Friday, October 29

Stupid civil servants trying to bluff people!

Land Development Minister James Masing and Director of Forests Len Talif clash over the interpretation of the causes of the logjam that spread over 250 km of the Rajang River two weeks ago.

While Masing puts the blame on logging activities, much of which were carried out illegally in forests at Sungai Melatai in his constituency of Baleh, Len says the loggers should not be blamed as the causes of the logjam were due to the changing patterns of rain in the area.

Masing says heavy logging activities have caused landslides during heavy rains bringing with it logs and debris down the river right to the mighty Rajang River.

Masing wants the authorities to take stern action against companies which have been carrying out intensive logging activities in the area. According to him, this was the third incident of its kind.

In a direct challenge to Masing, Len said that logging activities in the upper reaches of Rajang River should not be blamed for the recent logjam.

“Many thought that logging was the main cause, but studies showed that it contributed minimally to the massive debris that clogged the Rajang River for several days.

“The changing pattern of rain in the area is the main culprit which has been changing in the last three years.

“According to the hydrographs report on Nanga Ga’at, the water level on October 3 at 4.48 pm was 8 metres. On October 7 at 7.00 am, the water level was 5 metres. At 9.00 pm on the same day, it rose to 11 metres.

“Through this study, we have concluded that the debris was caused by the concentration of rains within a short period,”
he said.

Most of the debris in the form of logs came from the forests of Sungai Melatai.

According to Len, the logging activities from Sungai Melatai had stopped since 2007.

Commenting on Len’s statement, Masing who is also the state assemblyman for Baleh said that the Forestry and he had a different interpretation of what has been described as “natural and man-made disaster.”

“I am not being polemical here. But it is interesting to note that where there are massive soil erosions in the upper reaches of Baleh River there are extensive logging activities.

“There are no massive erosions where there are no logging activities.

“What does this mean?” he asked.

“Let soil experts make their conclusion. I stand to be corrected on the cause of Baleh logjam issue,” said Masing, who is also the president of Parti Rakyat Sarawak.

It is obvious that Len is policing Taib’s balls at the expense of his professional integrity.

It does not take one to be a scientist to know that the debris consisting of logs and timber parts are the ones that have caused the logjam. These logs and timber parts have been piled up over the years so when heavy rains came, the logs and timber parts were washed away.

You cannot bluff all people all the time. Nowadays people are even smarter than Len Talif except that they are not given a chance to prove themselves.

What a stupid man he is!

Another “apple polisher” civil servant is divisional engineer of the department of irrigation and drainage, Ting Sing Kwong who says that the low water level of the Rajang River is due to dry weather. It is NOT due to the impoundment of the Bakun dam, he says.

Why that is all these years Rajang River has never experienced such a low water level? Why did it happen when we started to impound water into the dam? Don’t try to bluff people and make yourself look stupid in the eyes of the public.– The Broken Shield.

Monday, October 25

NGOs condemn the arrest of seven NCR land owners

SIMUNJAN: Four non-governmental organisations (NGOs) have condemned the Police for the arrest of an activist, four longhouse chiefs and villagers on Thursday (21 October) and described such action as an act of intimidation and abuse of power by the authorities.

”We in Borneo Resources Institute (BRIMAS) view the recent arrest of seven Ibans from Sebuyau as an act of intimidation by the authorities. We believe that Nicholas Mujah and the other six villagers are wrongly accused of mischief.

“This is not the first time that the indigenous communities in Sarawak are accused of committing such a crime.

“Why do the police only decide to act now when numerous police reports were lodged by the villagers against the encroachment of the logging company, and no action was taken then?”
asked Mark Bujang, BRIMAS executive director.

Bujang called on the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) to start investigating as to how the logging licence was issued to the company especially if it is true that Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud's sister, Raziah Mahmud is involved.

The Natural Resources and Environment Board (NREB) should also check whether any Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) study has been done and approved for the logging activities, said Bujang.

“We find it a bit suspicious about the burning incident when Quality Concrete logging licence is about to expire this November,” he said.

Romuald Siew, President of Jaringan Tanah Hak Adat Bangsa Asal Sarawak (TAHABAS) also condemned the arrest of the villagers.

"Our communities have been oppressed and our rights neglected and trampled upon for too long.

“This is just another example of where the rich and powerful are bullying the natives so that they can become even richer at the expense of the natives,”
he said.

"We stand in solidarity with the communities in Sebuyau, and demand that the authorities would release the seven Iban villagers immediately," said Siew.

