Mat Salleh or his actual name Datu Mat Salleh was a famous warrior who fought against the British rule in Sabah. Mat Salleh originated from the Suluk Paitan ethnic group. His father was Datu Balu who married a girl from the Bajau ethnic group and had four children, namely, Ali, Mat Salleh, Badin and Bolong. Mat Salleh's wife was Dayung Andung who was from the Sultan Sulu's family and her village was at Penggalaban, Paitan. Mat Salleh took over the duties of his father as the village chieftain in the Lingkabo district and Sungei Sugut.
Mat Salleh administrative expenses were from the taxes imposed on the traders who used the Sungai Sungut in 1894. The British attacked Mat Salleh at Jambongan and destroyed Fort Mat Salleh at Sungai Sugut between 1896 and 1897. However, Datu Mat Salleh managed to escape during these attacks. In retaliation, Mat Salleh started attacking the British East India Company from July 1897. Mat Salleh and his followers attacked and destroyed the administrative office of the British East India Company at Pulau Gaya. In the same year, Mat Salleh attacked and burned the British East India Company Resident's office at Ambong.
On December 1897, the British attacked Mat Salleh's Fort at Ranau. The British were defeated and many of the British soldiers were killed including Jones who was the leader in the attack. On January 1898, the British again attacked Mat Salleh's Fort at Ranau with a bigger troop. However, Mat Salleh managed to escape and built a new fort at Tibabar, Tambunan that was stronger and more stable than his previous fort. Mat Salleh new fort at Tambunan was very difficult to attack as the fort was built from stones, wood and bamboo which prevented the bullets from penetrating the walls of the fort. Each corner of the fort was guarded and there were many secret underground tunnels for them to seek assistance for firearms and food from outside the fort. These secret underground tunnels were also used for...
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