KOTA KINABALU: Controversial Sabah Mufti Bongsu @ Aziz Jaafar said he is prepared to apologise to the Kadazandusun community if his alleged statement that Kadazandusuns was an ``invented race’’ was interpreted differently.
Breaking his silence through a brief statement, he said that it was not his intention to offend any racial and ethnic groups in Sabah as he himself was of ethnic Brunei and Dusun heritage.
In conjunction with Hari Raya Aidiladha on Tuesday, Bungsu said that it would not be wrong for him to seek forgiveness like how all the races in the country normally did.
Bungsu, who has been on leave since uttering the alleged claim last month had said that the term Kadazandusun was a newly invented name and called for the “Malaynising” of Sabah’s indigenous Muslim bumiputras.
His claims at a ``Malay Leadership Crisis’’ symposium in Putrajaya triggered backlash and demands of apology by local Sabahan leaders.
Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Musa Aman said the state viewed race and religion as separate matters.
The Kadazan Society Sabah (KSS) last week filed a customary summon at the Penampang district native court against Bungsu for insulting and humiliating Kadazan community.
Known as ``saman malu’’, the summon was filed by KSS deputy president, Sylvester Disimond at the Penampang district chief office of OKK (Orang Kaya Kaya) Christoper Mojungkim.
Bongsu is expected to be called in by the native court to answer the charges and if found guilty could be fined the value of an animal such as a buffalo.
Many Sabahans reacted against Bungsu’s statement by turning to the Facebook where they proclaimed their ethnicities.They posted photographs of themselves holding a piece of paper scrawled with the words “Proud to be Kadazandusun” or any other ethnic group in the state.