Adrian Lasimbang, President of The Indigenous People Network of Malaysia (JAOS), while condemning the arrest, said that the non-recognition of their rights to NCR land will cause the loss of biodiversity and deforestation.

Wednesday, October 20

Machinery and quarters burnt down

SEBUYAU: Fire on Monday afternoon (18 October) destroyed a block of two storey quarters occupied by timber workers, a store, six tractors, two logging trucks, a pick up and an excavator belonging to a logging company.

Six tractors were left in the forest, while two logging trucks, a pick up and an excavator were in the camp site when they were found to have been destroyed by fire.

The destroyed properties are owned by Royal Billion Sdn Bhd, a logging contractor of Quality Concrete Holdings. Chief Minister Abdul Taib Mahmud’s sister Raziah is a director of the company.

The amount of loss is yet to be estimated.

It is not immediately known how the fire started or who were responsible for it.

The logging company, Quality Concrete Holdings, has been in the centre of dispute after the Forest Department has given it a licence to carry out logging activities in the disputed 3,305 hectares of forests which the Ibans from six longhouses claim to be their NCR land.

When negotiations failed the Ibans have also brought their case with the Police, the district and resident offices, the lands and surveys and the Forest department.

When all these failed, the natives since last Friday have erected a blockade (see picture above) to stop the workers from the Royal Billion company encroaching into their native customary rights land.

They have also stopped a "tongkang" from loading timber that has been extracted from the disputed area.

Nicholas Mujah, one of the leaders from the six Iban longhouses, said the villagers were not aware of the fire as they have been stationed at the blockade.

He said that it could be the work of arsonists who want to put the blame on the villagers.

“The villagers who put up the blockade are about four kilometres from the camp site and they were not aware what was going on in the camp.

“It (fire) must be the work of people who want to put the blame on the villagers,”
said Mujah, urging the police to carry out an immediate investigation.

Sunday, October 17

Rundi condemned

Two non-governmental organisations have slammed Assistant Minister for Public Health and Utilities Stephen Rundi for discouraging the natives from exercising their legal rights by taking their native customary rights (NCR) land disputes to court.

“The statement from Rundi shows how the state government under the current Barisan Nasional regime is not sincere about respecting and recognising the natives’ right to their customary land and resources and continue to make statements aimed to confuse the natives for their own selfish political agenda,” said Romuald Siew, president of Sarawak Native Customary Land Rights Network (Tahabas).

He was commenting on the statement by Rundi, who is the state assemblyman for Kemena that the best and the most effective way for the locals to claim Native customary rights (NCR) land is by submitting their applications to the government.

“Doing it through the courts would only benefit the lawyers,” he said, pointing out that he does not deny that the natives have rights to use the legal channels.

“But the best solution, which involves only a minimal cost would be to apply to the government,” Rundi said.

Responding to this, Siew said: “The natives have tried time and time again to get the government to recognise and respect our NCR, but most of the time the government could not be bothered.

“We have tried all the possible official channels including writing numerous letters, petitions and memorandums to get the state government to solve our land disputes and to get recognition and respect for our NCR.

"Some communities even did direct actions such as erecting blockades on their land or demonstrating peacefully, but until today, the government either ignores us or dismisses our claims,” said Siew.

Now, where can the poor community seek redress for their NCR land problems? Of course, they have no choice but to engage a lawyer in order to seek redress through the legal channel.

“It is time consuming and costly for the natives, but what choice do they have when the government not only refuses to entertain their claims but keeps on arbitrarily issuing provisional leases to the big companies over their NCR land,”
lamented Siew.

The Tahabas president said: “If the government is sincere, as a start Rundi should first look at the document titled, ‘Composite Plan Showing Distribution of Farming Land in Suai-Niah-Sibuti’ and use that as a reference to gazette the communal land boundaries of NCR areas in the Suai-Niah-Sibuti areas.”

Mark Bujang, Executive Director of Borneo Resources Institute (BRIMAS), pointed out that in the Baram District, the Brooke and British Colonial Administrations had recorded the communal land boundary of the NCR lands of the longhouses there in the ‘Register of Land Boundaries’ kept in the District Office, Marudi until today.

Mark also echoed the sentiments of TAHABAS to urge the government to also gazette the communal land boundaries immediately based on the records in the Register.

“As for areas where the communal land boundaries are yet to be recorded, the government should make its own efforts to go to the ground and assist the natives to record and gazette their boundaries,” said Mark.

