Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Misguided Attempt By A Sarawakian To Justify Malayan Oppression of Sarawak

Malaysian Insider

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Sarawak for Sarawakian kleptocrats – Brewin Edward Emprang

April 08, 2014

Sarawak Headhunter's comments in red.

By history, the states of Sabah and Sarawak are enjoying many privileges. Restricting people from entering the states for no sensible reason is one of them.

In reality these are not privileges but necessary provisions to avoid wholesale economic migration by Malayans and utter domination of the local populace of Sarawak and Sabah. In spite of these safeguards the Malayans have nevertheless managed to achieve a large measure of political and economic control of these nations through unwarranted political and bureaucratic manipulation as well as illegal and unconstitutional legislation (in the form of the Petroleum Development Act, through which their petroleum resources were expropriated by the Malayan Federal government without adequate recompense). 

However, there are those who still think that Sarawak should leave the Federation as the state is allegedly being treated less equal than other states in the Peninsula.

Unless the situation is redressed, there is absolutely no benefit for Sarawak to remain in the Federation. This is not merely a question of unequal treatment vis-a-vis the Malayan states, but systematic unfair and unjust treatment, and neither is this just a mere allegation.

Even the relegation of Sarawak and Sabah from independent nations (albeit former British colonies) to the status of the 13th and 14th states of the Malaysian Federation smacks of gross unfairness and injustice. There would have been no Malaysia without Sarawak and Sabah, yet these two nations found themselves completely disadvantaged and taken advantage of by the wily and more politically savvy Malayans and their assets stripped.

The Malayans, particularly the Prime Minister Tuanku Abdul Rahman, couldn't handle Singapore's demands for fair treatment, let alone take advantage of it, and so allowed it to secede (in reality booted it out of the Federation willy-nilly without consulting the other original partners in the venture, Sarawak and Sabah).   

If so, with all due respect, the question is, is secession necessary in that regard? The onus is on those people to explain that there is a need for Sarawak to secede willy-nilly from the federation.

With all due respect, YES, secession is necessary, unless justice is done with regard to Sarawak and Sabah in all matters. The onus is upon Malaya to explain why these two richest nations now have among the highest incidence of poverty and under-development, while Brunei which declined to join in Malaysia's formation and Singapore which left have now among the highest per capita incomes in the world.

When the Japanese came long before Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud became our Chief Minister, they coined the slogan “Asia for Asians” as part of their propaganda.

I do not know and never want to know about the real meaning and agenda of the “Sarawak for Sarawakians” slogan. It appears to be of the same genus with the aforesaid Japanese slogan but of a different species.

This is irrelevant to the present situation. Sarawak and Sabah are not invaders like the Japanese were then. In fact a far more insidious form of neo-colonialism by Malaya has invaded Sarawak and Sabah under false pretexts.

Therefore, it is probably being used for the same motive or sort of, however, it is just my guess.

If “Sarawak for Sarawakians” means to rule out Umno from entering Sarawak, to me, it is hand-waving, because we already have our own Umno called “PBB”.

It is this UMNo called "PBB" that has been the local instrument of the devastation of Sarawak's natural resources (whatever was left anyway, after the Malayans had siphoned off the petroleum) and the marginalization and continued impoverishment of the majority of Sarawak's people (especially the natives).

But if it means to prevent PKR, PAS, and DAP from strengthening their bases in Sarawak, it makes political sense. I genuinely believe any reasonable tyrant in Taib’s shoes would also do the same.

There is no such thing as a reasonable tyrant and such a belief is utterly misguided.

Is today’s Sarawak not for Sarawakians? Is this slogan suggesting that Sarawak is currently owned by people from Peninsula in some manner?

The ugliness of colonialism (neo or otherwise) and any form of oppression is that ownership rights are misappropriated and wrongfully exercised by the master, whether the oppressed subjects realize it or not. This is the case with the current state of the relationship of Malaya with Sarawak and Sabah, notwithstanding the outward trappings of an illusionary democracy.

