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Discontent is still running high in Malaysia’s Sabah, despite promises of redress by the new government.

As part of its electoral strategy during the campaigning for the Malaysian 14th General Elections last year, the Pakatan Harapan (PH) coalition devoted attention to the Sabahan and Sarawakian electorate. Hence, a core priority of their electoral manifesto included restoring the terms of the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63).

MA63 recognized Sabah and Sarawak’s status as equal partners to then-Malaya and Singapore, which formed the constituent units of Malaysia. However, in 1976, an amendment was passed in Parliament that shifted the status of Sabah and Sarawak to under the Malaysian federation, together with the states in Peninsular Malaysia. This change in status, coupled with other issues like the exploitation of natural resources and the lack of support from the federal government, has contributed to grievances felt by certain quarters in Sabah and Sarawak.

Almost a year after its surprise electoral victory, the PH government is finding it difficult to implement its reform promises, and its pledged restoration of MA63 remains to be fulfilled. However, it has taken the first step with the formation of an MA63 steering committee on the rights and autonomy of Sabah and Sarawak.

Below are some of the key challenges facing the state of Sabah.

The Oil Royalty Issue and Exploitation of Natural Resources

One of the significant areas of contention between the federal government and Sabah is over the use of natural resources, including oil royalties.

Sabah and Sarawak contribute roughly 60 percent of Malaysia’s total petroleum output. However, each state government received a mere 5 percent of the oil royalties. PH had pledged to increase these oil royalties to 20 percent for both states and return 50 percent of all tax revenue. This has yet to materialize, which is not surprising given the huge amounts involved and the current fiscal predicament faced by the federal government.

Beyond oil, there have been longstanding concerns that the natural resources of the two states are being exploited. Most recently, Prime Minister Mahathir bin Mohamad spoke about exploiting coal reserves in Malaysia, including in Sabah and Sarawak, to generate power in Peninsular Malaysia. Sabah Chief Minister Shafie Apdal welcomed the proposal. This has been received negatively by the state opposition, which suggested that there were ulterior motives behind this proposal. There were also warnings about the environmental ramifications of using coal to produce electricity. Some quarters argued that this was not a good idea given the lack of infrastructure, including water and electrical supply, in rural areas.

Reflecting this suspicion, eyebrows were raised when Mahathir’s political party, Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (PPBM), expanded into Sabah in February 2019. This is a political U-turn as Mahathir had promised pre-election that he would not grow his party on Sabahan soil. While Mahathir is likely driven by the need to increase PPBM’s share of seats in parliament, this move has increased cynicism in Sabah over Mahathir’s true intentions. When Mahathir was asked if he had consulted the leadership of Warisan, Shafie’s party, before this move, his justification was that “there was no necessity to do that.” The situation is compounded by the perceived lack of push-back from Warisan. For some, the expansion of PPBM into Sabah is a confirmation of a covert agenda by the federal government to control the state agenda, including the exploitation of its natural resources.

The Project IC 2.0 Controversy

The possibility of another round of Project IC – granting citizenship, and thus identity cards (ICs), to immigrants — is also generating concern in Sabah. From the 1960s to the early 2000s, Sabah’s population grew by 300 percent — an anomaly when compared to other states. And as the net population grew, the demographic composition markedly changed, with a significant increase in the Muslim population within Sabah. As registered in the 1960 census, the percentage of Muslims in Sabah was at 37.9 percent, with non-Muslims being the majority at 62.1 percent; these figures inverted in 2010 when Muslims became the majority at 65.4 percent.

Through investigations by the Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI), it was found that Malaysian ICs, birth certificates, and other documents were issued by syndicates and individuals assisted by allegedly corrupt officials to undocumented illegal immigrants since the 1970s. This facilitated their access to most rights of Malaysian citizenship. Muslim immigrants from Mindanao, in the southern Philippines, are examples of groups that entered Sabah illicitly due to the cultural proximity.

The political party that gained the most from this was UMNO, the previous ruling party of Malaysia. As Sabah became a Muslim-majority state the electoral voting patterns became tilted in favor of a Muslim-majority government as the Muslim community had the largest number of seats in Sabah. The mass granting of this citizenship took place during Mahathir’s first tenure as prime minister. In 2015, Mahathir hinted at another round, when he explained that it was the government’s policy to recognize people who were loyal to the country, adding that it was not fair to disallow their children from attending Malaysian schools.

