Getting historical facts right

I’m proud that Sabah was one of the countries to form Malaysia, as opposed to joining Malaysia.

ON Twitter, in a tweet in which I was tagged, someone asked the Government to take action against Sabahans wearing black T-shirts as part of a campaign to make known historical facts to Malaysians.

Tangkap penghasut dengan segera! No Mercy. Kembalikan ISA (Arrest the agitator immediately! No Mercy. Bring back ISA),” said the tweet that included a photograph of the offending T-shirt.

On the back of the T-shirt was written: “We must know. 31 August 1963: Sabah independence. 31 August 1957: Malaya independence. 16 September 1963: formation of Malaysia (Malaysia Day).”

I replied: “Factually correct.”

Historically cornered, the twitterer tweeted, “Kamu dah kibar bendera jalur gemilang ke belum?” (Have you flown the Malaysian flag yet?)

Victorious but magnanimous, I decided not to entertain the historically challenged twitterer.

That twitterer probably got agitated when he saw, “31 August 1963: Sabah independence”. He probably thought that it was seditious to make that claim. He didn’t know that on Aug 31, 1963, the British granted self-government to North Borneo. Two weeks later, on Sept 16, Sabah (North Borneo), Sarawak, Singapore and Malaya formed the Federation of Malaysia.


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