It’s utterly baffling.
It boggles the mind that when our fellow Malaysians in Sabah are exposed to the dangers of foreign imperialism — when Malaysia’s very sovereignty is under threat — there are still those who would rather waste time arguing over:
“Ni salah Najib ke, salah Tommy?”
To begin, I would like to address those who believe that we might have averted this crisis “if only Najib hadn’t stopped payments to Sulu in 2013.”
Put a stop to that straight away. Nobody is cheering for you to win your argument.
After witnessing the barbaric, vicious attacks and murders of our uniformed heroes in Lahad Datu, all good Malaysians, including the leaders of Pakatan, urged for an end to the Sulu cession payments in 2013.
Even Tommy Thomas admitted in a lengthy piece published by the Edge on July 27, 2022, that Malaysia should not have inherited the responsibilities of paying the $5,300 annual cession payment to Sulu from the British in 1963.
Yet, we did.
The Philippines objected to the formation of Malaysia at the time, and the Tunku was eager to please all parties. When the Philippines requested an annual cession payment, the Tunku agreed to make it ex-gratia. Ex-gratia means that the payment is made voluntarily and out of goodwill by us. We are not obligated to do so (and breaking it will not result in “Malaysia losing Sabah” or “Malaysia losing billions of dollars” like some claim).
Hence, Malaysia, as the voluntary party, has the authority to extend or discontinue any ex-gratia payments it has been making.
Second, research into the case has revealed that there are shadowy figures involved. There is the arbitrator Dr Gonzalo Stampa, who has been described as a “rogue” by the legal community for acting illegally and unethically; there have already been complaints filed against him for contempt of court and other violations.
And there’s also Therium, a “litigation funder” that funds lawsuits based on four criteria: the likelihood of success on the merits, the timing of recovery, the quantum of recovery, and the attorneys’ judgement.
Therium made the immoral choice to back the Sulu heirs’ line of action because they believed the Sulu heirs would have a good chance of successfully acquiring a sizeable portion of our nation or the monetary value of our nation.
If the lawsuit that Therium funded was successful, the company would ordinarily earn a portion of the settlement monies that their client got.
So please, everyone. Stop fighting among ourselves.
Given the numerous bizarre and questionable concerns, not to mention bloodsuckers, surrounding the Sulu claim to Sabah, would it not be preferable for Malaysian leaders from both ends of the political aisle to get together and develop a solution that permanently protects our country and the rakyat?