South China Morning Post published today my news profile-analysis of Sultan Jamalul Kiram III and the Sabah issue.
My thanks to my editor Andrew London, and Hari Kumar who subbed the piece prior to publication.
My thanks, too, to @Eldes Tran – SCMP’s online news producer for posting my piece on Twitter.
Sultan of Sulu Jamalul Kiram III continues to fight for Sabah
Jamalul Kiram III has taken his demand for the Malaysian state to be given back to his family to the next level, with deadly results
Sunday, 03 March, 2013, 12:00am
When the Moro Islamic Liberation Front rebels signed a framework peace agreement at the Philippine presidential palace last October, one man in the jam-packed Heroes Hall did not join in the jubilation.
That man was 75-year-old Jamalul Kiram III, who was invited to represent the Sultanate of Sulu in the southern Philippines. He comes from a once-wealthy ruling clan that traces its lineage back to the 15th century and what is now Malaysia’s Sabah state.
Kiram was offended that neither Philippine President Benigno Aquino nor Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak had acknowledged his presence.
That royal snub, along with persistent reports of Kiram’s supporters being flogged and deported once again from Sabah, was what drove dozens of his followers to sail from their remote Philippine islands last month to press his claim.
It wasn’t an invasion, Kiram insisted, but a coming home.
“Sabah is ours,” he said, referring to the oil-rich state.
The group representing itself as a royal militia in the service of Kiram arrived by boat on February 12 to re-establish its long-dormant claim to the North Borneo area. The ensuing stand-off with Malaysian authorities erupted into violence on Friday, leaving 14 people dead.
Little of the fabled wealth Kiram’s family once owned is evident in the modest two-storey house in Maharlika Village that he calls home. The village is full of refugees from the decades-long Muslim rebel conflict in Mindanao.
From the statements of Kiram, his relatives and Philippine government documents, there emerges the colourful history of how his family has tried to reassert ownership over Sabah. To this day, the Malaysian embassy in Manila delivers a yearly payment – the equivalent of 5,300 ringgit (HK$13,300).
An exasperated Kiram told Aquino: “Mr President, what more proof do you want us to show that Sabah is ours? By the mere fact that Malaysia is paying us annually in the amount of 5,300 Malaysia ringgit, is it not enough?”
Ten years ago, Malaysia’s ambassador to Manila, Mohamed Taufik, confirmed this arrangement when he told the Sunday Morning Post: “I recently paid 5,000 ringgit to the Kiram family. It’s rather miniscule – around 70,000 pesos.” He said “the rent is still being paid but it doesn’t mean we recognise” the family’s ownership.
To read the rest, pls. click on this link.
I will be posting more on the Sabah issue.
I will also be posting on the Intellectual Property Code amendments and our coming elections.
@17 Did you know Sultan . . .
“With the death of Jamalul II, his brother Mawalil succeeded him but died suddenly six months later – again allegedly from poisoning. Mawalil’s son Esmail became sultan.
“In 1962, he ceded “full sovereignty, title and dominion” over Sabah to the Philippine government.”
But you did not mention that in 1989, Sultan Jamalul Kiram III “revoked the resolution of August 1962 regarding the transfer of title and sovereignty to the Republic of the Philippines.”
Is it because Sultan Jamalul Kiram III, until today, is merely one of the claimants as ruler of the Sultanate after the death of the legitimate ruler, Sultan Mahakuttah Kiram, in 1986? Meaning that the “revocation” done by Sultan Kiram III could not supersede the grant done by Sultan Esmail Kiram. In effect the “full sovereignty, title and dominion” over Sabah is still with the Philippine government.
The recent pronouncement by Sultan Jamalul Kiram III that the Philippine government has sovereignty over Sabah contradicts his own act revoking the same in 1989. In other words he, among the claimants to the throne, has no right to demand help from the Philippine government by exercising its sovereignty over Sabah NOW.
Victin Luz says
Ganoon naman pala ang nangyari so he goes alone ” kuno ” in Sabah with armed followers/relatives and whose backing’s coming from Manila elites having a vested interest on the PICNIC turned bloody shootings incidents.
the sultan’s mind is like a sieve, full of holes. his long term memory is mostly jumbled, and doesn’t have good memory of historic past. diabetes probably did it to him, numbed off some of his brain cells. he’s not thinking straight.
also, they did not mention that the sultan has declared sulu free and independent state in november 2010. the sultan should be statesman enough, fully responsible for his holdings and do his own negotiations. his brother and crown prince have led the armed incursion into malaysia, they are already there and could negotiate on the sultan’s behalf. so why dont they? they just want to draw PNoy into trouble this election year.
Victin Luz says
Tama ka [email protected], ….if PNOY moves wrong on the latest Sabah PICNIC , he will be pounded left and right , front and rear …he he sorry they can not corrupt PNOY…. The former HUETING QUEEN , TING TING can not also get what she wants …..so ….. Solsol na lang sila ng solsol baka sakaling makahabol sa survey he he si TINGTING…
ay, kabaasa ko lang sa abs-cbnnews.com na yong dialysis at medical bills daw ni sultan kiram ay sagot ng gobyerno, the money came from PCSO, phil. charity sweepstakes office. the question is how could the sultan fund the armed incursion into malaysia, rent the big boats that took his followers over there when he rarely have money for his hospitalization?
… i agree with Mel (#4.2)… i wish the heirs would come up with a document signed by the clan designating a leader to speak and sign for all the claimants so that the Malaysian govt won’t have an excuse as to whom to talk to with regard to said ownership of land. And since the Kirams acknowledged that the land or territory in question is also owned by the Philippines then let the Philippine govt stand as a witness to this dialog, if ever there will be one.
Victin Luz says
If the KIRAMs owe allegiance to the Philippines then let us be witness to their dialog. But with regards to sovereignty ( Phil. Govnt. Ownersip of Sabah ) WAG NA TAYONG MAKIRAWRAW DYAN. Nag referendum na sila SABAHANs and elected to be under Federation of Malaya, bakit pa tayo sasali sa gulo nila e ang linaw naman na PROPRIETY RIGHTS ang pinaglalabanan nila at GUSTO nilang ISALI TAYO ng mg KIRAM.