Transformation of Sabah and Sarawak Within Malaysia
Of late, many blogs, including MT People’s Portal, were filled with articles, mostly trying to portray that Sabah and Sarawak were unfairly treated by the Government of Malaysia. To prove their points, they portrayed that both Sabah and Sarawak are lagging behind the other West Malaysia states, the Persekutuan Tanah Melayu, in term of overall development.
Not many realize that, at the time of formation of Malaysia in 1963, Persekutuan Tanah Melayu were a fast developing country, being the largest exporters of TIN and RUBBER in the world. While, Sabah and Sarawak were then STRETCHES OF DENSE EQUITORIAL RAIN FORESTS, punctuated by pockets of human settlements, by the various INDIGENOUS ETHNICS GROUPINGS, apart from pockets of IMMIGRANT CHINESE enclaves.
Accross the South China Sea, Persekutuan Tanah Melayu, in English Malaya, had been over 5 years INDEPENDENT of the British rule. After 5 years, the British found out how capable UMNO Malay leaders were in administering the multi-racial Malaya, especially in maintaining PEACE and HARMONY among all the rakyat. The UMNO-dominated three-party coalition of UMNO, MCA and MIC were the stabilising factor, to ensure that the rakyat were focussed on developing the country, rather than fighting one another, as happened in many African newly independent countries.
Unlike Persekutuan Tanah Melayu, there was NO SINGLE ETHNIC GROUPING strong enough to be EFFECTIVE RULERS of both Sabah and Sarawak, should the British decide to grant independence to them. The various INDIGENOUS ETHNIC GROUPINGS were then too adverse and diverse, to set up a Government, to take over from the British. In many ways, Sabah and Sarawak were LIABILITIES, rather than ASSETS, to the British. But, to let go Sabah and Sarawak on their own would be like leaving an infant in the RAIN FOREST JUNGLE.
Down on the southern tip of Persekutuan Tanah Melayu, Singapore was then still ill-prepared to be an independent city-state. They did not have their own army or police. The communists were then very strong, and there was a real possibility that the communist would take over Singapore. The British was anti-communist, and would not let Singapore be victims of communist take-over.
To solve both problems in one shot, the British decided to INJECT Sabah, Sarawak and Singapore, into Persekutuan Tanah Melayu, and make them independent as part of a new political entity called MALAYSIA. Malaysia was officially formed on 16th September 1963, consisting of 11 states of former Persekutuan Tanah Melayu, and 3 new states, Sabah, Sarawak and Singapore. However, due to PAP’s Singapore INSISTENCE on the concept of ‘Malaysian Malaysia’, Malaysia decided to EXPEL Singapore from the Federation of 14 states in 1965.
Since the independence of Sabah and Sarawak in 1963 as part of Malaysia, both states were transformed from VAST TROPICAL RAIN FORESTS to what they are today. The various INDIGENOUS ETHNIC GROUPINGS were then exposed to educations, good medical services, and all other Government services.
In a way, it was the ESTABLISHMENT based in Persekutuan Tanah Melayu which has UNITED the various ETHNIC GROUPINGS in Sabah and Sarawak. Without the role of ESTABLISHMENT in Persekutuan Tanah Melayu, there would be NO SINGLE ETHNIC GROUPING strong enough to form an effentive Governments to unite the states.
The people of Sabah and Sarawak should NEVER FORGET the role of Persekutuan Tanah Melayu in bringing them up from INFANTS to ADULTHOOD. When you become ADULTS, please do not forget your parents who had brought you up.
I can not blame certain ETHNIC GROUP who like to send their elderly parents to OLD FOLKS HOMES. They are simply UNGRATEFUL to their parents…