There is renewed skepticism in Sabah that the population re-engineering agenda is once again being executed. A recent proposal by the federal government to legalize the status of “stateless” children has led to criticism against the state government. Jeffrey Kitingan, the Sabah opposition leader, also raised concerns about the recent arrests of 13 terror suspects in Tambunan and Semporna, wondering whether the influx of terrorists was because of the state giving legal documents to those of Filipino ancestries. Martin Tommy, who is Warisan’s legal advisor-cum-Supreme Council member and who also serves as political secretary in the Prime Minister’s Department, responded to this by saying that Shafie had never announced the government was giving out documents to Filipinos. He said that Shafie was merely calling for more compassion toward stateless people, especially those who were denied citizenship because one of their parents was not Malaysian.  He added that Shafie also said that “stateless people should not be denied their rights merely due to concern over the possibility of another round of Projek IC.”

To add further confusion to the situation, there were recent debates, which also garnered heavy attention, over whether Javanese and Bugis people, who are also Muslims, should be considered as natives in Sabah. That would entitle them to become voters among having several other special rights. This proposal was put forth by Warisan’s law and native affairs minister, Aidi Moktar — thus this further increased the suspicions and raised questions over the need for such a proposal.

The Call for Independence

There are more issues than just those stated above — contentions over healthcare, education, and religion also feature on the extensive list, explaining why some Sabahans are frustrated and have called for independence.

While the federal government should not dismiss such calls as sheer grandiloquence, it is also important to note that the secessionist sentiment stems from an urbanized fraction of civil society. The reality is that the vast majority of East Malaysians live in rural areas where education is inaccessible, thus there is a severe lack of political maturity, so even conceptualizing referendums and sovereign governance are likely alien to them.

Giving further nuance are anecdotes of how patronage politics are deployed in these rural areas, where most of the inhabitants are so poverty-stricken that clean water and proper food are unattainable to them. Politicians have capitalized on this — during the election season, bags of rice and household amenities, with modest sums of money (allegedly ranging between 300-500 Malaysian ringgits), are distributed to these people. Voters in poverty will support candidates or parties that provide them with assistance. Thus, one can argue that the lack of development is strategically beneficial for the incumbent as it reinforces their leverage over rural areas and maintains their strong support base, enabling them to secure their seats with ease.

Hypothetically, even if civil society in Sabah attempted to organize for independence, the federal government would not simply accept it, considering that Sabah is a massive resource pool. It will not be surprising if the federal government moves to defuse any such attempts. At the same time, some state politicians may want to use these attempts to put constant pressure on the federal government.

However, there remains some optimism. De facto Law Minister Liew Vui Keong, who is a Sabahan, has announced that a bill will be tabled in Parliament regarding the re-establishment of Sabah and Sarawak’s status as well as the special grants disbursed to them by the federal center. A prerequisite for an amendment of the constitution demands the support of a two-thirds majority in Parliament — can the PH government secure this? Will the passing of the mill lead to a positive outcome for Sabah and Sarawak? The devil, as it is said, is always in the details. If the bill is not passed, there will be greater cynicism from those who have advocated for change. How will this play out in Sabah remains to be seen?

Piya Sukhani is a Research Analyst at the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies, Nanyang Technological University.

Source: The Diplomat

KOTA KINABALU: An indigenous people’s group in Sabah has called on de facto law minister Liew Vui Keong to include its representatives as well as civil society organisations in the committees to review and implement the Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63).

Himpunan Asasi Rakyat Untuk Sabah (Harus) chairman Andrew Atama Ambrose said it is important for the indigenous people of both Sabah and Sarawak to participate in the committees as MA63 has a direct impact on their culture and rights.

“We are concerned because not all those selected to sit in the proposed committees know about the plight faced by indigenous people.

“Besides, Harus is of the opinion that it is better to set up three additional committees, one each for Sabah, Sarawak and Malaya, to discuss MA63 locally.”

He told FMT that these committees should involve all stakeholders, including civil society organisations and activists who have been fighting for MA63.

He said these people would be able to present their opinions and make proposals on how the steering, working and technical committees could move forward in implementing the agreement.

For Sabah, he said, the more crucial issues which needed to be prioritised were the breaches which MA63 activist Zainnal Ajamain said had reached 50.

“This is a serious allegation because a breach, even one, could jeopardise the whole agreement, what more 50. We need to correct these before we can move on.”

Atama, who is the coordinator of the Indigenous People’s Movement for Self-Determination and Liberation Asia, added that MA63 was intended to safeguard the rights of the people, especially in Sabah and Sarawak.

But for more than 50 years, he said, their rights had been trampled on and their interests neglected, resulting in them lagging badly behind peninsular states in terms of modernisation.

He told FMT this is why it is better to have separate committees for Sabah and Sarawak, apart from a working committee, as lumping the issues of both states under a single committee would be too overwhelming.

On Oct 10, Liew announced the federal Cabinet’s decision to set up three special committees to look into MA63.

The steering committee will consist of top leaders representing Sabah, Sarawak, and Malaya; the technical committee will include all MPs from Sabah and Sarawak, and the working committee will sort out the terms of reference for the consideration of the other two committees.

Liew said the working committee would comprise of various representatives from Sabah and Sarawak, including government heads of departments for staffing and administrative work.


"Prof. Leigh, 24 September 1841 is the day that Sarawak was established as an independent country. Sarawak people was proud to be Sarawakian and living in a sovereign country and regard the Rajah as "Trustee" of the people.

The "trusteeship" relationship was widely used by the Great Powers at that time, for example, the British, Dutch, Spain, etc. However, there are many approach use in setting up the "trausteeship" relationship in different country.

For example, the British has many experience and knowledge in term of "trusteeship" with different country and community that the British develop over the course of time, the "trusteeship" governance that they think is the best was finally established.

However, the anomaly happen when the British subject, James Brooke become a "trustee" of a newly independent Sarawak and design his own "trusteeship"-based kind of governance that put the British design of "trusteeship" like a shameful formula.

What do you expect of His/Her Majesty's Government reaction dealing with the British subject which is more successful than a whole colonial power the-like of British?

The root is a mere arrogance and jealousy of the great empire, The British empire in the face of a great man, the Rajah of Sarawak.

Until today, the British will not acknowledge the success story of Sarawak compare with the other British "trust territory" around the world."
Zulfaqar Sa'adi

"If Sarawak does not gained independent in 1963, then, all of us must accept the fact that Sarawak (and Sabah are) is still colonize. First by British and then, by Malaya in the present days."
Sylvia John

"That mean, sarawak never independence in the first place. Now still like a colony."
Edison Poi

"If Sarawak did not gained independence, than MA63 is void because only a sovereign nation can form an international treaty with another nation. Doesn't this mean Malaysia Federation is not legal?"
Walter Gregory Ripon

Sebelum terbentuknya "malaysia atau persekutuan malaysia", Negara North Borneo telah diberikan kuasa wilayah oleh Ratu Permaisuri England, Victoria pada tahun 1881 untuk menjalankan segala urusan rasmi dibawah pengendalian North Borneo Chartered Company.  Manakala Negara Sarawak pula sudah berada dibawah pemerintahan Rajah Sarawak, James Brooke sejak 1841. Pada 1888, ketiga-tiga negara Borneo iaitu Negara North Borneo, Negara Sarawak dan Negara Brunei telah bernaung (Protectorate States) dibawah British bagi melindungi negara mereka daripada serangan luar.

Keadaan ini semua berubah selepas Perang Dunia ke-2 yang mana status Negara North Borneo dan Negara Sarawak telah diturunkan menjadi "Tanah Jajahan Makhota British (Crown Colony of British)" daripada status "Tanah Naungan (Protectorate State)". Dalam erti kata lain, pentadbiran dikedua-dua negara Borneo sebelum ini terletak dibawah NBCC dan Brooke, kini ia ditadbir terus daripada pejabat pentadbiran tanah jajahan di London.

Seperti yang anda dapat lihat pada gambar diatas ini, itulah keadaan yang sebenarnya berlaku.

Apa yang menyedihkan ialah apabila malaya telah mempengaruhi keputusan British dalam memberikan Kemerdekaan kepada bangsa Negara Sabah dan bangsa Negara Sarawak. Pemimpin-pemimpin Borneo telah ditipu, dikecam dan diugut untuk bersetuju menyertai malaysia. Dijanjikan untuk diberikan kemerdekaan selepas terbentuknya malaysia rupa-rupanya apa yang menjadi mimpi ngeri pada peringkat awal malaysia ini dikhabarkan sebenarnya telah menjadi nyata. Pembentukkan malaysia ini sebenarnya bukanlah sebuah pembentukkan "persekutuan baru" mahupun "negara baru" tetapi ia adalah lebih kepada "Pembesaran Tanah Persempadanan Kuasa Politik malaya". Ini jelas dapat dibuktikan melalui pendedahan pihak kami mengenai status kedudukan keahlian malaya dalam United Nations (UN).

