Monday, March 10, 2008

No Winds of Change in the Land Beneath the Winds (4)

We can attribute BN’s clean sweep in Sabah to many electoral frauds – voting Filipinos, biased boundaries, vote-buying and postal votes. As Peninsular Malaysia has proven however, no tricks and cheats can stand when the people of all races speak vehemently as one voice....

Maybe Sabahans are just plain stupid and unteachable...

Why Sabahans, Why?

I TOLD YOU SO! There were no winds of change in the land beneath the winds.

Under normal circumstances, one would feel proud being proven right. Not this time, because there’s nothing great in being proven correct as a prophet of doom.

Despite all of PKR’s hype and boasts of winning seats and making inroads in Sabah, the reality have proven them wrong. Classic proverbs are rarely mistaken. Never count your eggs before they hatch.

Sabah was never ready for change, and probably never will, at least in my lifetime. Should any change occur in the next few years, it is the demography of Sabahland.

The poor will be poorer and the rich will be richer.The poorest will be mostly from the Kadazandusun people, the richest the BN-affiliated Chinese and the most powerful the Malays. Lastly, the most Bajau among Sabahans will be the Filipinos and Indonesians, though they speak no Bajau and hear no Bajau.

We can attribute BN’s clean sweep in Sabah to many electoral frauds – voting Filipinos, biased boundaries, vote-buying and postal votes. As Peninsular Malaysia has proven however, no tricks and cheats can stand when the people of all races speak vehemently as one voice.

Indeed, the dumb three-cornered fights between DAP and PKR in Sabah has denied the people of a few seats. Nevertheless, three-cornered fights are limited to a few seats and in general, the love for BN is still palpable among Sabahans.

In other words, there are no mitigating factors for Sabah’s continuous damnation under BN rule. It’s the voluntary choice of the local Sabahans.

Anyone who has resided in Sabah and dwelled among Sabahans would hardly disagree with the statement that they are generally pleasant and likeable, easygoing and polite. This is probably Sabahans’ strongest fortitude and weakest link.

Forever jovial, they have to a certain extent, become indifferent to the many damages that years of BN rule have inflicted upon them. Forever trusting, they have overtaken the Indians as the most gullible community in Malaysia, lapping up every word that comes from the lying liars in Barisan Nasional. Perpetually docile, they are the perfect servants to UMNO’s Ketuanan Melayu, the ideal submissive peasant in a feudalistic system. They are similar enough to eat and laugh and screw with once another but too different to unite politically under a single entity for the sake of the bigger picture and common goal.

After 50 years under the Malaysia, they have more political parties and sub-ethnic groups than ever before.

In the meantime, the UMNO goons are collaborating with Muslim Filipinos and Indonesians to establish an Islamic empire in Sabahland.

To be in Sabah as a tourist is one thing, to live and stay here is something else altogether. As a touring Peninsular Malaysian, I was impressed with Sabah and all it had to offer. As a resident, I am appalled at the state of local Sabahans and how they are such in spite of all the wealth Sabah possesses.

Some things are such because of inexorable circumstances. Malaria, tuberculosis, typhoid will always be endemic in East Malaysia. Alcoholism, smoking, promiscuous sex, poor family planning and blatant ignorance are optiona. So is the choice of government.

I can easily understand why the people of Kota Marudu, Pitas and Ranau choose to be under continued BN rule. They are the poorest folks in the whole of Sabah. Deprived of internet access and alternative media, and very uneducated to begin with, I will never expect these folks to keep abreast on issues of corruption, environmental destruction and judiciary rot. If a BN crook hands them 200 ringgit for a vote to office, I will not blame them for accepting the money and vote in a thief. What I cannot accept though is the trend of voters in well-endowed places. With adequate web access to alternative media, the people of Tawau, Sandakan and Luyang are not ignorant or deprived. They are not secluded or out of reach.

My only explanation is selfishness, greed and fear. To look out for oneself is commendable stewardship, to protect one’s own interest at the expense of others is unpardonable self-centeredness. Life is great for the people in urban areas. Life is a daily struggle for the many more rural folks.

Maybe it was not selfishness, greed and fear after all. Maybe Sabahans are just plain stupid and unteachable.

Are Sabahans really so shortsighted as to trade their future for short term stability? Are those rumors of vote-buying true? Do they really believe that the UMNO government is clean, caring and color-blind? Do they really trust that man Musa Aman? How can they continuously vote for someone like Bung Mokhtar? Can they not see that the UMNO headquarters in Sabah has overshadowed all other institutions – bigger than the biggest church, larger than the largest school?

I will never understand the people of Sabah.

What I do understand is that people always deserve the government they voted in.

I respect their democratic choices. I also reserve the right to criticize their choices and then eat humble pie if I am ever proven to be wrong.

As for now, Sabahans have sealed their doom by bucking the voting trend of Peninsular Malaysia. Because of Sabah and Sarawak, the BN was once again voted into power. Had it not been for Sabah and Sarawak, there was no way BN can call itself the government of Malaysia anymore.

Sabahans will not be spared their silly choices of a lifetime. Their support for BN will return soon enough to haunt them and their future generations.

I wouldn’t dare hope for change anytime soon in Sabah or Sarawak.

I only hope the Filipinos and Indonesians will keep their asses off the shores of Peninsular Malaysia.


Gho-st said...

Have been following your blog for some time.

Having worked in Sabah in the same field as you for the past 5 years, I heartily agree with your analysis of Sabahan mentality. Jovial and friendly they may be, but also gullible and totally oblivious to national issues.

It will take a lot to educated them. Hopefully PKR-DAP will sort out their differences within the state and work on a way to appeal themselves more to the people.

At least they can take heart from KK Parliamentary seat, where even with the split votes, DAP and PKR both beat the BN candidates. So the spirit of change is there, it just has not extend to the kampung folks, and that is what must be addressed.


CK Tan said...

im new to ur land here. will definitely

agreed. can't deny the fact that sdk fell to ldp with 170+ votes was major trick but back to the point, sabahans are reluctant to change. u were right bt their joyfulness n tidakapa-ness which drives me mad as well, as a sabahan. changes in urban seats should show in the next election if those who's accessible to the modern tech get more revealation but as far as the rural folks are concerned, the 5-yrs-once 200 bucks or 500 bucks/household still vivid in their naive mind. tat's y the stupid disgraceful bocor MP still win!!!! &^%$#@#@