The hidden story no one knows about.

Right. I bet everyone feels the same as me, we’re already in the mid of March! What have we done for the past two months? 2018 seems to be flying off the orbital line swiftly in a blink of an eye.

I’ve been busy due to piles of work in the office. But hey, I had an opportunity to explore a new discovery which is something I never think of in the past.

Mabul Island, Sabah. You know how this island is deemed to be so eye-catching for sea lovers out there to enjoy the crystal-clear seawater and smooth breeze around the island. I, too, in the first place adore the island at the eastern part of Malaysia located in Semporna.

But…. Not many of us have told us a hidden story behind closed doors and now it still remains a big issue. I mean, really an issue to be added up into the list of political or even national issues involving human! As unique as its name says, Mabul Island is where many refugees have accommodated the small land for many decades already.

In the last few days, I was on-duty or simply in charge to take part in a trip for some community visit and Mabul Island was one of the destinations required along the journey. Astounded to have seen the picturesque view with my naked eyes but however, what made my heart feel a tad bit sad is that, many and many people whose citizenship is not recognised have to survive in the island. My glaring question now, how long is this issue going to remain unresolved?

They’re also entitled to human rights like us; shelter, education, job, and many others. Of course I’m not saying that we should be blindly granting them a citizenship for it will cause a lot more problems. But don’t you think some people at high level should make a move to resolve the issue?

In Mabul Island, there exists a few types of communities namely the locals from Sabah, sea-gypsies or better known as Pala’u, and refugees of the Suluk people originated from Philippines.

To date, there are over 3,000 people in the island which can be sub-clustered into 580 families. It is hard to differentiate either one is a local as they look all the same.

ONE FUN FACT: Their habit is the same. Except for Pala’u people who prefer to live on the seawater.

If you were to ask me if it’s safe to have some cutie-sweetie time in the island, my advice will soundly ask you to be in a group of four for the sake of your safety. Observant enough, I can also say that the people are friendly there and most of the time, they will smile at you if you greet them nicely.

But of course Mabul Island is a must-go destination because of its uniqueness and beauty served as the main attraction. What I was trying to point out, Mabul isn’t just a usual island that you would see on the Internet (google image) alone, there are hidden secrets to be discovered and it’s interesting!

Till then~

Written by Mr Aqashah

A humanitarian journalist finding his own pathway into the future.

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