Mark added: “Since the Courts have already decided that the communal land boundary of the NCR lands of the natives is based on or defined by the ‘antara’ or ‘garis menoa’ of their longhouses, the government should therefore comply with the said decisions by the Courts and immediately conduct joint ground surveys with the natives to identify and then gazette the communal land boundary of their longhouses.”

Can the government be charged for contempt of court when it (the government) refuses to comply with the court decisions? – The Broken Shield.

Saturday, October 16


How a nephew of Tun Mahathir's sees Lee Kuan Yew - MUST READ *


* The writer is a nephew of Dr Mahathir.

Singapore's Minister Mentor, Lee Kuan Yew, who was Singapore 's founding father, has always been very direct in his comments. This was the man who outsmarted the communists in Singapore (with the innocent help of Malaya then and the willing help of the British) and who later outwitted the British and outpaced Malaysia in all spheres.

Singapore practices corrupt-free meritocracy and Malaysia affirmative action. The former attracted all the best brains and the latter chased out all the brains. The Singapore cabinet consists of dedicated and intelligent technocrats whereas Malaysia has one of the most unwieldy cabinets. Not only that, brain wise it was below par not even good for the kampong.

With that kind of composition, one that is very brainy, naturally Singapore, with no natural resources could outstrip Malaysia in every aspect of development. Malaysia, on the other hand, was too much preoccupied with its Malayness and the illusory 'Ketuanan Melayu' and was also more interested in useless mega iconic development rather than real social and economic development.

Whenever Kuan Yew utters anything that deemed to be a slight on Malaysia, voices were raised admonishing him. Malaysia would never dare to face reality. That Singapore had shown that it could survive was a slap on those who believed that Singapore would fold up once it left Malaysia. Therefore it was natural that these doomsayers would try to rationalise their utterances to be in their favour to combat on whatever Kuan Yew commented. Its political jealousy.

Singapore achieved its development status without any fanfare. But here in Malaysia, a development that was deceptive was proclaimed as having achieved development status. It was trumpeted as an achievement that befits first world status. This was self delusion. Malaysians are led to believe into a make believe world, a dream world. The leaders who themselves tend to believe in their own fabricated world did not realise the people were not taken in by this kind of illusion.

Lee Kuan Yew believed in calling a spade a spade. I was there in Singapore when the People's Action Party won the elections in 1959. He was forthright in his briefing to party members as to what was expected of them and what Singapore would face in the future. Ideologically, I did not agree with him. We in the University of Malaya Socialist Club had a different interpretation of socialist reconstruction. But he was a pragmatist and wanted to bring development and welfare to the Singaporeans. Well! He succeeded.

Malaysia was so much embroiled in racial politics and due to the fear of losing political power, all actions taken by the main party in power was never targeted towards bringing wealth to all. Wealth was distributed to the chosen few only. They were the cronies and the backers of the party leadership to perpetuate their own selfish ends.

Seeing the efficiency and the progress achieved by Singapore caused the Malaysian leadership to suffer from an inferiority complex. That Malaysia should suffer from this complex was of its own making.

In a recent interview, Kuan Yew said that Malaysia could have done better if only it treated its minority Chinese and Indian population fairly. Instead they were completely marginalised and many of the best brains left the country in drove. He added that Singapore was a standing indictment to what Malaysia could have done differently. He just hit the nail right there on the head.

Malaysia recently celebrated its 50th year of independence with a bagful of uncertainties. The racial divide has become more acute. The number of Malay graduates unemployed is on the increase. And this aspect can be very explosive. But sad to see that no positive actions have been taken to address these social ills.

Various excuses were given by Malaysian leaders why Singapore had far outstripped Malaysia in all aspects of social and economic advancement. Singapore was small, they rationalised and therefore easy to manage. Singapore was not a state but merely an island.

There was one other aspect that Malaysia practises and that is to politicise all aspects of life. All government organs and machinery were 'UMNO-ised'. This was to ensure that the party will remain in power. Thus there was this misconception by the instruments of government as to what national interest is and what UMNO vested interest is.

UMNO vested interest only benefited a few and not the whole nation. But due to the UMNO-isation of the various instruments of government, the country under the present administration had equated UMNO vested interest as being that of national interest. Thus development became an avenue of making money and not for the benefit of the people. The fight against corruption took a back seat. Transparency was put on hold. And the instruments of government took it to be of national interest to cater to the vested interest of UMNO. Enforcement of various enactments and laws was selective. Thus a 'palace' in Kelang, APs cronies and close-one-eye umno MPs could exist without proper procedure. Corruption infested all govt departments, the worse is the police and lately even in the judiciary.