Why "illusionary democracy"? An illegitimate government that is spawned by a rigged electoral system can only be described as such. It commands no legitimacy, is highly corrupt and deals with inequality, unfairness and injustice.
If I had to say that people who believe Sarawak is being plundered by Malaya do not understand the concept of federalism and in the dark about the separation of power between state and federal government, I would be whacked for being condescending. But those are the best words that I know if I had to describe them.

This is not just mere belief. It is actually happening, and anyone who doesn't see it is blind. Federalism is not a tool of oppression nor separation of power between the state and federal governments the modus operandi to achieve the latter.
Aside from oil and gas, matters including land and timbers are governed by the state government itself. As for oil and gas, the state is receiving 5% per annum.

The separation of power between the state and federal governments is also rendered illusory when both are ruled by the same coalition, a coalition that has come to power illegitimately.

Perhaps, some may dispute the adequacy of the amount, but if they were to take into account the very fact that Petronas belongs to the people of Malaysia including Sarawakians, and there are quite a number of Sarawakians working for the GLC, the amount to me is reasonable.

The fact that there were quite a number of Sarawakians working for the British colonial government did not make it any more right or reasonable. The fact is that Petronas is controlled by the Malayans and they deal with its resources and incomes as they see fit, and there is nothing their Sarawakian serfs can do about it.

Therefore, if there is a party to be blamed for the underdevelopment of Sarawak, it is the people of Sarawak themselves, or rather the local politicians running the state. Not the people of Malaya.

Taib and his family have been keeping Sarawak’s treasures in their house safe for so long yet those racist anti-Malayan crusaders accuse Malayans of looting the state’s timbers and land.

With arrogance and blatant nepotism, Taib transformed state-owned companies into his family-owned enterprises, and alienated state lands to his family, and granted logging concessions to himself, yet the Malayans are the culprit? 

The people of Sarawak are powerless in view of the rigged electoral and political system and are not to be blamed for the underdevelopment of Sarawak. The parasitic local politicians who manipulate them and its resources are merely tools of the Malayans in power who depend on them to keep the local populace under subjugation. In return the Malayans allow them to take their share of the plunder from the resources that are under their control. 

It is a symbiotically parasitic relationship.

There is absolutely no issue of racism in the fight against Malayan oppression. It is a matter of principle.

Taib and his family (and cronies) are able to rape Sarawak's timber and land because of this mutually parasitic dependence. The Malayans will not take action against Taib no matter how corrupt he is because he was instrumental in handing over Sarawak's petroleum resources to them and in keeping them in power. Therefore Taib's abuse of this power of attorney does not absolve the Malayans of any of the blame since they allow such abuse. They are also still the main culprits.  

I, as a Sarawakian, in all honesty, feel ashamed of those people who vent their anger at the people of Malaya for the woeful state of the electricity, water, and roads in Sarawak.

You should feel ashamed of yourself that you are so blinded by your Malayophileness that you cannot see that the Malayans, having expropriated Sarawak's petroleum resources to do with as they please, are responsible for such woeful state by thereby denying Sarawak of much-needed funds for its own development. Taib of course is also responsible for this.

It is true that the current federal government, whose some of the ministers in fact are Sarawakians, is being quite unfair to the Borneans, for example in matter of cabotage.

But as far as the policy and good governance is concerned, secession is unnecessary. Political reform will do. – April 8, 2014.

If the Malayans will not or cannot do anything about the situation, then secession is imperative. The Malayans have no will nor desire to undertake political reform and have not shown any. The Malayan opposition, in spite of gains against the ruling regime, are still struggling mightily against a system rigged to ensure the entrenchment of oppression, inequality and injustice.

The question Sarawakians have to ask is if against all odds the Malayan opposition comes to power, will it have the political will to give back to Sarawak what rightfully belongs to it?

If not, then secession remains the only answer.

Al Tugauw
Sarawak Headhunter 

* This is the personal opinion of the writer or publication and does not necessarily represent the views of The Malaysian Insider.