Sunday, May 9, 2010

Ibans Have No Reason To Be Loyal To BN

“Every time an election comes along like now, they (BN) ask us to help them but after they win they disappear. We support the BN, but the BN is not supporting us.”

Joseph Sipalan and Wong Teck Chi
May 8, 10

Limbai Semakau looks out to the Igan river, wistfully thinking of bygone days of plentiful catch and a decent income.

He beams with pride when he tells of a village fact – it is one of the few villages in Sarawak that never fears crocodile attacks.

“They don’t bother us, we don’t bother them. In the 46 years of my life, there has never been any case where someone lost a leg, or had it fractured badly or was pulled down. We can dive in the water with no fear,” he said beaming.

Recounting the village legend, Limbai explains that both villager and reptile are safe there because of a pact of mutual protection made a long time ago between their ancestors.

“It may or may not be true, but it’s a nice story,” he says, as he and a few villagers work to complete a special podium in time for a visit to the Iban village by Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Maximus J Ongkili tomorrow.

Limbai admits it stands as mere folklore, but points out that their crocodile story is one small thing the villagers can hold on to in facing their daily struggle to simply stay alive.

Fleeting dreams and drinking water

He and his family of five children, as with over 100 families living in eight longhouses in Kg Nanga Tutus, have no electricity or potable water despite being just a 45-minute boat ride away from Sibu town.

Steady employment nearby is a fleeting dream, and after the water in their Barisan-Nasional-sponsored water tanks finish, they will have to drink from the murky waters of the Igan, a large tributary of the Rajang River, until they collect enough rain water to refill their tanks.
A villager working with Limbai adds on the side that things haven’t changed all that much for them despite the many election promises of a better life.

“Every time an election comes along like now, they (BN) ask us to help them but after they win they disappear. We support the BN, but the BN is not supporting us.”

This was the same argument put forward by the tuai rumah, or headman, of one of the longhouses which was at the time hosting a visit by Communications, Culture and Arts deputy Minister Joseph Salang Gandum.

“We have supported you (BN) all this while, so we hope that you can support us.”

Limbai points out that the older generation are set in their support for BN, but sees a big shift in support among the village’s youths towards the Pakatan Rakyat.

And this is what the Pakatan is hoping to capitalise on to boost their support base among the Dayaks.

PKR election director Fuziah Salleh said the young Iban electorate are crucial to their target of getting 40 per cent of the Dayak votes in the May 16 Sibu by-election.

Indebtedness is the name of the game they are fighting against the BN, she says, on top of the alleged money politics strategy that seems to have a choke-hold on the Dayak community.

“The BN makes them feel indebted (by providing development), and if the tuai rumah says he supports one party the whole longhouse will go along with it.

“Our hope lies with the young voters, because they have broken out of that culture.”

But the challenge comes in actually getting the young voters, many of whom work either outside the state or overseas, to come back and vote, something that Fuziah admits is a major handicap for the Pakatan.

With Gawai coming only in June, she said many of the young voters would have planned their trip back to coincide with the annual Dayak harvest festival.

She suggested that the young voters reschedule their trip home to make it in time for the by-election and stayback long enough to celebrate Gawai when it officially starts on June 1.“I hope they can come back earlier.”


Richard Loh said...

When is umno going to stop lying to the people of Malaysia. 47 years and how many times have they promised development in Sarawak. Why after 47 years nothing is being done and now in a by election umno gives another promise that the Government had big plans to transform the state into a developed one. If umno is sincere, Sarawak would have been developed by now and need not have to wait for another 10 years.

Sibu voters, are you going to keep on voting umno who will not keep their promises but keep on sucking the State resources dry through their proxy in CM Taib?

Sarawak Sibu P212 By Election - Hard Talk 4

You cannot be wrong by voting PR/DAP but if you allow umno to remain in power there cannot be any bright future for Malaysia.