Singapore did not politicise its instruments of government. If ever politicisation took place, it is guided by national interest. To be efficient and to be the best in the region was of paramount importance. Thus all the elements like corruption, lackadaisical attitude towards work and other black elements, which would retard such an aim, were eliminated. Singapore naturally had placed the right priority in it's pursuit to achieve what is best for its people. This is the major difference between these two independent countries.

Malaysia in its various attempts to cover up its failures embarked on several diversions. It wanted its citizens to be proud that the country had the tallest twin-tower in the world, although the structure was designed and built by foreigners. Its now a white-elephant wasting away. It achieved in sending a man into space at an exorbitant price. For what purpose? These are what the Malays of old would say "menang sorak" (hollow victories).

It should be realised that administering a country can be likened to managing a corporate entity. If the management is efficient and dedicated and know what they are doing, the company will prosper. The reverse will be if the management is poor and bad. The company will go bust.

There are five countries around this region. There is Malaysia, and then Indonesia. To the east there is the Philippines and then there is that small enclave called the Sultanate of Brunei. All these four countries have abundance of natural resources but none can lay claim to have used all these resources to benefit the people. Poverty was rampant and independence had not brought in any significant benefits to the people.

But tiny Singapore without any resources at all managed to bring development to its citizens. It had one of the best public MRT transport systems and airlines in the world and it is a very clean city state. Their universities, health care, ports are among the best in the world.

It is impossible to compare what Singapore has achieved to what all these four countries had so far achieved. It was actually poor management and corruption, and nothing more. Everything is done for the vested interest of the few.

Malaysia, Indonesia and the Philippines and the Sultanate of Brunei need good management teams. They would not be able to do this on their own steam. I would advise that they call on Kuan Yew to show them what good governance is. Why look East to Japan when it is just next door across the causeway.

Editor's Note: The article is published the way we received it by email from another source...We do not know where it was published first.

Wednesday, October 13

Tuai Rumahs sacked

Scores of Tuai Rumahs (longhouse chiefs) and Tua kampungs (village chiefs) have been sacked after they have been found welcoming members of the opposition to their longhouses.

The latest victims are two longhouse chiefs in Sungai Poi, Kanowit, Tuai Rumah Philip Ak Amon and Tuai Rumah Sau.

Philip received the letter terminating his service effective 1 September 2010. The letter came from the office of the State Secretary (see attached letters above).

He was first given a show-cause letter following a complaint from supporters of State assemblyman for Machan Gramong Juna.

The show-cause letter dated 6 April was signed by the district officer, Kanowit, Bobbie Yamoh after he received complaints against Tuai Rumah Philip supporting the opposition members during the New Year celebrations on 25 January 2010 at his longhouse.

“According to our investigations, it has been found out by this office that the allegation was true.

“For your information, your action in supporting the opposition party is a serious offence under the Community Leaders Scheme of Service and a disciplinary action including the termination of your service as longhouse chief can be taken against you.

“You are hereby given the opportunity to give an explanation in writing within 14 days from the date of this letter,”
said the District Officer.

A similar letter was given to Tuai Rumah Sau, also of Sungai Poi, Kanowit.

Like Philip, Tuai Rumah Sau was also sacked last month.

Despite his dismissal as longhouse chief, Tuai Rumah Philip is still the longhouse chief elected by the majority of the people of his longhouse and they want him to lead them.

A pledge of support signed by 34 heads of families of the longhouse has been sent to the distract officer for his information.

Commenting on this Nicholas Mujah, secretary general of Sarawak Dayak Iban Association (SADIA) said: “Nowadays, warning and disciplinary actions against longhouse chiefs for supporting the opposition are common throughout Sarawak.

“This is particularly so when the general election is coming, but the longhouse chiefs who are elected by the longhouse folk just cannot be bothered.

“Only the longhouse chiefs appointed by the government upon recommendation by their respective assemblymen are scared.

“But the longhouse chiefs who have been elected by the longhouse folk according to Iban Adat (custom) are not afraid to welcome visitors be they from the Pakatan Rakyat or Barisan Nasional as that is their Adat to welcome them.

“And they do not mind if they do not receive allowance of RM450 per month,”
said Mujah.

Since politicians involved in the appointment of community leaders during the state election in 2006, many longhouses are not happy with the government appointees.

Some prefer their own longhouse chiefs who know the customs and traditions.

