In a sharp contrast to my earlier posting `Merdeka and Malaysia Day' Sabah Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Joseph Pairin Kitingan has now re-tuned his views of the formation of Malaysia. In my earlier posting, I quoted Pairin's speech (on Sept 16, 1988) in which he strongly stated that there was no Malaysia before Sept 16, 1963.
Now Pairin is teaching us history by saying that Sabah and Sarawak were already self-governing states 44 years ago on Aug 31, 1963. He said this meant that both States were already independent for 15 days until Sept 15, 1963, followed by the declaration of Malaysia the following day , involving Sabah, Sarawak, Singapore and 11 States in Malaya.
On the 50th Merdeka celebrtion, Pairin said Malaya had freed itself from the colonial yolk on Aug 31, 1957, and Sabah joined in the joys of independence well in advance.
A bit confusing but I am happy that Pairin, whose political party - Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) - had rejoined the National Coalition (Barisan Nasional), still maintained that Malaysia was only born on Sept 16, 1963. The people of Sabah must also say `thank you' to Pairin for having gazetted Sept 16 a Public Holiday to celebrate Malaysia Day and the Yang Dipertua Negeri's (Head of State) official birthday.
Still I must say that Pairin is now dancing a different tune compared to while his PBS party was at the helm of the State Government and that he was the Chief Minister. And of course in 1988, he was heading an Opposition State Government. Now Pairin is back in the BN's fold.