views it as his duty to accept Huguan Siou title
Sunday, 6 July 2003 (Source: Bernama)
Kadazandusun Cultural Association (KDCA) President Datuk
Joseph Pairin Kitingan said he accepted the title of "Huguan
Siou" or the paramount chief of the Kadazandusun in 1984
because he viewed it as his duty to the community.
He said that those who questioned his title were entitled
to do so but as the paramount chief he carried on with his
duty to unite the Kadazandusun and fight for their interest.
Pairin said he did not ask for the title and in fact at
one time he declined when it was offered to him.
"I wasn't look for fame and position because the title is
not something you can ask for. In fact, when I was offered
the title I had suggested that it be given (to another Sabah
political figure) Datuk Dr James Ongkili.
"But he too rejected it and suggested instead another person,
namely (the then Sabah Chief Minister) Datuk Harris Salleh,"
he told reporters at Nunuk Ragang, some 55km from here after
attending the 19th anniversary of Huguan Siou.
"Our people were certainly not happy about it. Finally,
when it was offered again to me, I accepted because considering
the situation then, I felt it was my social obligation to
accept it," he said.
Pairin was asked to comment on the views of late of some
people in Sabah, questioning the role played by the "Huguan
Siou" in the Kadazandusun community.
He said the KDCA offered him the title because he was considered
to have met certain characteristics of a potential chief.
Huguan Siou is the highest title in the Kadazandusun community,
given only to a member who fufills all or almost all of
the characteristics of a Huguan Siou -- the defender of
the community's culture, rights, identity and dignity.
It is also a title for life and cannot be used by another