PR/DAP is not 100% perfect but is surely 100% better than umno. BN exist in name only, all the component parties including SUPP are just umno's puppets without any power.

Ong said...

Why not? why can't Sibu voters votting for UMNO? UMNO is the one who bring independent to Sarawak.

UMNO/BN also the one who develop Sarawak until today.

Even there's an impeccably here and there but still we've to vote for UMNO/BN..

Are you sure 100% if you vote for DAP they can give you all the good that UMNO/BN done for you today?

Even though they are not perfect but remember our beloved PM, DS Najib. What have he done to make sure we can still live in peaceful and harmomy...

For Sibu voters, lets vote for UMNO/ make sure UMNO/BN will ain in this coming PRK..

Mata Kuching said...

Two days left before Sibu voters go to the poll for the Sibu Buy Election this Sunday. Dayaks’ future are at stake because their NCR lands are at stake. Make no mistake that UMNO controlled BN will appeal up to the highest Court on all land rulings in favour of NCR landowners.

Now Dayaks have two very strong reasons not to trust UMNO controlled BN and government.

Make no mistake that it is the UMNO controlled BN and government that :-

1) appealed against the High Court ruling that it was unconstitutional to ban the use of Allah by Christians in our national language.

2) appealed against the High Court ruling that NCR landowners had the right to ownership of their land which were taken away by the BN government.

Moreover, all the money splashed by UMNO controlled BN in Sibu did not benefit the unemployed Dayaks, the neglected Dayaks, their villages and longhouses.

If the UMNO controlled BN government is sincere and caring, it would not appeal against the High Court ruling on these two important issues affecting the Christians and NCR landowners.

If the UMNO controlled BN does not withdraw the appeals by tomorrow (Friday), Dayaks must vote against BN and vote for Reform and Change initiated by Pakatan and vote for DAP.

If you have Dayak friends and relatives voting this Sunday, please inform, educate and tell them that they have now very strong and compelling reasons to vote against UMNO controlled BN and Vote for Pakatan-DAP.

Mata Kuching said...

The trump up sodomy charge against Anwar, the setting up of perkasa to propagate extremist activities, the exploitation of law enforcement agencies, the blatant flouting of rule of law and the threat of ” you help me stay in power and I help you with development” are all desperate measures by UMNO to stay in power at all cost and putting the party interest above national interest. Malaysians must take drastic measures to stem out this highly corrupted and authoritarian regime of UMNO controlled BN by giving Pakatan-DAP a decisive and convincing victory this Sunday in the Sibu Buy Election. Take all the money thatwere given to you by BN in the form of grants( for BN to avoid been charged for corrupt practices during election) for repairing your longhouses, repairing your schools, churches, temples, and whatnot. This money does not belong to UMNO controlled BN. It belong to all Malaysians and its our money.

Be happy, feel good about it and when you reach the polling station this Sunday, touch your heart and tell yourself that we shall reject this highly corrupted and authoritarian regime and vote for Pakatan-DAP to save our beloved nation. Vote Pakatan-DAP to save MALAYSIA.

Anonymous said...

To the people of Sarawak the question we should ask is :

1. Why only now promise RM 1 billion to solve the floods in Sibu ? Did BN showed any urgency to do it when there is no election ?

2. Why is BN now dishing out grants and allocations to Chinese schools ? Showed that BN is not sincere in helping these schools when there is no elections.

3. Why talk about Federal govt and state govt resolving NCR land rights now during a buy-election ? Why did't BN resolve this when thousands of natives are against it but Taib Mahmud turned a deaf ear during non election times.

4. Why give out RM 600 now during the election time ? Did they care for you when there is no by-election ?

5. Why bring in wood and cement to repair longhouses only during by-election time ? The BN is not interested in you and would not even want to entertain you when there is no election.

So, the only way is to vote Pakatan Rakyat / DAP for CHANGE.

CHANGE is what Sarawak needs to give greater prosperity to all people in Sarawak not not Taib cronies.