Sunday, July 12

Entulu under fire

THE PANEL SPEAKERS (left to right): Sidi Munan, Dr Elie Luhat, Datuk John Tenewi Nuek, Assoc. Prof. Dr Andrew Aeria (moderator), Mering Wan & Dr John Brian

Deputy Minister for rural and regional development Joseph Entulu was severely criticised at a forum today (11 July 2009) for suggesting that the term “Dayak” be dropped as its connotation was uncivilized, uncouth and low class.

The forum, should the term ‘Dayak’ be dropped, was organised by The Borneo Post in collaboration with the Sarawak Dayak National Union (SDNU).

Five panel speakers addressed some 150 participants, the majority of them were professionals, pensioners, businessmen and university students.
SDNU publicity chief Dr. John Brian Anthony said that the term “Dayak” was used anthropologically to describe the natives of Borneo.
He said: “It is sillier to suggest dropping the term ‘Dayak’. He must be drunk. Otherwise he is playing to the gallery of those who are against the term ‘Dayak’.

“It is our intention to bring all the natives together under the name of Dayak, but there are people who think that the Dayaks are threat. That is why Malaysian Dayak Congress (MDC) cannot be registered because it is considered a security threat to the nation,” he said.

SDNU which was formed in 1956 was considered as opposition organisation and because this organisation was being punished and no financial aids were given to it, he said, pointing out that the government gave funds to Dayak Bidayuh National Association (DBNA), Orang Ulu National Union (OUNA) and other NGOs in order to spite SDNU.

It seemed, he said, that Entulu was given the job of bashing the Dayak community.

Next speaker was Sidi Munan, president of Sarawak Dayak Iban Association (SADIA), who said that the dropping of term to say the least was stupid and lack of understanding of history.

“I am wondering whether it is a government proposal. It looks like it. It may be slip of the tongue, but coming from the heart,” he said.

Sidi recalled an incident in 1967 in which someone suggested that the term ‘Dayak’ be dropped.

“And there is something more than meets the eye,” he said, and warned of the legal, political and cultural implications and consequences especially in respect of I Malaysia concept.

“There will be no gawai Dayak and the Federal Constitution need to be amended. Thus it is more good than harm to retain the name in this context,” he said.

Presenting his views next was Dr. Elie Luhat, deputy president of Sarawak Dayak Graduates Association (SDGA).

He said: “If you want to get rid of the word ‘Dayak’ we are doing the work of others, that is, ‘ethnic cleansing’.

“And my advice to politicians is that if you proceed with the proposal to remove the word ‘Dayak’ you are creating problems and issues that will cause you to commit political suicide,"
Elie said.

Former Ambassador to Myanmar, Venezuela and Mexico, Datuk John Tenewi Nuek said that he was proud to be a Dayak and had never been humiliated for being so, pointing out that he traveled to several countries in his capacity as an officer of the foreign service.

He said that it was politically wise to retain the name as it provided a common umbrella for the various native groups to work and strengthen their political unity.

“Why should we change the word ‘Dayak’ which is already a brand name which gives us the best marketing strategy? Dayak is synonymous with Borneo.

“Dropping the name will be a step backward from the political, economic and cultural point of view,”
he said.

Mering Wan from the Orang Ulu community said that he was proud to be a Malaysian, and prouder still to be a Dayak.

When the forum was opened to the floor, several participants spoke against the decision to change the term ‘Dayak’. - The Broken Shied

Dr. John Brian Anthony, publicity chief of SDNU and owner of receives a memento from Mr M. Rajah of The Borneo Post


Apai Semalau said...

Entulu should be fired! Erasing our identity "Dayak" will make our ancestors roll over in their graves. For a minister to speak of it goes to show his disrespect for the whole dayak community. He should have consulted all of us dayaks, then think of the consequences before he opened his big mouth. Another recycled by-product of BN?
If he is ashamed to be a dayak he can disown it. We will respect his right but to suggest deleting "Dayak" unilaterally is an insult to us all. Like it or not, I am a proud descendant of " the sons of headhunter" and a proud dayak.
Enough said........Entulu may not want to be a dayak so come next election lets make him walk the plank and have him fired once and for all!

Banting said...

The report of the forum should be submitted to the government for record and necessary action to be taken. It would be much better and carry more weight should a dayak representative from PBB, PRS, SUPP and SPDP involved in the forum, if all dayaks irrespective of their political ideologies and differences, are serious against dropping the term `dayak`. Whoever started this controversial idea should make a public apology and let the issue be put in rest.

Anonymous said...

Look beyond who organised this function and y is Entulu singled out..? audie61 has written articles of it and there are also smses which are being kept especially those sent out by Entulu which till today are very hurtful to many of my friends. Could this be that his people are fighting back..?

Bugau said...

Joseph Entulu's comment is NOT a personal comment but rather represent PRS as a whole whether you like it or not.

No wonder PRS exited form PBDS as there is DAYAK word presented in Parti Bansa DAYAK Sarawak.

So PRS is NOT representing the DAYAK in general but only to get DAYAK VOTER for personal gain.

So the DAYAK is waiting for comments from Masing on this issue. If Masing is to take side with Entulu, this clearly shows that PRS support Entulu's comment on erasing the word DAYAK. To deny PRS not involving in JE's comment would not solve the dayak distrust in PRS political struggle.

JE is splitting those ethnic tribe in Sarawak into their own tribe. Which JE is helping others to destroy the unity of the dayak in Sarawak.


Wilfred Nissom, where do you stand on this issue?

Anonymous said...

we should know by now that some of our iban leaders are not leaders at all. leaders of other races are trying their best to help their people but our leaders are preoccupied with politicking to the extend of saying something which embarassed his own community-poor yang bahlul japanese encipilitis(JE)even ridiculed his own the people of selangau dont forget to ask yb japanese encipilitis to declare his race status come next ele ction.see if he can still win if he converted to other race identity.just talk cock.

Tbsbidayuh said...

Dear Mr. Jetty,

I did not see DBNA representative. Perhaps they are silent Dayak or "Dayak Kenyang".

That's guess so.

Anonymous said...

To Tbsbidayuh,
The DBNU is scared to attend the funtion. They were invited, but turned down. Even one Bidayuh who was supposed to be the sixth speaker pulled out in the eleventh hour.
I still remember during the Dayak agenda seminar another Bidayuh (lecturter with UNIMAS) also pulled out as a panel speaker in the last minute. So it appears, I am sorry to say, Bidayuhs generally are "takut" and are very much pro-Taib. Even their own NCR land being taken away, none of the Bidayuh leaders dares to express his feelings.

Bugau said...

To audie61,

Maybe you could share with us those 'articles & sms' please. Let that articles & sms be made public.

Anonymous said...

poor entulu....wondering why our politicians speak without think 1st...and still amaze me, why we keep electing these people to run our country?

Anonymous said...

Sidi Munan is not the right person to speak on Dayak's interest. He is the person who directly responsible for the downfall of PBDS and played an unsuccessful role to destroy PRS. Why do we Dayaks still rely on people like him? Don't we have someone who is more reasonable and responsible to fight for our cause. He should have excused himself from being the panel of speakers for as far as Dayak's interest are concerned.

Anonymous said...

Aku amat setuju nyau Ungal annymous nya Sidi nda ibuh bejako ka pasal Dayak ia nya ti ngau urang munoh Parti PBDS ia tu gila duit aja sapa arap ka ia, pui....

pengajardayakibanjulau said...

Since Entulu is ashame to be a Dayak, he should not use a Dayak name "Entulu", he should change his name to "Bintulu" which is not a Dayak name!