Thursday February 14, 2013
Cultural body wants to sort out Huguan Siou conferral
By RUBEN SARIO
KOTA KINABALU: Sabah's main Kadazandusun cultural body is probing reports of Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's alleged conferment of the Huguan Siou title.
Kadazandusun Cultural Association (KDCA) executive secretary Benedict Topin said it had asked those at Kampung Paginatan in the interior Ranau district where Anwar was said to have been declared the community's paramount leader to give details.
“We are gathering facts on what happened. Then we will hold a meeting of our committee members,” he said when contacted yesterday.
He added that the association viewed the incident seriously.
“All of us Kadazandusun and Murut must unite and defend the integrity of our culture,” said Benedict.
The KDCA is headed by Deputy Chief Minister Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan, who was conferred the life-long Huguan Siou title by bobolian or Kadazandusun priestesses in 1984.
Photographs of Anwar donning traditional headgear and a sash bearing the words Huguan Siou have caused an uproar among Sabahans, with many in the Kadazandusun community saying they felt insulted.
The photographs were posted by Ranau PKR chief Jonathan Yasin on his Facebook page.
Anwar, however, denied he had been bestowed the title.
PKR's would-be political partner Tuaran MP Datuk Wilfred Bumburing's ad hoc movement Angkatan Perubahan Sabah (APS) has demanded an explanation.
APS spokesman Lesaya Lopog Sorudim said they wanted to know how the title could be given to someone not of Kadazandusun descent.
He said the Huguan Siou title could only be held by one person.
“No one on any side of the political divide can declare someone else Huguan Siou,” Lesaya said.