KUCHING: Sabahans are paying the price for the ‘sins’ committed by the government whilst under former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, claimed Sarawak PKR.
Referring to the infamous Mahathir-led Project IC which legalised tens and thousands of illegal Muslim Filipinos, Indonesians and others in the 1990s, state chief Baru Bian said that Mahathir’s only concern was in establishing a loyal ‘votes’ bank and neutralising Sabah’s then majority Christian population.
These “voters” have been Barisan Nasional’s fixed deposits in the past and ensured Umno won elections and that federal styled Islamic administration was administered in Sabah.
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“Now we are paying the price of the sins of the government under Mahathir. Unfortunately, the people of Sabah are the ones paying for Mahathir’s sins.
“Without the ‘Project IC’, these invaders would not have found it so easy to infiltrate and blend into the local population, and they certainly would not have ready sympathisers willing to help them,” Bian told reporters here yesterday.
He was commenting on the actions against the armed invaders.
“Perhaps the authorities were reluctant to take action because of the possibility of a backlash from the illegal IC community on Sabah.
“That the situation developed in this manner is due largely to the meddling in the demographics of Sabah by the Umno government under Mahathir,” he said.
Bian said that Mahathir’s unhelpful comments about the handling of the invasion led many to believe that he is still calling the shots in this country and that Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak is a mere administrator spinning lies and was not a true leader.
“The initial soft approach taken by the government and their attempts to downplay the seriousness of the situation raises questions that need to be answered.
“How did these people manage to land in such great numbers undetected by our sophisticated and expensive armoury and weaponry?
“Why did the Home Minister say they were ‘neither militants nor terrorists’ when they were clearly armed and had planned and carried out their operation with precision and without detection by our patrols and armed forces?,” asked Bian.
Bian added that the government had lied when it held back information and downplayed the situation.
“People were given a false sense of security, when in fact, our national security was being compromised.
“Why were the police sent in instead of the armed forces?
“The government finally got their act together and decided to send in the army after we lost eight precious lives… lives that could have been spared if our leaders had the sense to do what was necessary at the beginning,” he said.
Bian said that for all their indecisiveness, the government was quick to caste blame on Opposition Leader Anwar Ibrahim.
“For the BN government to accuse Anwar of having a hand in the invasion of Lahad Datu is beyond belief and comprehension. It appears to be the nature of Umno and BN to blame others when things go wrong, their favourite target being Anwar.
“They are quick to order investigations into the slightest allegation involving the opposition but when faced with accusations against themselves, such as the allegations by Deepak Jaikishan and P Balasubramaniam, we get along deafening silences from them,” he said.