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Who Are the Bajau Laut and Why Destroy Their Houses?

Wan Shakila Adiela Wan Azmi, Borneo Komrad

20-Jun-24 15:00

Who Are the Bajau Laut and Why Destroy Their Houses?

Recently, the Bajau Laut community in Semporna, Sabah were evicted from their homes by authorities. The Indigenous stateless population saw their stilt and boathouses demolished and burned down, leaving them with nothing and nowhere to go.

So, why was this done? Is it because of national and state security, a reason so often given by the political elites? Well, a few days after the eviction, news broke that a 21-acre Housing and Urban Development Board (LPPB) land in Kampung Air, Semporna will be turned into a RM478 million township, to meet tourist demands.

So, what does peace and justice for the Bajau Laut community look like?

We speak to Wan Shakila Adiela Wan Azmi, Member of Borneo Komrad. Borneo Komrad is an initiative organization of students and young people from Sabah to build social advocacy such as education, culture and human rights. They run a school called 'Sekolah Alternatif' to empower Bajau Laut children and teenagers.

Produced by: Dashran Yohan

Presented by: Dashran Yohan

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Categories:  politicsgovernmentLaw/Activism

Tags:  the bigger picturebeyond the ballot boxbajau lautindigenousstateless

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