Thursday, November 12, 2009

Speaking on Article 161A of the Federal Constitution

Almost all Honourable Members who arose to speak, spoke on Article 161A of the Federal Constitution. Most of the voices I heard was on the problem faced by Marina Undau, born of mixed dayak and Chinese parentage who, in law is not recognized as a dayak. This has deprived her from relevant assistance in pursue of her dream of better education. She could not enjoy the privileges accorded to a bumiputera because she is not entitled to such privileges.

YB Dominique Ng besides mentioning Marina Undau went a step further which other YBs did not pick up. He mentioned a penan lady, Damaris Panai, although facing adversities of life, aspires to be a doctor. I think Damaris Panai could be motivated by the fact that penans who lived closer to nature can easily get sick and need treatment. This is where a doctor is need. However, this dream is shattered as there is no way, she can go to university as she has no identity card.

Yesterday, when I got my opportunity to speak, I did not speak specifically on Marina Undau and Damaris Panai as others have already touched on their problems. Instead I took a broader picture of it and went on to explain the legal and political implications of Article 161A has to the peoples of Sarawak. Article 161A of the federal constitution, if read with Articles 153 and 160 has far reaching effect on the iban and bidayuh communites in Sarawak. Under the federal constitution, nothing has been stated about iban and bidayuh and therefore, these two natives races of Sarawak could not under the federal constitution enjoy bumiputera status.

My speech created a bit of uproar when I touched on iban, bidayuhs and malay supremacy, but, I have no intention to hurt any one. I was only expressing my legal and political opinions the effect of the federal constitution to the peoples of Malaysia, in which, we should take in good heart with the view to have our voices heard by the relevant authorities so that the evils that could come from the constitution could be corrected. People are already feeling uneasy and it is timely that the federal constitution needs to be amended to keep people happy and so that racial harmony could be maintained.

No comments: