: BERJASA-a Melanau based, NEGARA- a Malay based and PESAKA-an Iban based. Through a very skillful manipulation of the Melanaus, BERJASA absolved NEGARA to become BUMIPUTRA and when adding the Malays was not enough, they absolved PESAKA to make it PBB – which is PESAKA BUMIPUTRA BERSATU. Since the Ibans are already represented by PESAKA, why should PBB need PRS or SPDP for the Iban support if PESAKA faction can deliver? Farther a united Iban party or group could be a threat to Melanau hold on to power. Three groups of Ibans, led by Masing, Mawan and the veteran Jabu, quarreling publicly over one seat, Batang Ai, will be no threat at all. But who is the Bully amongst the three and who is the weakling amongst them?
Yesterday I was taken by surprise when I was asked to give a talk to group of the people who are trying their level best to save their land from being taken by companies which has been approved by the BN-led State Government to take their land without compensation, knowledge or discussion at Kpg Sungei Limo, Lundu. These companies used threats and even gangsters as in the Ulu Niah case to deprive the natives of their Native Customary Rights(NCR) Land. BN-led Government, supported by the all named leaders had amended the Land Code to empower the Government to “STEAL” NCR land for sale to those developers. Fortunately in the test case of Rumah NOR vs Borneo Pulp, the Courts ruling expanded from just the Land cleared for farming prior to January 1st 1956 to include all other areas used by the said natives as the definition of NCR land. Unfortunately the amended Law requires the natives to show definite proof of their use and occupation the land they so claimed meaning there must be documented evidences – a HEAVY burden placed squarely on the natives.
Taking into account of the HEAVY BURDEN imposed by the Iban leaders placed on their own people over time I reminded them that for them to succeed, first they need to know their rights as citizens of an Independent Nation. After knowing those rights they must know how to protect those rights which they hold dear to their hearts or required for their survival. They must also be brave enough to depend those rights. I took a leave of rallying call from the Governor of East Kalimantan in his previous campaign for that post.
He said, “…. Jikalau BERANI, JANGAN TAKUT, TAKUT; Kalau TAKUT, TAKUT JANGAN BERANI..”. It means that if we dare to be “BRAVE, DON’T FEAR. FEAR” and if we “fear, fear DON’T BE BRAVE.”
Masing has been known as a IBAN fighter but always lasts only for a short time.. from 1987 till their surrender in 1991.. Now he wants to fight, how, when and how long. I have heard his speeches in Council Negeri but I always wonder whether he could walk the talk. Jabu on the other hand has always been loyal to his Master both in speeches and actions, but he can be very harsh to those below him especially to his Dayaks critics. He vowed “to teach me a Lesson before my sacking” in 1995 in the old Airport terminal, while we were waiting for our flight. It didn’t bother me them and it do not bother me now but I will not go back to BN as long as Jabu is there so as to be bullied again by him who does not dare to stand up for our NCR rights for one. Mawan we all know and does not need any comment…
Small wonder though, that all those who were there in Kpg Sg Limo, Lundu were “bullied” by our Chief Minister, who has the SOLE power to approve “outright sale” of State Land. I was handed yesterday also an urgent appeal from Willie Kajan, a Berawan from Long Terawan, a village in the Mulu Park National Reserve asking for help to regain their ancestral land from the Chief Minister’s sister, who was granted a full lease to their land by Land and Survey Department 2004, under Borsarmulu Resort Sdn BHD where she holds shares. Amongst the group are all the others: Kayan, Kenyah, Punan, Iban and Bidayuh whose rights have been squashed by those in power and are hoping that Courts will recognize and protect their rights to their ancestral land. Against their interests are the RICH and Powerful using “the need for Land development” as an excuse for them to have the sole monopoly of “getting rich fast” from the land deals.
To maintain and sustain their rights, all the Natives have to have the courage to fight long and hard like Tuai Rumah NOR who have fought long and hard over the last twelve years with partial victory because the Appeal Court decided against him for lack of “convincing evidence” especially when the Government Lawyer was smart enough to get one elder to sign affidavits against Nor’s Claim.
If the natives want to stop being bullied, then it is necessary for them to protect themselves politically as well.
JANGANLAH PILIH PEMIMPIN YANG BERANI TETAPI TAKUT, TAKUT, atau PEMIMPIN YANG TAKUT, TAKUT TEPI BERANI AJAR ORANG YANG MISKIN, TUA, ATAU LEMAH sahaja. Only you, yourself can stop the BULLYING.
With all your help, we also can. We can strive for a BETTER FUTURE together.