KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 7 — Cameron Highlands MP Ramli Mohd Nor today said Barisan Nasional (BN) and Umno must not abandon or forget the deeds of the Orang Asli community towards nation-building.
Ramli, who spoke as the Umno Pahang delegate at the party’s annual general assembly here today, said the Orang Asli community deserves appreciation and consideration in mainstream national politics.
“As the Umno BN lawmaker who is of a peninsular Malaysia Orang Asli lineage, I implore the Barisan Nasional leadership not to ignore or forget us in the struggle of national politics even when Umno is in trouble.
Ramli also urged Umno and BN to do their part in strengthening Article 8 section 5 (C) of the Federal Constitution, which stipulates protection and equality for Orang Asli in the Malaysian Peninsular are protected.
“I humbly asked Umno BN to strengthen this provision. What we want is appreciation and not to be ignored,’’ he said.
Ramli also reminded delegates that the Orang Asli have played a major role in Malaya’s fight against colonial powers, including the assassination of JWW Birch, the first British Resident of Perak in 1875.
Ramli said the assassin, Si Putum was an Orang Asli for the Semai tribe who was also a staunch supporter of British resistance fighter Datuk Maharaja Lela.
Subsequently, Ramli also reminded that he, the first Orang Asli lawmaker was also from the Semai tribe.
“I again asked that Umno leaders and members not to ignore us in your struggle,’’ he said.
On January 27, Ramli won the Cameron Highland federal seat by securing 12,078 votes against lawyer M.Manogaran from Pakatan Harapan, his closest rival who scored 8,800 votes.