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I express his regret over the 'Malaynisation' (to make Malay) proposal mooted by the Sabah Mufti Ustaz Bungsu @ Aziz Jaafar at a symposium at Putrajaya recently, as the latter had claimed that many indigenous Muslims in Sabah still refuse to call themselves Malay.

My stand is very clear on this matter. Sabah agreed to form Malaysia together with peninsular Malaysia, Singapore and Sarawak for security, economic prosperity, development, better education and healthcare and not in any way to become another Malay-majority state in the federation.

Let's take ethnic group A, that has an equal ratio of Muslims and non-Muslims, as an example. Would it make sense if a programme to Malaynise the Muslims within ethnic A take place considering that their language and hereditary customs are totally different from the Malays in peninsular Malaysia?

It is understandable for the mufti to say that the Javanese and Bugis in the peninsula now refer themselves as Malays since these three ethnics share the same language and hereditary customs but I don't think the Dusun and Murut ethnics in Sabah do.

The suggestion by the mufti clearly shows his lack of understanding and is a total mockery to the spirit of the Malaysia Agreement espoused by the founding fathers of Malaysia.

The mufti also erred in his statement that the Kadazan race is an "invented" ethnicity made of non-Muslim Kadazan-Dusun people who are mostly Catholics as it is a fact that the Kadazans have existed in Sabah long before the independence and as a Kadazan myself, I sympathise with him for his lack of historical knowledge about the major ethnic groups in Sabah.

DARELL LEIKING is the Member of Parliament for Penampang.


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