Alfred Dent

North Borneo (now known as the State of Sabah) was a British protectorate located in the northern part of the island of Borneo. The territory of North Borneo was originally established by concessions of the Sultanates of Brunei and Sulu in 1877 and 1878 to a German-born representative of Austria-Hungary, a businessman and diplomat, von Overbeck.

Overbeck had purchased a small tract land in the western coast of Borneo in 1876 from an American merchant Joseph William Torrey, had promoted the territory in Hong Kong since 1866. Overbeck then transferred all his rights to Alfred Dent before withdrawing in 1879.

In 1881, Dent established the North Borneo Provisional Association Ltd to manage the territory, which was granted a royal charter in the same year. The following year, the Provisional Association was replaced by the North Borneo Chartered Company. The granting of royal charter worried both the neighbouring Spanish and Dutch authorities and as a result the Spanish began to stake their claim to northern Borneo. A protocol known as the Madrid Protocol was signed in 1885 to recognise Spanish presence in the Philippine archipelago, in return establishing the definite border of Spanish influence beyond northern Borneo. To avoid further claims from other European powers, North Borneo was made a British protectorate in 1888.

North Borneo produced timber for export; along with agriculture this industry remained the main economic resource for the British in Borneo. As the population was too small to effectively serve the economy, the British sponsored various migration schemes for Chinese workers from Hong Kong and China to work in the European plantations, and for Japanese immigrants to participate in the economic activities of North Borneo.

Based on an agreement between the British Government and the British North Borneo Company for the establishment of a British Protectorate signed at London, 12 May 1888. The State of North Borneo comprises the territories specified in the said Royal Charter, and such other territories as the Company have acquired, or may hereafter acquire, ‘under the provisions of Article XV of the said Charter.

I. The State of North Borneo is divided into nine Provinces, namely:
• Province Alcock;
• Province Cunliffe;
• Province Dent;
• Province Dewhurst;
• Province Elphinstone;
• Province Keppel;
• Province Martin;
• Province Mayne; and
• Province Myburgh. Read More



While working on a story for Institution of Engineers Malaysia (Sabah chapter), we had the pleasure to meet up with Yang Bahagia Datuk Yeo Boon Hai, the Mayor of Kota Kinabalu to seek his views and his vision for Kota Kinabalu progress towards being a sustainable city.


Datuk Yeo mentioned that to make the city more sustainable, the role of the local authority is make sure that everyone follows our guideline and the guideline of the town and regional planning department of Sabah and balance it off between planning, administration and the economic and social values.


Kota Kinabalu is very lucky to have a few permanent areas that have been gazetted as a park. Many years ago, the Ministry of Tourism, Environment & Culture was working very hard to convert the likas mangrove swamp into a bird sanctuary. And now this bird sanctuary has been recognised worldwide as an international RAMSAR wetlands where there are only two RAMSAR sites in the city in the world. One is in Japan and one is in Sabah.


The Tunku Abdul Rahman Park is beautiful park inside the city which many cities don’t have. We have also created cycling lanes in Kota Kinabalu which is about 32Km now we are going into the phase 3 from Yayasan Sabah to UMS at the mangrove area.

The Tun Fuad Bukit Padang park, it has 152 acres which is a very popular jogging track and we will continue to maintain this as a park for all the people to enjoy.


We are also very active in the recycle programme. We have campaign on the 3 Rs. RECYCLE, REDUCE & RE-USE. We have about 300 shop premises that have joined our campaign for NO PLASTIC DAY on Saturday, Sunday and Monday. Of late, we increased the 3Rs to 3Bs.. which we said locally “ BAWA BEG BAH!” where we are encouraging everyone to reuse, reduce and to bring their own bags when we go shopping. We have also gone to the school to promote clean and green initiatives and we have even given grant to schools to do this programme.


While we have tried our best to keep the city clean and liveable, I am glad to share with you all that DBKK now is MSO 9000 certified and all our accounts are up to date and the our Tanjung Lipat Park has been awarded one of the best park in Malaysia by the federal government and I am very thankful to all my staff, to the State Government, especially the Chief Minister Tan Sri Datu Seri Panglima Musa Aman who is our minister in charge of city hall and YB Datuk Yong Oi Fah. DBKK would also like to thank the state secretary who has always been monitoring us, guiding us, Tan Sri Sukarti Wakiman and with the rest of the department as well as our board of advisers, I take this opportunity to thank everybody including the consultants and developers who has one way or the other contributed to Kota Kinabalu City been rated as a 5 Stars City by the Ministry of Urban Wellbeing, Housing and Local Government, Malaysia (




Beneath the shine and sparkle of the holiday season and the new year, it’s also the season that brings up other worries, such as our environment, social and economic future. Why are some Sabahans living and working away from home? Is the money really better or they want to escape our increasingly bad traffic jams, rising cost of living for a better quality of life?

