Seliong anak Wau | Nov 28,
I refer to the Malaysiakini report State rep Adit's entry to boost S'wak PKR.
The almost 6,000 Iban supporters following Gabriel Adit into PKR made it to the national news. The figure may yet be verified but in the report of his speech, Adit, a four-term assemblyperson, told the crowd that his main reason for joining PKR was the ‘political castration’ of the Dayaks under the BN state government.
We castrate animals in real life. The purpose is to stop reproductive function in male animals. How do we ‘politically castrate’ people? Are Dayaks ‘politically castrated’ people?
Is Adit's statement representative of the majority of the Dayaks' sentiments? Do the Dayaks feel they are being ‘castrated’ in some ways? Adit's view may lack consensus; that is very obvious. If Adit represents the dissatisfaction of the Dayaks, there are Dayaks from only one side of the political divide.
If Adit's supporters are passionate about Dayak's rights as well as alienation, there are Dayaks who feel the present administration had been fair and generous to the Dayaks. But Adit's statement goes a step further: ‘political castration’.
If we interpret this term correctly, ‘political castration’ is the key to several issues in the state. The treatment of Dayak's land is paramount.
The Dayaks, especially the majority Ibans, feel they have been cheated and betrayed in the development of their native land. The basic questions of land titles have only been answered with all forms of excuses.
Do Dayaks really need to give up the rights to their land for development? In this land development, the Dayaks have to give up their rights to the land for a minimum of thirty years with additional option for further thirty years.
For a total of sixty years, the present generation of Dayaks would be ‘dead’. There are two dangers here; unknown boundaries and future changes in land code.
Are the terms of land development fair to the Dayaks? Many Dayaks are questioning the terms of land development. To them it's lopsided.
Firstly they signed without qualified lawyers explaining the contents. Secondly, the language of reference is English. Thirdly, rural Dayaks are not included to provide inputs to the manner of the development.
This resulted in squabbles on boundaries, fruit and rubber trees felled, encroaching into other people's land etc. More than 100 related legal cases are outstanding. Finally, many Dayaks have not received the promised returns for the development of their land.
Surprisingly, there are no huge plantation companies in Ngemah, Adit’s constituency. It is not accessible by road as yet. This poses a serious question; are Ngemah Dayaks deciding as proxies for other Dayaks? Do they speak for their fellow Dayaks from Baram, from Lubuk Antu etc?
If they do, Adit's view might be held by the majority of the Dayaks.
Dayaks are generally not interested in the national news. What happens in Selangor, Kuala Terengganu,
But they ask practical questions, like why are jobs found only in the
Firstly the riches of the state are not proportionately returned for development. Factories and industries are found only in the
They lament over destroyed wildlife, destroyed fishing grounds and muddy rivers. Dayaks complain, but nobody listens – is this the ‘castration’ Adit referred to? On the second point, Dayaks generally find it difficult to ‘infiltrate’ the civil service.
Just a test case: during the Hari Raya season, government offices virtually come to a standstill. You don't have such scenario for Chinese New Year and Gawai Dayak. We have to ask Adit if this is the ‘castration’ he referred to.
‘Political castration’ is most effective when done at young age. Are education and vocational training made more difficult to obtain for the Dayaks? We really don't know the figures. Of course in the
Did Adit refer this or did he mean things like vocational schools, matriculation, ITM and universities admission? Maybe he referred to overseas scholarships?
Again, let us ask Gabriel Adit once we see him.
There are other issues that Dayaks are generally not happy about. We must not forget that the Dayaks are not the rowdy, ungrateful specimens.
It takes a lot to offend a Dayak, but once angered, he is equally hard to pacify. Once a Dayak is suspicious, he has a very short fuse. Right now the Dayaks are generally in that mode; suspicious and on a short fuse.
‘Political castration’ is not the solution for the Dayaks. It only provides some spaces and temporary respite for the administration.
In a huge pen of goats, some males may escape castration and they would immediately fulfil their roles as the un-castrated males as soon as possible. A ha! Maybe that is the solution for the Dayaks. Do the Adit's way.
From the Free Online Dictionary:cas·trate (kstrt)