KOTA KINABALU, Jan 29, 2015:
An academy intended to set the records straight on Malaysia’s formation and educate East Malaysians of their rights, has been set up by the Borneo Heritage Foundation (BHF).
Spearheaded by BHF chairman, Opposition lawmaker Datuk Dr Jeffrey Kitingan, the academy will also promote and instil patriotism and nationalism amongst the people, apart from conducting leadership training.
Describing the setting up of the academy as “timely”, Jeffery who is also the State Reform Party president, said the establishment of the academy would institutionalise political, economic consciousness and education programmes, and would also empower the people on issues affecting East Malaysia.
This especially in view of the growing support and calls for Sabah and Sarawak to be restored as equal partners to Malaya in the Federation of Malaysia.
“This is also needed to restore our rights and constitutional safeguards that were promised to the Borneo States when it agreed to jointly formed the nation,” said Jeffrey during the academy’s launching ceremony, here.
Apart from the academy, a resource centre will also be established to undertake research and publications, as well as house materials, documents, books and publications important to the academy and serve as an information centre for reference.
Jeffrey is optimistic that the setting up of the academy and the resource centre, would ensure “correctness, truthfulness and consistency in the understanding” of Sabah and Sarawak’s aspirations at the time of Malaysia’s forming.
“Most importantly, it will serve as a reference point to correct and rectify the misinformation and distortion in the history of Malaysia and the formation of Malaysia that are disseminated by various bodies including the federal government.”
Distorted historical facts irked East Malaysians at large and, according to Jeffrey, who is also the Bingkor assemblyman it was not surprising that Sabahans and Sarawakians feel cheated.
He added that what “broke their hearts” more were threats to arrest Sabahans when they were seeking justice.