We often asked ourselves, what is Sabah’s current status and planning for our future in terms of Sustainable Development?  Are our city planners doing their job? Does our present Government have all the sustainable policies in place?  By working with IEM Sabah Branch, this issue of BORNEO 360 explores the current Sabah’s smart technologies and sustainable development and we are proud to present you the Sabah Story. We have the pleasure to interview the Chief Minister of Sabah, Director of JKR, Mayor of Kota Kinabalu, for their views and highlighted 8 superb projects that have and will significantly shaped Sabah as a Smart Green State.  This includes the Tanjung Aru Eco Development Project (TAED). Because of the much debate and concern by the public over the development of the TAED project, we will continue to feature the development of this project in our present and coming future issues.

For our personality feature, we caught up with Ir. James Yong, the IEM Sabah Branch Chairman to find out more about the Institute of Engineers Malaysia and his views on Sustainable Development.

Our BORNEO 360 ALIVE YouTube channel is filled with more than 20 exciting new videos for you! SMILE is beautiful video of Kota Kinabalu featuring Ms. Cindy Foo, Miss Sabah Tourism 2017 and is a collaboration with Sabah Tourism Board. Our main feature on Sustainable Sabah has more than 10 great videos to watch. Don’t miss the exciting Borneo Expedition Episode 2 Trailer and many more such as Paragliding super girl Nadia, food and travelogues!


36 months ago, I took a 3 months break in January 2015 in Sydney, Australia. I wanted to learn journalism and video production so I signed up for photojournalism course at the Australian School of Journalism, creative writing, videography and design training courses at the University of Sydney. The courses I took have given me the foundation I needed to expand my knowledge in video and filming production.

My photography career has reached a point where I burned out and I am looking for more challenges to expand my knowledge and skills. Capturing a moment in time with a static image can tell a million words is one thing. But to be able to write and tell a wonderful story is something else.  I think when we reached a certain stage in your life, we just need to start writing and documenting not only about ourselves but interesting stories that surrounds us. Whether it’s something we believe in, something we support or something that will benefit the society.

The 3 months break I took has really gave me the ability to rethink, revalue, refocus and recharge myself to continue my career. Catching up with old friends over dinner on Chapel Street in Melbourne, breakfast and coffee in Frankston beach in Melbourne, meeting new friends on mountain bike rides at the Blue Mountains, spending quality time with my brother in Sydney and going back to college to study is really fun!


Upon return to Malaysia, I went on to develop my career in videography and mainly focusing on the role as a producer and director. Having the passion to produce interesting documentaries and videos will not work unless I have a dedicated videography team. Glad to have met these 2 fellas, Asbury Bendy and Engelbert Chong who has the patience to tolerate and believing in my judgement in the field and hence the successful formation of the Borneo 360 ALIVE Productions team. We have gone the miles in the last 2 years and have developed a reputable portfolio of clients, produced commercials for Sabah Tourism Board and a TV Series which we hope to get it aired this year. A big thanks to Canon Marketing Malaysia also for supporting us with the cool equipment which has helped us to excel in our fields.


To failures, success, happiness, health, adventures, joy, celebrations, sadness, those who left us, those who believe in us, those who trust us, those who support us, its all part of the journey of life and I wish you all another great journey ahead in 2018 and let’s hope we can share your story.

We present here our 2017 Showreel of some of the work we have done. GOD BLESS!


SMILE – Is a story of a few single travellers that met and became friends in the beautiful city of Kota Kinabalu , Sabah. Had the pleasure to produce and direct this Sabah Tourism Board’s promotion video. This video is a collaboration between Borneo 360 ALIVE Productions and Sabah Tourism Board.

This is a 100% Sabahan production with the SMILE song composed by Appy Tots. Talents include Cindy Foo’s, Miss Sabah Tourism 2017, Gwendelyn Eunice Joseph Gumpil, Carlton O’bren and Theodore Cleophas.

Wish to also thanks our sponsors for making this project a success. There are  Canon Marketing Malaysia for using Canon equipment, Riverbug, Sutera Harbour Resort, Shangri-la Tanjung Aru Resort, IMAGO, Camaca Chocolates, Lucy’s Kitchen, North Borneo Railway, Borneo Reef World, KUTA Bistro, 999 Bar, A Studio, WB Images, Cede Prudente, Borneo 360 Adventure Klias, Amazing Borneo, North Borneo Cruises, Mari Mari Cultural Village, Coral Flyer, Sea Quest and Hap Seng Star.