Negara North Borneo dan Negara Sarawak berserta dengan Negara Singapore ketika membentuk malaysia masih lagi berstatus "Tanah Jajahan British". Status tersebut hanya termansuh selepas terbentuknya malaysia pada 16 September 1963 yang sepatutnya dijadualkan pada 31 Ogos 1963.
Apa yang menyedihkan ialah Negara Sabah, Negara Sarawak dan Negara Singapore telah ditipu namun kerana kebijaksanaan pemimpin negara Singapore, mereka berjaya melepaskan diri daripada cengkaman penjajahan malaya yang bertopengkan malaysia pada tahuan 1965 dan lantas menjadi negara yang benar-benar merdeka daripada malaysia. Sementara itu, negara Sabah dan negara Sarawak yang sememangnya berstatus negara dan mempunyai kuasa yang sama dengan malaya telah dinafikan malah diturunkan status menjadi negeri. Pemimpin-pemimpinnya telah diperkudakan, dipermainkan, dipolitikkan malah dilagakan agar tiada perpaduan dikalangan mereka agar membolehkan diri mereka dimanipulasikan demi kepentingan politik malaya.

Sehingga kini, keadaan ini masih lagi sama namun setelah kewujudan pihak kami, SSKM yang kini sudah bergerak melalui SSU-UK, malaya kian terketar-ketar kakinya kerana ditelanjangkan segala tipu helah mereka. Apa yang pihak kami dapat lihat ialah malu bukan lagi menjadi isu kepada mereka tetapi lebih kepada mengekalkan kelangsungan kuasa politik malaya di tanah Borneo ini. Mereka berusaha untuk memastikan kuasa politik mereka tidak terlepas daripada cengkaman genggaman mereka. Atas sebab itu mengapa sejumlah pemimpin-pemimpin Borneo telah diserapkan didalam pentadbiran kepimpinan mahathir. Selain untuk mendapatkan sokongan, ia juga adalah bertujuan untuk meredakan sentimen perpisahan ini dengan menggunakan pemimpin-pemimpin Borneo ini untuk bercakap bagi pihak malaya.

Kebodohan malaya ialah mereka beranggapan bahawa rakyat negara Sabah dan rakyat negara Sarawak akan diam namun sehingga kini, keadaan dan sentimen ini menjadi semakin kuat dan semakin difahami tentang mengapa Perpisahan ini mesti dilakukan.

Kuasa Kedaulatan Perundangan dan Kemerdekaan Negara Sabah dan Negara Sarawak sebenarnya berada didalam genggaman kerajaan malaya namun kedua-dua negara ini masih mempunyai kuasa autonomi dalam banyak perkara yang membataskan penguasaan malaya keatas dua negara Borneo ini.

Pentadbiran Negara Sabah dan Negara Sarawak yang sebelum ini dari London kini berada di Kuala Lumpur ataupun dengan lebih tepat Putrajaya. Namun malaya masih tidak boleh sewenang-wenangnya mencampuri urusan pentadbiran Borneo kerana terdapat perkara-perkara yang bukan dibawah bidang kuasa mereka. Tetapi apabila dilihat secara halus sejak dahulu lagi diawal pembentukan malaysia ini, malaya tidak pernah berhenti untuk menyelinap masuk untuk mencampuri pentadbiran politk di kedua-dua negara. Akhirnya negara Sabah kini telah jatuh kedalam cengkaman genggaman mereka melalui kuasa politik pakatan harapan (ph) yang mendominasi Sabah melalui parti sekutu mereka iaitu warisan (parti tempatan). Kewujudan ph didalam pentadbiran kerajaan negara Sabah yang diterajui oleh parti tempatan iaitu parti warisan adalah simbol penguasaan malaya di negara Sabah dan perkara ini berlaku kerana kebodohan pemimpin-pemimpin Sabah yang gilakan pangkat, nama, kekayaan.

