Sunday, January 13, 2008


A scene that belies the brisk life of Kota Marudu town


The brisk life of the town here which unfolds as soon as the day breaks is an interesting scene to behold. For a visiting person, one may be amused at the sight of the town with its multi-coloured and multifaceted people with differing activities. Some people are just strolling, others are going in and out of shops to have a view of what they can buy at bargaining prices or having a taste of the local dishes at the restaurants. While strolling along the shops pavement, I suddenly stumbled upon an unsightly scene. There on the sidewalk lay sprawling a woman, possibly in her 40s, with badly disheveled clothes. A distasteful sight indeed. How on earth a place like Kota Marudu being marred by a rare sight such as this. The woman laid out her belongings and ragged clothing as well as a piece of cloth as her sleeping mattress along the shop’s sidewalk as if the sidewalk was hers and obstructing passers-by during broad daylight. Driven by curiosity, I blurted out some questions to the woman. The woman in a slow but confident rhetoric said that she was from Kg. Marabahai, Kudat and her name was Bikah Bte Taha. “I barely remember my village or my relatives after my heed was hit by an object a few years back. I also forget where my village lies,” said Bikah, appearing confused. According to a passer-by from Kudat, Bikah was actually a normal housewife but since she was divorced by her husband, she had left for the city life of Kota Kinabalu for several years and he never saw her since. “But an unknown twist of fortune made her like this. I personally do not know what had happened to her but obviously she had changed,” said the man who declined to give his name. “I hope the Welfare or Social Services Department will house her in a proper welfare home or rehabilitation centre very soon,” the man said before departing.