By Musa Ngog
COMMENT In my battle for the Tarat state seat, I lost more than half of the total votes in my own village and even I lost votes from my own relatives.
It is not a total surprise since some are so scared of me due to my stand in my political struggle.
I lost badly in Dunuk, the place where I grew up, Bisira; where I have my cousins, nieces and of course my close relatives from my father’s side. I also lost half of the votes in Marakep, the place of origin of my father. I lost in all the rural polling districts.
I saw fear in them when they are not allowed to hang on my posters and flags. Even I saw the impressions of uneasiness on my cousin’s face when I visited him to ask for help to hang my posters.
They fear being sidelined from all the goodies and assistance given by the Barisan National. Indeed, poverty doesn’t have power to make a change, since fear is always the enemy of change.
A few days before the Sarawak election last Saturday, I was asked if I could give some money to them as they expected this from the BN. A sum of RM30 or more per vote, they said, would confirmed votes for me.
I told them that I cannot afford that, for I am running with limited funding from the party and gifts of love from friends, relatives and church members.
A group of youngsters asked for a few bottles of liqour and beers to have their votes. A man with red eyes and stinky breath came by and told me that I will never have his vote since I refuse to give a few shots of Tequila Sunrise. All I know is that I won’t change anything if I ever let them continue to get drunk and don’t go to work.
Not allowed to bring posters into village
I was given 15 minutes to walk around one village, but not allowed to bring my posters and flags. I got a stern warning to not campaign among my friends and relatives. I see oppressing power, arrogance and disrespect for politics by Umno-BN.
One of my team members was intimidated and almost got a punch on his face for being a Malayan and helping help me along in the campaign.
We were approached by an assistant of a ketua kampung and he asked us to leave the village because the ketua kampung asked him to tell us so. He hates ‘Malaya’ over the issue of the use of the term ‘Allah’ by Christians.
I couldn’t say much for his ignorance, since his angry face didn’t show an invitation of a second opinion.
On the way back to the operation room, a man stopped us and almost swung a punch on one of my team members. Indeed, to them, Malaya is a bad name for an opposition party but a saviour for Najib and Umno-BN.
I should have given the voters free meals for straight 10 days and nights. I should have given beers, liqour and pork to win the votes. But can I make a change by doing these things?
During the campaigning period, I saw fear, oppression, ignorance and so much poverty, greed and arrogance. Yet, we marched on with courage and love because we cannot leave them behind.
I believe the 3,024 votes that were given to me were from church members, former classmates, friends and relatives who believe in fairness, justice, liberty and good governance.
Till then, I will never get tired and give up. This is not about an election itself, but a long struggle that only a few people can endure; the struggle to plant hope and work for change.
I will never surrender to ignorance, oppression, tyranny and greed. This is a noble struggle that the disciples had to go through to bring hope to the world.
Loving can be so hurtful, but it brings good things to those who give it to others.
Thank you, once again, to all the voters out there who were brave enough to make a change.
We lost the election, but we won the love of God and gave hope to so many.
You are not alone! God bless you.
MUSA NGOG, an IT support engineer, runs his Facebook page at #All4Sarawak.