Sarawak Rangers – source of pride

File photo of the Sarawak Rangers.

KUCHING: The Sarawak Rangers Veteran Association (Persatuan Veteran Tentera Kor Renjer – PVTKR) urges all parties to reflect on the contributions made by the regiment in defending the state’s sovereignty.

Awang Raweng (left) and Mohd Melintang.

PVTKR president, Lt. Kol (B) Mohd Melintang Abdullah said Sarawak Rangers was an elite squad and should be remembered as a source of pride for Sarawakians on the occasion of Sarawak Day.

 “The origins and history of the PVTKR are tied to the founding of the Sarawak Rangers in 1841 during the Brooke’s administration.

“In 1862, Charles Brooke formed the Sarawak Rangers for the purpose of maintaining Sarawak security and was tasked with guarding the fort built by the Brooke government. They were initially known as ‘Fortman’ then the name was converted to Sarawak Rangers in 1862.

“The number of Sarawak Rangers members increased from 32 in October 1962 to 539 in December 1930, but due to financial problems that were insufficient to cover the expenses, the Sarawak Rangers were disbanded, then formed again during Japanese occupation in 1945,” he added.

Melintang remarked that after several decades the members of the Sarawak Rangers were absorbed into the Ranger Regiment after it was disbanded on September 15 1963.

“While fighting communist terrorists in Malaya, certain Sarawak Rangers carved a name for themselves as valiant warriors, such as Sergeant Datuk Awang Raweng, who was awarded the ‘George Cross’ on May 27, 1951 for his bravery.

“The Sarawak Rangers have created many great national heroes,” he said.

He pointed out that the battling spirit displayed by the Sarawak Rangers was clearly demonstrated in their motto ‘Agi Idup Agi Ngelaban!’.

Melintang wishes all Sarawakians a Happy Sarawak Independence Day and urged people to never forget the courage and sacrifices of the Sarawak Rangers in their fight against communism for the sovereignty of the nation, particularly of Sarawak.