For example, Abok Pulau Batu longhouse in Sri Aman has two Tuai Rumahs: Tuai Rumah Suri Anak Nyaun was recommended by the State assemblyman for Balai Ringin Snowdan Lawan to be Tuai Rumah; and he has a few families supporting him.

And the other is Tuai Rumah Nyanggau Anak Gerang who has been elected by more than 20 families.

“We have two Tuai Rumahs, one for the government and the other for the rakyat,” said ex-councillor Augustine Mercer.

Mujah accused the government of trying to break the down longhouses into two in order for them to divide and rule the Iban community.

“It is really sad especially when the Ibans themselves are part of this policy,” he added.

Meanwhile, See Chee How, information chief of Sarawak Parti Keadilan Rakyat wants to seek a judicial review against the decision to sack the longhouse chiefs.

“Give me the names of the sacked Tuai Rumah, so that we can apply for a judicial review,” said See, who is a lawyer with Baru Bian Advocates and co. – The Broken Shield.

Sunday, October 10


Mawan says, don’t politicize the miseries and development of the Dayak.

No wonder why the Dayaks have been left far behind in terms of Development because of Dayak YBs are not supposed to speak for the people.


Mawan says PR is outsider.
Mawan says the Pakatan Rakyat – comprising of Parti Keadilan Rakyat, DAP, PAS and SNAP is outsider. Whatever does he mean by that is sheer ignorance. Is not BN comprising of UMNO, MCA, MIC, Gerakan, PBB, SPDP, PRS and SUPP is also not outsider.
BN’s big brother-bully is UMNO is from West Malaysia. So are the other 3 big brothers – MCA, MIC and Gerakan. Whatever happens in Sarawak is based on what is decided by UMNO. This is worst than his accusation of PR. PR promises to fight for the people, but Mawan, what does he fight for; definitely not the people.
He said the people’s problem and lack of development cannot be politicised – cannot be highlighted – then why is he a politician? A politician’s duty is to bring up the people’s problem.

HEAR YE ALL DAYAKS: Vote Out Mawan and all dayak BN YBs for not working for the Dayaks.

Latest Today Beras Corporation Sdn Bhd CEO- Kamaludin wants to re-brand Bario rice.

Is BN govt not satisfied enough when stealing from the people. Some years ago, Dayak Leaders have been fighting to delete the word ’Dayak’ from the Interpretation Ordinance which they succeeded in doing. Now there is no word called ‘Dayak’ in the Interpretation Ordinance. The deletion of the word Dayak from the Interpretation Ordinance had effectively removed anyone who calls himself a Dayak from being a native of Sarawak [as far as Sarawak is concerned].

But today, the importance of the word ‘Dayak’ is the pride of the native of Sarawak. Sabah natives comprising of Kadazan, Dusun, Murut can find affiliation with the Sarawak natives under the common umbrella of being Dayaks.
In Kalimantan there are more than 10 millions of natives from various ethnic who pride themselves as Dayak. Where are now the Dayak YBs who advocated for the deletion of the Dayak from the State laws. They say that Dayak means, outdated, poor, uneducated and derogatory. Who is responsible for these? It is them. They did not work hard enough to uplift the living of the Dayaks. Changing the name Dayak does not make us rich. At the end they have to wag their tails in between their legs.

Also a few years ago, some Orang Ulu leaders bloated with egos planned and acted to replace the identity of the Orang Ulu with some dubious terms called "Lun Daya". They shot themselves in the foot. The whole community came out and reprimanded them, and now Orang Ulu is still the recognized and accepted identity of we minor tribes from the deep interior. It doesn’t degrade us one bit as supposed by the kinky minded orang ulu stooges.

Now back to this rebranding of the Bario rice to Bario O’ Grain. Where did you come from and tell us what is the name of our properties. Did you know that you are insulting the intelligence of our Kelabit ancestors? Did you ask for our consent to re-brand a Kelabit word? Did you know that the United Nation is working to protect native intellectual properties? [and Bario rice is a Kelabit intellectual property; and by re-branding it will deprive us of its ownership and that is stealing of a Kelabit property?] You can even be sued in the court for stealing of intellectual property.

By proposing a new name for Bario rice, you are telling me and all the Kelabits that our ancestors were not smart enough in naming our rice. But if that is so, why do you come and try to own the rice which is the property of the Kelabits from time immemorial. Is that not part of the 1Malaysia scheme of taking away people’s rights and properties to be given to the elite few. Did you tell the Kelabit people that their rights in the Bario rice will taken away from them when it is re-named to Bario O’ Grain?



