NCR AN ‘OLD’ ISSUE?
I refer to the Borneo Post 1 March 2012 pg 11 ‘Opposition told not to harp on old issues’ and I have this to say to William Limong: Issues that are unresolved and continue to plague the people are not considered old issues. I advise him to take some effort to study the judgments of the Courts for their definition of NCR land, and then, if that little exercise has not totally worn him out, to find out how the Lands and Surveys Department and other relevant government bodies choose to apply their own limited definition in their dealings with the people.
It is precisely because this is an aggravating and ongoing issue that SUHAKAM is currently conducting a public hearing for the National Inquiry into the Land Rights of Indigenous People.
However, I am happy to leave the final judgment to the people: if they are happy with the current situation on NCR matters and truly believe that their ‘rights are protected by the Barisan National (BN) government’, then by all means let them vote for more of the same with the Barisan National politicians.
On the other hand, if they believe that their rights are being trampled on, and that their lands and livelihood are being stolen by people who claim to ‘care’ about them, then I trust that they will exercise their good judgment to vote for a Pakatan Rakyat government.
THE ASIAN BEACON EXPERIENCE
I commend the Asian Beacon for the prompt apology over two articles published in its latest issue which had caused offence and hurt to the Iban and Bidayuh communities in Sarawak. It was only right and proper that the apology was made by Asian Beacon in good grace and accepted by the Minister in the same good grace.
If only other groups who are known and reviled for making false and incendiary accusations against other groups in the community would learn from this lesson in humility and understanding. No party can claim to be superior to the rest whether it be in terms of its religious beliefs, cultural practices or moral standards.
We remain ever hopeful that Malaysians will converge at a point of moderation where all issues can be discussed and settled in the true spirit of Muhibbah, which once imbued the various communities in this country.
N70 Ba’ Kelalan/