Why can’t the Dayak and Momogun be combined as a new classification in all government official forms?

By Datuk Henrynus Amin
Former President Momogun National Congress (MNC)

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President, Parti Kerjasama Anak Negeri (Anak Negeri)

RANAU: The broader use of the Dayak identity to include not only the various Dayak tribes in Sarawak but also the dusunic murutic and paitanic tribal groups in Sabah is an ideal solution for the purpose of classification in government official forms if indeed acceptable to all relevant ethnic associations in Sabah and Sarawak.

Datuk Henrynus Amin, who is formerly the President of Momogun National Congress (MNC), said this in response to the statement by KDCA Deputy President Datuk Dr Jeffrey Kitingan, who said he preferred the term Dayak to be used in government official forms.

Henrynus, however, expressed serious doubt ethnic associations in Sabah such as the Kadazandusun Cultural Association (KDCA), Kadazan Society Sabah (KSS) and United Dusun Association (USDA) who are vehemently opposed to the use of Momogun will agree to Jeffrey’s proposal to replace Kadazandusun or Kadazan or Dusun with “Dayak” as their collective identity and a new classification in government official forms.

He said, while there is already a broad consensus in Sarawak among the Iban, Bidayuh, Bisaya, Lumbawang, Kenyah, Kayan, Penan, etc ethnic communities to adopt Dayak as their national identity, there is still no such consensus among the dusunic murutic and paitanic tribal community in Sabah to adopt a common identity for the purpose of classification in government official forms.

Henrynus therefore asked Jeffrey to reconsider his position against the use of Momogun as a national identity and a new classification in government official form for the dusunic murutic and paitanic indigenous community to replace the given acronym KDMRS.

“Personally, I have no objection to the use of the term Dayak to refer to Kadazandusun Murut and Sungai since it also means people indigenous to Borneo.”

“But it is a unrealistic to assume there is already or there will be a consensus on the matter in the immediate future.”

For the record, he said, the term Momogun was proposed and adopted during the initial formation of the Momogun National Congress (MNC) as a compromise among various options discussed including use of the term Dayak, Kadazan and Dusun.

He said Momogun was selected as a more realistic option since it was in line with the concept of Pasok Momogun to refer to the indigenous dusunic murutic and paitanic tribal community in Sabah.

He said Pasok Momogun was shortened to Momogun as used by the northern dusunic community namely Rungus and Kimaragang to refer to themselves.

Further he said the use of the term “Momogun” to refer to the the Kadazan Dusun and Murut tribal groups in Sabah is also a well documented fact.

He said for Momogun to be adopted as the collective identity of the dusunic murutic and paitanic tribal groups, the relevant state ordinances and enactments must be amended to that effect.

“There is no reason to reject Momogun as a new classification in government official forms as it is a term understood and used by the dusunic murutic and paitanic tribal community in Sabah.”

He said Dayak and Momogun mean the same thing, as they are both indigenous to Borneo and both share common geographical origins, culture, language and history.

“If Dayak is acceptable in Sarawak and Momogun in Sabah, Henrynus said, he sees no reason why the Dayak and Momogun cannot be combined as a new classification in all government official forms.

“Since the Dayak and Momogun people collectively constitute about 3 million in both Sabah and Sarawak, they should be given due recognition and given a new classification in government official forms under the name “Dayak/ Momogun.”

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