New rajahs worse than colonial masters, says Anwar

By Free Malaysia Today

KUCHING: The Sarawak Barisan Nasional (BN) government is worse than the colonial government, PKR de facto leader Anwar Ibrahim charged today.

“The colonial government might have robbed the state of its wealth, but it never grabbed native customary rights (NCR) land from the people. It respected the rights of the natives,” he said.

“The state government led by Taib Mahmud is worse than the colonial government; it not only robs the state of its wealth, but also grabs the NCR land from the natives; it is full of corruption, cronyism and abuse of power,” he said at the Sarawak PKR convention today.

“When the colonialists left, the new ‘rajahs’ (kings) take over Sarawak. They ‘sapu’ (clean-sweep) everything – government contracts, land, and business and at the same time they ignore the people’s problems, and cultivate a climate of fear. They are very corrupted,” he said.

“The new ‘rajahs’ introduced ‘politics of development’. What is it? For whom?” he asked.

“Of course there are roads, we don’t deny; there is electricity, we don’t deny; there are airports, we also don’t deny. But if the road projects, say, cost RM100 million, they will claim RM160 million. If the airport project costs RM200 million, they will claim RM260 million, and the extras will be pocketed by them,” he alleged.

“Their corruption, their abuse of power and their land-grabbing have now been recorded in the international profile.

“I will get my contacts overseas and ask them to open the files on Sarawak leaders who have committed serious crimes against the people of Sarawak,” Anwar said.

He said that Kuala Lumpur could not do anything as it is equally corrupted.

New masters

Anwar also blamed Sarawakians who are prepared to support and be colonialised by these new masters.

He said when the new colonisers took away their land, the people become quiet, and when they slapped them, they also keep quiet.

And when they ill-treated them, the people continued to show their loyalty to them, he said.

“That blind loyalty is stupid loyalty,” he said, calling on all PKR members to wake up the people from their slumber.

“You have to work hard, double your pace and go to every village and longhouse and tell the people that their future and that of their children depend on them.

“We race against time, race against money, race against threats and intimidation and race against brute power and force.

“If we can do this and mobilise the people, no Taib Mahmud, or Najib (Tun Razak) or Rosmah (Mansor) can stop the people’s power,” he said.

“Defeating Taib or PBB and SUPP are not good enough in the coming election. We must change the whole system that is rampant with corruption, cronyism and abuse of power.

“As long as the system is not changed, (there is) no way we can see justice in this land, rule of law, an independent judiciary, and an independent Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission,” he said.