Monday, 9 July 2007

Tun Datu Haji Mustapha Bin Datu Harun

The former residence of Sabah's first Governor and third Chief Minister Tun Mustapha in Tanjung Aru, a stone throw from Kota Kinabalu City centre had been auction for just RM1.6 million reportedly to settle debts.

When news of the auction was published in the Daily Express several individuals had voiced out and called for the State Government to secure the four-bedroom bungalow to be turned into a museum. There was also calls for Yayasan Sabah (of which the Tun was instrumental in its establishment) to buy out the house from the Kuala Lumpur Chinese businessman (who successfully bid for the house) to be turned into a museum.

This house is to be turned by it new owner into a restaurant.

The house seated on a 0.7 hectares area bought by Tun Mustapha from a Chinese owner in 1969 had its share of history. First Malaysia Prime Minister Tunku Abdul Rahman, Queen Elizabeth 11, Sultans, and boxing legend Muhammad Ali had either stayed or been guests to this house.

My Say:

This is a State heritage that must be saved and preserved like what was done to the former residence of Sir Frank Swettenham, now known as Carcosa Seri Negara in Kuala Lumpur. Being a journalist, I had on several occasions been to Tun Mustapha's residence, sometimes at night, to attend his Press conferences during his hey days of politics. In all occasions, he made sure that all journalists were served with coffee/tea and his trademark kuieh lapis before hearing to what he had to say.

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