Sunday March 10, 2013
Apprehension lingers over reprisal attacks from intruders
unsure how the Tanduo bombing and the Semporna attack will change their peaceful lives.
Bajau villager Damin Abdullah, 34, who sells gravestones and is a father of eight, said he was not sure if things would get better and was worried about how to feed his family.
“I am not sure how my life will change. I don’t know if it will be permanent, but I am worried,” said Semporna villager Mohd Farid, 17.
Several other Filipinos of Suluk origin said that they have been receiving text messages from their relatives and friends in southern Philippines to support the intruders but have ignored such messages.
“We are loyal Malaysians. Our loyalty is to the Yang di-Pertuan Agong and Yang di-Pertua Negeri,’’ said Abdul Rahman Datu Ismail, who heads the Sabah Ethnic Suluk Association.
“The act of terror caught us by surprise. We are deeply saddened by what is happening,’’ he said, adding that it would have a negative effect on the local Suluk community who despise the acts of violence against police personnel whose families are now grieving.
“Although life has been crawling back to normal in many of the east coast towns, apprehension lingers over reprisal attacks from intruders across the border,” he said.
Semporna Travel and Tour Operator Association chairman Ramsyah Abdul Hamid, 40, said he hoped that people would not be wary of local Suluks as few could tell them apart from the intruders.