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Sunday November 3, 2013 MYT 12:00:00 AM
Sunday November 3, 2013 MYT 7:07:10 AM
by ruben sario
KOTA KINABALU: Outsiders should appreciate and accept the unique traits of Sabahans – including the fact that their names may not reflect their professed faith and religion, said Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Yahya Hussin.
He said not everyone with the name Muhammad was a Muslim or a person who had the name David was a Christian, and he personally knew of people who had Muslim-sounding names but were actually Christians.
What Sabahans wear, he said, could also be confusing to those unfamiliar with the state.
Citing an example, Yahya said in the remote northeast district of Paitan, there were people who wore songkok but were not Muslims.
“Only Sabahans understand Sabah culture. This is our culture. We are a multi-cultural lot and we accept each other regardless of race or religion,” he said.
He said it was for this reason Sabahans were able to live with each other in harmony.
“Sometimes we make the mistake of assuming that only race matters even after 50 years of independence,” said Yahya after presenting 1Malaysia computers to students in Putatan near here yesterday.
He said those from outside the state should be forgiven for their initial confusion over Sabah’s culture which they should adapt to and accept its uniqueness.
“This is how it has been since the beginning. That is why we are careful not to insult anybody. Not everyone standing before you is a Muslim and not everybody in front of you is a Christian,” he said.
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