KOTA BELUD – United Pasokmomogun Kadazandusun Murut Organisation (UPKO) today claimed that the aspiration of Malaysians in Sabah was ignored by Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal when he was in the Federal Cabinet.
“He was in a strategic position as Regional and Rural Development Minister to strengthen the special position of Sabah within the framework of the Federation of Malaysia, especially in terms of devolution of power.
“Yet, he ignored the aspiration of the people in Sabah as if he did not understand the uniqueness of the Sabah cabinet and the state’s own administrative system,” said UPKO Youth Chief Ewon Benedick.
According to him, Mohd Shafie, who is Parti Warisan Sabah president “failed to adopt the philosophy of ‘Sabah for Sabahans’ which he is now advocating” when he was in the government before joining the opposition.
“He implemented most of the development projects under his then ministry without having gone through the respective authority under the state government. In a way, this undermined the state government,” Ewon said in a statement today.
Ewon who is also UPKO Kota Belud Division chief claimed the federal minister also deliberately wanted to undermine the state government and project a bad image of Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman and his cabinet.
He also doubted that Mohd Shafie could empower qualified Sabah natives to hold important positions in the public sector.
“I cannot recall anyone from Sabah that he (Mohd Shafie) had appointed when he was a minister. This contradicts with what his party is now advocating to empower Sabahans in the public service,” he said.
Ewon said UPKO Kota Belud reiterated its stand to strongly support the present government which had effectively maintained peace and harmony that are essential in national development.
“Barisan Nasional has the formula of assimilating the aspiration of various races and it is certainly a party that does not advocate hypocrisy in leadership,” he added.