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Jeffrey accepts ex-CM’s challenge but…

By Raymond Tombung of FMT
Jeffrey Kitingan has welcomed Harris Salleh's challenge to debate the issue of Kuala Lumpur colonising Sabah on condition it is open to the international media, among others.
KOTA KINABALU: State Reform Party (STAR) Sabah chairman Jeffrey Kitingan is willing debate with former chief minister Harris Salleh if the latter is “formally appointed” by the federal and state governments to represent their viewpoints.
Describing Harris’ invitation as “a golden opportunity”, he said the debate would be a “historic” one and should be open to the international media.
“As far as STAR is concerned, this will be our golden opportunity to publicise the whole issue of Sabah’s position in Malaysia to the global community.
“So let’s not do it half way. Let’s make this a historic debate which will be judged not only by Malaysians but by other governments and peoples of the world,” Jeffrey said.
He was responding to Harris’ challenge yesterday. Harris had challenged Jeffrey to a public debate on the latter’s claims that Kuala Lumpur is colonising Sabah.
Harris said the debate would be confined to Jeffrey’s contention and evidence.
Harris claimed he was offering himself because Sabah Chief Minister Musa Aman “has a very busy schedule”.
He also proposed that the moderators for the debate be former state secretary Hamid Egoh and ex-state attorney general Herman Luping.
Accepting Harris’ challenge, Jeffrey said: “Harris is not the right person to debate on the issue because he is a past chief minister who is no longer involved in the running of the government, so he doesn’t have locus standi to speak on behalf of the government.
“But I will gladly face him if the federal or state government makes a formal announcement to appoint him as its representative to debate with me.
“Also, this debate should be made an international event with the presence of the international media, such as CNN, Al Jazeera, BBC, Reuters, the Associated Press and the rest.
“I also want the moderator to be a neutral one from outside Malaysia, and official representatives of the British government and of the United Nations to be present.”
Jeffrey said these conditions are justified because the topic of the debate covered a vast number of local and international issues.
Among these issues were Sabah’s terms on joining with three other nations to form the Federation of Malaysia, the guarantees given for Sabah’s rights and autonomy including power over immigration and revenue collection.
Also on the table are the recommendations in the Inter-Government Committee (IGC) Report, the original intentions of the nation’s founding fathers and even the work of the Cobbold Commission.

1 comment:

  1. Wonderful Jef for being a courageous & open leader;You are a world's apart from Pairin,who is so cowed/buffalolised,that he should retire gracefully as the so-called Huguan Siou less he becomes a Luguan Talou.He is so mesmerized by power dan kekayaan, that from a Chief Minister he is prepared to kowtow to become just a Minister,he should be a TYT. Yes,now Harris should get the FDGovernment/Sabah Government to appoint as their Representative;the conditions as outlined by Jeffrey should be wholeheartedly complied with.All you genuine Sabahans,let us storm Heaven for our brother Jeffrey.


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