Two Moro Fighters in Sabah Were Jabidah Survivors

TAWI-TAWI-- Two of the members of the Royal Sultanate Army (or the Royal Sultanate Force), Musa Abdulla and Ernesto Sambas, that trooped to Sabah last Feb. 14 were survivors of the Jabidah commando unit formed as part of Ferdinand Marcos' secret plot to invade Sabah four decades ago, reports Abdulla and Sambas were among at least 13 Simunul residents who boarded two ships to Lahad Datu, along with about 200 of their comrades. Oplan Merdeka (freedom in Bahasa Melayu) was hatched by the Marcos military in 1968, but it was exposed, souring relations between Manila and Kuala Lumpur, prompting the latter to train and provide sanctuary to rebels belonging to the Moro National Liberation Front. Abdulla and Sambas were able to escape from Corregidor Island in 1968 before the military shot dead their fellow recruits in a massacre that lit the Muslim rebellion in Mindanao. Their fate as a result of the recent fighting is not known.