Mereka-mereka ini semua yang berada didalam warisan-ph sedang menjahanamkan bangsa negara Sabah sekarang melalui polisi 'mesra pendatang tanpa izin' dengan pemberian dokumen yang akan membolehkan mereka memiliki status taraf kewarganegaraan sama seperti penduduk asal tanpa melalui proses penyaringan yang betul..

Sarawak sehingga sekarang didominasi oleh parti-parti tempatan dan malaya tidak mampu mencampuri secara langsung pentadbiran politik mereka dan keadaan ini jauh lebih baik daripada keadaan politik negara Sabah.

Persoalan yang perlu dijawab dengan jujur sekarang ialah adakah bangsa negara Sabah dan bangsa negara Sarawak hanya mahu merelakan semua ini berlaku tanpa sebarang usaha untuk berjuang?

Jikalau jawapannya ialah tidak, maka perkara utama yang perlu anda lakukan ialah "Pastikan Kuasa Politik Negara Sabah dan Negara Sarawak berada dibawah cengkaman genggaman parti-parti tempatan sepenuhnya 100%. Sama ada mereka adalah parti pihak kerajaan mahupun pembangkang asalkan mereka parti tempatan yang pro Sabahan dan Sarawakian, itu mesti menjadi keutamaan anda semua."

Selebihnya pihak kami akan maklumkan dikemudian hari.

Sebarkan info ini.  

Chong Kah Kiat

Apa sumbangan beliau pada Sabah?

- Pengharaman bot pancung yg sering digunakan oleh pendatang asing untuk mencerobohi Sabah kerana keupayaan bot itu yang laju

- Banyak 'perkampungan atas air' seluruh Sabah yg dihuni oleh pendatang asing dimusnahkan. Especially dekat dengan masjid terapung kota kinabalu.

- Penangkapan pendatang asing dibuat secara menyeluruh dan pemulangan pendatang yg ditangkap ke negara asal giat dijalankan

- Beliau juga mengambil tindakan tegas sikap tidak telus dan tidak amanah sesetengah pegawai tinggi kerajaan misalnya dalam kes menyewa kereta mewah sehingga mencecah RM12,800 sebulan, projek kerajaan tidak siap dan sebagainya.

- Beberapa kawasan pelancongan dibangunkan untuk memperkasakan lagi sektor industri pelancongan di Sabah. Salah satunya ialah: Simpang Mengayau

- dan banyak lagi...

Chong Kah Kiat hanya menjadi ketua menteri selama 2tahun mengikut sistem penggiliran ketua menteri yg diperkenalkan Dr.Mahathir. Beliau juga tidak disenangi ramai ahli parlimen BN kerana agresif dan cenderung 'menentang arus' kerajaan.

Kita kehilangan ketua menteri Sabah yg berwibawa dan benar2 berjiwa rakyat, dan kini dihadiahkan seorang ketua menteri yg TIDAK memperjuangkan hak rakyat Sabah.. TIDAK membela nasib Sabahans.. dan dia tetap menjadi ketua menteri setelah beberapa penggal.

Kesimpulannya, kalau mau bertahan lama sebagai ketua,

"MESTI MAU JADI LEMBU UMNO"

Source: Anonymous

In August 1963 a new Federation of Malaysia will (unless we stop it) be created. It will cover the Federation of Malaya, Singapore, Brunei, North Borneo, and Sarawak. It will be created in the face of known and serious opposition from the people in these countries.

Britain has the major responsibility for this unpopular Federation of Malaya (which is heavily dependent on British political, economic and military influence) to suppress the anti-colonial movements in the other four countries (particularly Singapore). The consent of our parliament is necessary for the inclusion of these four countries in the new Federation. At the root of it all lies the desire of the British government to "protect" the profits from rubber, tin, bauxite and iron ore in Malaya, and the oil, gold, rubber, and timber in the Borneo territories.

THE BORNEO TERRITORIES
Brunei, Sarawak and North Borneo are on the island of Borneo, most of which belongs to Indonesia. They are separated from the Malayan Federation and Singapore by 350 miles of sea and have few historical links with Malaya. Their inclusion in Malaysia is therefore quite arbitrary, and it is being done simply to strengthen British indirect control over them for political, economic and strategic reasons. For one thing, Brunei has OIL! The three countries are strategically well placed, and they provide a good support area and training ground for the major British military, aid, and naval concentrations in the bases in the Malayan Federation and Singapore; for this reason, all the five Malaysia countries have recently been incorporated into the British Unified Command structure. The real nature of Malaysia can only be understood in the light of this Unified Command, covering exactly the same countries.

