Magnitude 6.0 Earthquake Strikes Malaysia’s Borneo Island
A 6.0-magnitude earthquake struck near Malaysia’s Mount Kinabalu on Borneo on Friday, cracking roads and buildings in the region and injuring climbers on the popular peak and some feared dead. Malaysia is on a school break and Mount Kinabalu’s peak had at least 200 climbers on it at the time of the quake.
The iconic Donkey’s Ear Peak at Mount Kinabalu has been destroyed. The twin peak landmark resembling a pair of donkey’s ears has been badly damaged, with the top of one of the peaks falling off.
Locals were saying that the recent incident of naked, urinating tourists at the sacred mountain made “mountain spirits mad”
Mount Kinabalu is sacred to the local Kadazun Dusun tribal group and considered a resting place for departed spirits.
Shame on you! Bunch of naked donkeys made the mountain spirits mad and now, we lost the iconic donkey’s ear 🙂
Couple of weeks ago, during Mount Kinabalu climbing expedition, 10 from a group of 27 tourists, broke away to take nude photos. The tourists ignored the warnings from their mountain guide, calling him “stupid” and telling him to “go to hell”, when he pleaded with them to stop as they took off all their clothes and posed for pictures.
Those who have been identified are Canadians Lindsey and Danielle Peterson, Dutch citizens Dylan Thomas and Eleanor Hawrins. Four tourists are in jail and will be charged soon. The authorities are still looking for the other 6!
On Friday, the court sentenced them to three days in jail and a fine of 5,000 ringgit ($1,330) each, to be followed by their deportation, it said. They will be released after they pay the fines because of the time they have already spent in jail since their arrests earlier this week.
A Malaysian tribal chief has called on Western tourists who who angered the guardian of the mountain and were arrested for stripping naked on top of a mountain to pay a fine of ten buffalo or face jail. The tourists should pay for their mistakes by giving sogit and This should be in the form of ten male or female buffalo.
16 bodies had been recovered from the country’s highest peak Mount Kinabalu after the magnitude 5.9 earthquake caused landslides and aftershocks.
The victims were 6 Malaysians, one from the Philippines, China and Japan, and 7 Singaporeans, including children who were on a school trekking trip.
Why is Mount Kinabalu sacred?
- Sabah’s Kadazan Dusun tribe believe the mountain houses the spirits of their dead ancestors.
- The name Kinabalu is derived from the tribe’s phrase “Aki Nabalu”, which means resting place of the dead.
- Climbers are told by guides, many of whom are Kadazan Dusun, to treat the mountain with respect and to refrain from shouting, screaming or cursing at it.
- Every December the tribe conducts a ritual called the Monolob to appease the spirits and allow climbers to continue visiting the mountain.
- A priestess, called a Bobolian, makes an offering of seven white chickens accompanied by seven chicken eggs, betel nuts, tobacco, limestone powder, and betel plant leaves. The Bobolian leads a chant and the chickens are then slaughtered, cooked, and given to the ceremony participants.
- In the past, this ceremony was conducted before every ascent, and climbers used the cooked meat as rations for their journey.