NGO says let state government handle stateless people in Sabah

KOTA KINABALU: A non-governmental organisation here is asking outsiders, especially those with little knowledge of Sabah’s demography, to leave the issue of stateless people to the state government to handle.

Pertubuhan Angkatan Gabungan Rakyat Sabah (Agaras) said that of late, there were overtures from a group named Semboyan, going around claiming to be the voice of the stateless people in the country.

Agaras president Datuk Michael Frederick said the way these organisations work do not fit in with how Sabahans operate.

He said their methods were deemed threatening and could disrupt the peace and harmony enjoyed by the people in Sabah.

“We will not hesitate to lodge reports against these movements if they start using religion, race and statelessness as the basis of their ideologies,” he said.

On the issue of statelessness in Sabah, Frederick said the state as well as the federal governments and agencies have their own laws and jurisdictions to handle matters that arise.

“We are also hoping that the government and the national agencies involved in these matters can help us solve this parenniel issue, but we do not need outsiders to meddle with what they have no right over,” he said.

He also called upon the National Unity Minister to come down hard on those playing up racial and religious sentiments, and on anyone disrupting the peace and harmony in Sabah.

Recently, Semboyan had made videos about Sabah’s stateless children, among other matters.

Semboyan claimed that they were only voicing out issues on behalf of these people, who it said were the victims of strife (for the Filipino refugees with the IMM13 documents in Sabah) and political chaos, among others. ENDS

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Stateless , NGO , Sabah , Michael Frederick , Agaras


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