REVOLT IN BRUNEI
The opposition to Malaysia in the Borneo territories has been rapidly mounting since the new Federation was first mooted in May 1961. In Brunei, the opposition came to a climax in December 1962, when the Party Ra'ayat (People's Party) led an open revolt. This party won every single local and nationally elected seat, campaigning on its anti-Malaysia policy. There could be no clearer verdict of the people.

In April 1962 the Sarawak United People Party held a demonstration of 10,000 people against Malaysia, and some of their leaders were detained and deported. A rally protesting against these arrests, attended by 20,000 people, was then held at Sibu, after which all meetings were banned!

In North Borneo, there is no election of any sort; it is a 100% colony, and the voice of the people cannot be heard. However, North Borneo, of all the three countries, has the least possible interest in Malaysia, and opposition cannot be doubted.

Why should these countries want to be ruled from Kuala Lumpur in Malaya? They are increasingly conscious of their lack of democratic rights and wanting independence with a view to integration among themselves. Their future probably lies more with Indonesia than with Malaya. The decisive argument against Malaysia (as such) is the injustice of forcing the three Borneo territories into it against their will; the merger of Singapore with the mainland is a separate issue.

Singapore is an island but it is joined to the mainland by a road and rail causeway and is in every way part of Malaya. The whole country was "British Malaya" before the Japanese invasion in 1942. After the war, Britain proposed a Malayan Union which excluded Singapore. The reason for this exclusion was the importance of Singapore as a major British military, air, and naval base.

The Malayan Union scheme was opposed by both progressive and reactionary groups in Malaya, for different reasons. The reactionary groups won the ear of the British Labour government, and the Federation was created in 1948, with Singapore excluded.

MALAYAN FEDERATION
The Federation of Malaya won independence in 1957, the British Conservative government of that time being satisfied that the feudal and business groups which dominated the Federation's Alliance government would not disturb their vital political, economic and military interests in the country, and would collaborate with Britain in opposing any radical trends. Since 1957, the Alliance government has faithfully carried out its duties along those lines, and the political and economic conditions of the people remain as they were, if not worse. Due to the heavy feudal and religious pressure on the Malaya peasantry, the political opposition to the Alliance is weak and has, in any case, to work in the context of laws enabling the government to arrest and detain opponents without charge or trial. However, the Malayan Labour Party and the Federation's Party Ra'ayat, United within the Malayan Socialist Front, oppose Malaysia.

SINGAPORE
Singapore has got limited internal self-government. In a small island bristling with British military "hardware," cut off from its hinterland across the Causeway, the emptiness of such self-government has become increasingly apparent. Singapore has in successive elections over the years elected government with increasingly progressive policies, but once in office, each has revealed these policies to be mere verbiage and has made its main work a continual attempt to suppress the socialist and trade union movement. Periodic mass arrests are the milestones of Singapore's recent history.

The People's Action Party under Mr.Lee Kuan Yew is the latest in the series of governments. It was elected with strong popular support in 1959. Within 18 months, the P.A.P. had shown that it had no intention of carrying out its promises, and popular support began to ebb away. In early 1961, it suffered a humiliating by-election defeat. This was "the writing on the wall" and, soon after, the Malaysia plan was announced, with the avowed aim of smashing  "communism" in Singapore. The P.A.P. hailed the plan as an oasis which could save them from disaster. The inevitability of that disaster was underlined by another by-election in which Malaysia was the main issue, and in which they were again defeated. Popular support for the P.A.P. sank to zero, and the left wing of the P.A.P. broke away to form the Socialist Front (Barisan Socialis), taking with them large chunks of the P.A.P. Parliamentary and trade union support.

SHAM REFERENDUM
It was clear that if a general election were fought with Malaysia as the main issue, the P.A.P. would suffer a total eclipse. Some way had to be found to provide the appearance of a democratic mandate. It was decided to take a leaf out of General de Gaulle's book and hold a Referendum. This took place on September 1st, 1962, and was an extraordinary piece of political trickery and pressure. It was widely agreed that at least 60% of the electorate was against Malaysia, yet a vote of 70% in favor of it was registered in the referendum. This was "too good to be true"; it was obvious that undue influence had been brought to bear.

Source: Doris Jones and Zurainee Tehek

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