Saturday, October 9

River Disaster

Pic taken from:

This is the headline of The Star dated 8 October 2010. The story was illustrated with pictures of tonnes of logs and wood debris drifting down the mighty Rajang River near Kapit, temporarily trapping a ferry and passengers.

The Star described the phenomenon as a “major environmental disaster unfolding in the state, as kilometre after kilometre of logs and wood debris flow down the Rajang.”

It was believed that heavy rain in the upper reaches of Baleh River, a tributary of the Rajang had caused landslides at log ponds of a major timber camp and brought down the logs and wood debris.

River transport was cut off when the logs and debris started filling the entire width of the river by 4.00 pm. It was first sighted at 1.00 pm.

And by 7.30 pm the debris was reported to have reached Song and was expected to hit Sibu early in the morning.

As this was the first incident, government authorities were not prepared to deal with it.

Doomsayers connect the incident with the impoundment of Bakun Dam this Sunday, a warning to those who live down river. In future something a much bigger, even bigger than tsunami can happen.

There are those who believe that it is a curse on those timber companies who have no respect for the spirit of the jungle, the spirit of those Dayaks who have departed ages ago and the customs, traditions and taboos of the natives.

The curse has incurred losses to the timber companies in the hundreds of millions of ringgit.

As a lyric of an Iban song runs: “Sepi asai nuan, sepi asai nuan” (serve you right).- The Broken Shield

Thursday, October 7

Mawan says reject outsiders

President of Sarawak Progressive Democratic Party William Mawan Ikom was quoted by The Borneo Post on Wednesday (6 October 2010) as saying that Sarawakians should reject the opposition especially the Pakatan Rakyat which is composed of Peninsular Malaysia-based party.

The PR is made of up Democratic Action Party (DAP), Parti Keadilan Rakyat and Parti Islam Se-Malaysia (Pas). (No mention of Sarawak National Party which is also part of Pakatan Rakyat).

Mawan said even if the PR wins in the ext election, they would not be able to take care of Sarawakians as they would be looking after their own interests.

“They are outsiders, so how could they look after the interests of Sarawakians?

“The BN has proven itself all these while and continue to carry out its plan to improve the livelihood of the people,” Mawan told The Borneo Post.

The question here is: what does Mawan mean why ‘outsiders’?

If all these people are Malaysians, then Mawan is obvious that he is anti-Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak’s 1Malaysia.

Secondly, if he thinks that people from Pakatan Rakyat are “outsiders” how would he label people like Prime Minister Najib, and his Deputy Muhyiddin Yassin and UMNO ministers as outsiders?

Does he dare say that they are outsiders?

If we really apply Mawan’s definition of ‘outsiders’, then he should get rid of all the federal officers who are working here.

Many other BN leaders have also been saying this.

Don’t they speak through their noses? Or do they want to project themselves as ‘jagoh kampung’?

Think first before you speak because what you say will reflect how stupid or how clever you are.– The Broken Shield.

Monday, October 4

Destruction of Sebangan Rain Forest in Pictures

Is the destruction of this communal forest the price you pay for supporting the Barisan Nasional? If this is so, then your communal forest, "temuda-rimba", "pulau galau" will be the next. - The Broken Shield.

Friday, October 1

What a statement from a minister!

The Borneo Post dated 1 October 2010 quoted Social Development and Urbanisation Minister William Mawan Ikom advising Dayaks particularly the Ibans not to turn their hardship into a political issue.

Mawan, who is also Sarawak Progressive Democratic Party president, said hardship and joy are part of the cycle of life and almost everybody experiences them through the course of his or her life.

“If hardship is politicized by the people, then it would hinder the government’s development plans for their areas,” said the Pakan assemblyman, countering charges by certain quarters that the government was not caring enough.

“You and I will get headaches if we politicize development. There are many factors the government has to consider when distributing development fund,” he said.

What type of statement is that coming from an Iban minister? First, he said “don’t politicize hardship”. It means here don’t talk about your hardship or your problems. Don’t tell your YBs read politicians about the problems because that will tantamount to politicalisation of the problems.

I would have thought that our YBs should bring our problems to the attention of higher authorities or ministries. If he is not doing up to our expectation, then don’t vote him in, but vote him out.

Secondly the minister also told us “don’t politicize development.” What does he mean by that? Does he mean that the Ibans should not ask for development? No wonder many of the Iban constituencies lack basic infrastructure and amenities. Don’t blame the government, but our own YBs.

What do the readers think? – The Broken Shield