Tambunan folks punished for kicking out Berjaya
Published on: Saturday, May 21, 2022
By: Daily Express
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Pairin and James

(Sunday, December 25, 1994)

1984: Independent candidate Datuk Joseph Pairin Kitingan retained his Tambunan State Assembly seat by defeating Barisan Nasional’s Roger Ongkili in a by-election.

Pairin polled 3,685 votes over Roger’s 637. The by-poll followed Pairin’s resignation from the ruling Berjaya, of which he had been a Vice President.

Following the dismal showing, Berjaya decided to close its Tambunan division. Berjaya Deputy President Datuk Dr James Ongkili said since only 637 of the 4,474 people who cast their votes supported Berjaya, it would be meaningless to keep the party’d division there.

“This also means that the Independent candidate and his supporters will be given the opportunity to look after the people of Tambunan without help of the Berjaya Government. From the results of the election, they should not expect any help,” Datuk Dr James said.

December 30

1963: Eight members of the security forces and one civilian were killed in an ambush by Indonesian terrorists at a police post in Kalabakan, 30 miles from Tawau.

Nineteen members of the security forces and five civilians were also injured in the encounter which lasted nearly three hours.

The number of Indonesian casualties were not yet determined but at least two are believed to have been killed and another on critical condition.

ASP Henry Chin said a 48-hour curfew was enforced within Tawau. It was reliably learnt that the Indonesian terrorists were well armed with machine guns and grenades.

Breakout by five Jesselton convicts

1963: Five Prisoners escaped from Jesselton prison by hacking away the iron bars of their prison block and scaling a 20-foot wall.

Of the five, one of them was serving sentence for his role in Brunei’s rebellion. The rest were pirates.

December 26

Taha first Sabahan to get a Ph.D

1979: Education Officer Hasbullah Taha became the first Sabahans to earn a Ph.D when he obtained one for Educational Leadership from the Southern Illinion University-Carbondale (SUIC).

He was among 100 Malaysian students attending SUIC under an Education Ministry programme aimed at upgrading the abilities of Malaysian educators and administrators.

Usno’s first anniversary

1962: The United Sabah National Organisation (Usno) marked its first anniversary with a satay party in Kudat.

Party President OKK Datu Mustapha Datu Harun congratulated those who were successful in the first local elections. “As it is the first elections held in North Borneo, I hope there would be no ill feelings among candidates who stood and lost,” he said.

Mustapha said the Usno headquarters would be moved to Jesselton before the end of the month.

December 27

MAS DC10 gets stuck in mud at runway

1982: The Kota Kinabalu International Airport was closed to Boeing and other big aircraft after an MAS DC-10 got stuck in mud at one end of the runway before a scheduled flight to Singapore and Kuala Lumpur.

The nose wheel had apparently gotten off the edge of the runway and got stuck in the mud while attempting a U-turn.

The 255 passengers were taken back to the transit lounge, while MAS engineers and ground crew tried to jack up the wheel to get it back on the runway. The flight took off only 15 hours later.

The plane’s entire crew were summoned to MAS headquarters in Kuala Lumpur.  The Captain of the plane was suspended.

December 29

First B707 to land at KK airport

1971: The first Boeing 707 touched down at the Kota Kinabalu International Airport.

The aircraft later left with a full load of pilgrims heading for Jeddah.

TV service launched in Sabah

1971: Chief Minister Tun Datu Haji Mustapha officially launched TV Malaysia’s Sabah operations and said the aim was to unite the people of various races in the State.

He said television is an important medium in creating a national identity.

Mustapha said the introduction of television to the State was among the major programmes implemented by the State Government after the 1967 elections. 

He said other plans included changing the name of Jesselton to Kota Kinabalu, setting up the Land Development Board, Padi Board and Housing Commission and Rural Administrative Board.

On Television, Mustapha said the State Government contributed RM25m to the Federal Government to meet the project’s cost.

He was also confident that the Government’s objective of uniting the various races in the State would be achieved through television which uses Bahasa Malaysia as the language medium.

Among those present were Minister of Special Functions and Information Tan Sri Ghazali Shafie, Minister of Works, Posts and Telecommunications Tun VY Sambanthan and High Commissioner to Australia Tan Sri Fuad Stephens.


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