Where will the Dayak be after PRU 13January 4th, 2013 at 2:34
Written by: Dr. John Brian Anthony
This would be my first article for 2013 and I am glad to be back and writing down my thoughts. I read all the comments and try to gauge what is the level of our thinking and what are we thinking about. I would like to address both questions in order that we can move forward in our discussion. The intention is not to conclude who is right or wrong but it is important to recognize that our thinking do indicate changes in our perception and our action.
A little recap
Before going any further, let me summarize the little things that has happened around me. The preparation for PRU 13 has stepped up in tempo despite continued indecision by the Prime Minister. There are still a lot of uncertainty but all the same, planning and work have to continue for the election. I cannot say that the approach to the coming election is normal because of the gravity of the consequences to Malaysia if PR do not win Putra Jaya. So many things are stack against us Dayak and it is choking to say the least when we have enough evidences that the wealth of our land is being taken away from us for the creation of personal wealth by the country’s BN leaders.
Appointment to DAP as central Executive Committee member
Then I was appointed to the Central Executive Committee of DAP at the December 15th 2012 Convention and frankly I felt that I have to up the level of my political contribution and also to take a new role as a team member of the DAP national leadership. Thus, there are new expectation to be met. I even ponder on new political strategies to bring PRIDE and even COURAGE back to the Dayak in order for them to take action if they want to see change take place in Malaysia and specifically for the community.
Reinforcing Dayak pride and courage
The Gawai Kelingkang Batu Tempan Balang kena Nempa Ketuai Dayak ngiring bansa is very much on my mind. The Gawai will be on the 9th January till 11th ( 3 days and nights of timang) by a bard man from Ngemah, a lemambang Muyan. All are welcome. There will be no drinking and feasting but a series of ritual to invoke the fighting spirit of Dayak and to gain back our lost pride as the renowned Headhunters of Sarawak. We need this pride and courage today to make the change that we want. Fighter Balang of Batang Rejang fought the Raja because he refused to submit to the Raja tax. He was later betrayed by the Iban themselves, captured through trickery and killed.
Are we facing the same predicament but at a different time and situation? This lead us to the subject of thinking and wisdom – are we on the right track by fighting for change of Government from BN to PR?
Level of our thinking
Do we still look at the small insignificant things that BN has taught us? (1)That the Chinese are not to be trusted because they will take advantage of us Dayak. Is this the BN approach to split the Dayak from the Chinese. Why? If the Dayak and Chinese come together that will pose a serious threat to the power that is in Sarawak today. We should be not play race against race politics in Malaysia.
(2) That national parties is not relevant in Sarawak because that will mean we will surrender Sarawak to DAP, PKR and PAS.While in the same breathe we want change. Can any of the local opposition parties for now challenge the might o BN? If not, then we must be pragmatic enough to align ourselves with opposition national parties to effect the change.By the way, is BN not led by a national party (UMNO)?
(3) We always felt that Sarawak is different and that our issues are different from Malaya. But is our system of Government the same or different? If it is, why do we think that we can change the rule and system of Government. All these has contributed to our lost of focus in our objectives of wanting to see change and our politics generally.
In what context?
On a personal context, many people see my involvement with DAP as difficult to accept. That is what change is all about, moving toward a new environment and even to a certain extend an unknown quantity and quality. If you cannot take that ONE important step forward you will never know what could happen because you are sitting in your comfort zone.
For me, it is a golden opportunity to bring change to Malaysia’s politics where the Dayak take an active role in shaping the national agenda. DAP is also the second biggest party in Malaysia after UMNO with 29 MPs. After all, DAP is a ruling Opposition party ( Penang ) and part of the Government in other Pakatan controlled states and also in Sarawak, DAP is the second strongest party after PBB. DAP is a strong principle party and will never sell out to BN. It is historical that DAP is majority Chinese but the party has now reposition itself as an active multi-racial party representing all Malaysian not withstanding their race, religion and region.
I used to think that Sarawak is for Sarawakian but our political structure say otherwise. We have to be Malaysian first otherwise this country is not going to work.
What are we thinking about?
What will be in stored for Dayak if PR win Putra Jaya? Next question is what will Dayak get if BN win and remain in Putra Jaya? My other question is WHAT IS THE DAYAK GOING TO DO ABOUT IT? That is where you in discussion come in.
Some of you are even looking for a Dayak saviour! Can one single leader take the responsibility of saving the Dayak from the situation they are in today? My answer is NO. It is a collective effort and it requires all of us to work closely together. It is just not one person sacrifices, but all of us Dayak who see the need for change and we want to make the changes. In all my years of working toward the Dayak cause and struggle through the Dayak agenda, there is no safe ground when you are committed and there is NO FREE progress without putting your money where your mouth is.
How do we expect to gain something without investing in taking risk, time, money and sacrifices?? That would be a helpless and hopeless mentality because we cannot wait to be served and that others will do the work for you.
I am appealing for unity among us and not bickering and cynical remarks. I am looking for action from each of us for the suggestion that we have discussed. If there is NO action, we will get nothing my friends. There is NO charity for people who do not put up a decent effort into the work of making the political change.
I have said enough and now I will leave it to all of you to gauge what you can do and is willing to do it. In my limited experience, other communities would even donate $50 to the cause if they felt that they cannot do the ACTION themselves. We cannot stand around wrapping our hand across our chest, give nothing, do nothing and still expect to benefit from the work of others – when you want everything free, you will get nothing at the end of the day. Politics is not a comic book story where super heroes will come and save the little girl from being crushed by a monster.
Let me remind all of us again, please do not post a ONE LINER as it contribute nothing to the body of knowledge that we are trying to create in this blog. One liners are for tweeting and fb.
Aram meh kita sama berubah and Change WE Must.