STAR founding president, Dr Patau Rubis, suffers deadly stroke during AGM

From Francis Paul Siah

21 March 2016

I shed a tear for my dear friend, Dr Patau Rubis, this morning as I recall what we had to go through in setting up Parti STAR in late 1995-96 but only managed to get it registered in 1997.

We suffered defeats after defeats in the ensuing years. I was defeated twice in Batu Lintang. Patau lost Tasik Biru to Peter Nansian in 1996 and Mas Gading to Dr Tiki Lafe in 1999. But the tough guy never gave up till the end.

His last act on Earth was to attend the party’s AGM. Patau was a fighter and a man of principle till his last breath.

I spoke to his son, Sean, this morning and extended my deepest sympathy to his mother, Tessie and sisters. Your Dad was a Bidayuh warrior and a great man, I told Sean.

To Dr Patau, it was an honour to serve as STAR’s first secretary-general, a post you insisted I took up in 1997. The ride in STAR was rough and wild but as we have always believe that “if it’s something worth the sacrifice, then let’s do it and leave the rest to God”. Rest well, my dear friend. We’ll meet again up in the heavenly STARS above.

(For public info: Dr Patau’s body is at his residence in Batu Kawa, Kuching. Burial is on Wed in his Bau kampong, March 23.) – fs

Dr Patau Rubis died after suffering from a stroke. — Picture from Patau's Facebook Dr Patau Rubis died after suffering from a stroke. — Picture from Patau’s Facebook

BY SULOK TAWIE

KUCHING, March 20 — State Reform Party (STAR) founding president Dr Patau Rubis passed away this afternoon after suffering a stroke at the party’s annual general meeting at a hotel here.

He was pronounced dead on arrival at the Sarawak General Hospital.

The party’s Sarawak executive committee member Alim Mideh, when contacted by Malay Mail Online, said Dr Patau lost consciousness at about 4.20pm and that just seconds before collapsing, the 70-year-old asked him to grab his hands.

“I managed to prevent him from falling off his seat,” Alim said, adding he and other party members tried to revive Dr Patau but failed.

He said an ambulance arrived about 30 minutes later to take Dr Patau to the hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Alim said Dr Patau, who was formerly a state assistant minister, suffered from the stroke just before the party was about to elect new office bearers for the 2016-2021 term.

“There was much argument then among the party members, and that is to be expected in any political party,” he said.

“It was at this time that Dr Patau asked me to hold his hands. Suddenly, he lost consciousness,” he added.

At the time of writing, Dr Patau’s remains were still at the Accident and Emergency Unit of the SGH.

Dr Patau and his supporters formed STAR in 1996 after he was sacked from Sarawak National Party (SNAP) and as an assistant minister in 1995.

He was a federal lawmaker for Mas Gading from 1986 to 1999 and a state lawmaker for Tasik Biru from 1983 to 1996.

Prior to entering politics in 1982,  Patau was the deputy director of the Sarawak Health Department. – Malay Mail Online

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