‘Political Change Must Take Place Not Only In Sabah, But Whole Nation’

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Shafie, second from left, said although elections are not due yet for another 15 months or so, but Sabah Umno wants it earlier as they are running scared of Warisan’s growing strength.

By THE BORNEOTODAY TEAM
PAPAR: A political change must take place nationwide to ensure that both the State and Federal governments can brings real changes to the people, Parti Warisan Sabah president Datuk Mohd Shafie Apdal.

He said that though Warisan is not working with the national opposition of Pakatan Harapan, it does not mean that it does not support Harapan, PKR and DAP in wanting to topple the Umno-led Barisan Nasional in peninsular Malaysia.

“We sure have similar objectives and that is to topple the BN; as for Warisan this is our mission in Sabah,” he said to loud cheers at a gathering at Kampung Limbahau here, Saturday afternoon as part of his fledgling party’s roadshow.

“For real change in Sabah to take place, we are in the same line with Pakatan Harapan as we need to bring down the Barisan government.”

He said if the people can recall what happened in 1985 after Berjaya was brought down – how difficult it was for Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) when it held the state government but the federal remained with Barisan under Umno domination.

Pairin Kitingan, the PBS leader and then chief minister struggled to hold on against Kuala Lumpur, first joining the coalition and then pulling out (before PBS collapsed after winning in 1994).

“I think everyone knows what happened,’’ Shafie said, in explaining that by winning the state government they could work with a federal government under Pakatan Harapan.

Shafie told the gathering of several hundred at Kampung Limbahau that GST is a regressive tax and that Sabahans are suffering due to it.

Rationalising his call for all Sabahans to rally behind muliti-racial Warisan, Shafie said that Pakatan Harapan parties should take on Umno and Barisan in peninsular and leave Sabah to Warisan.

He said it was no point for parties to win seats but sit in the opposition.

“Warisan wants to win the state government to implement the changes everyone is waiting for.

PLANS TO BRING BACK SABAH TO ITS FORMER GLORY

“We are Sabahans so let’s rally together,” he told the 1,500 odd crowd in Papar.

Shafie said he and Warisan had ambitious plans to bring back Sabah to its greatness that was once experienced and that is exactly why he opted to be with a local party, adding he could have been deputy president of a national based party.

“My work is here in Sabah. Enough of the corruption, enough of putting the people on the backpedal. Instead Warisan wants to see Sabah progress and the people enjoy the fruits of its rich natural resources,” he added.

He said with the state’s own education ministry, the Warisan government would set up more vocational schools, and the good students would be sent for overseas training to hone their skills and get more experience.

“That’s real human capital development. As for Sabah history, we already have it in those agreements. The government should stick to what was agreed. Why the need to runding lagi (discuss further).

Change can only be achieved if the people unite and vote for the party they think can best serve their interests, both at State and Federal levels, Shafie, right, tells the crowd.

He also pointed out that the power is with the people and not the political parties as it would be the people who would eventually decide which party they want to lead the state, but he reminded the crowd that Sabah and Sabahans would not die without BN and Umno.

BR1M PAYMENTS MADE 2 OR 3 TIMES YEARLY; GST ENFORCED DAILY

“Don’t take their gifts and then later complain,” he said. “BR1M is given one or twice a year and you may get a few hundred ringgit, but what about the monthly fuel hikes. They charge it daily and we have to fork out extra money every day, even when prices of fuel (at the international market) is down.

“And GST (Goods and Services Tax); it is a regressive tax. We have to pay GST for everything, school uniforms, shoes, bags, even the pampers you need to pay GST and so even from young and without earnings, a regressive tax has to be paid.

He said GST has badly affected a lot of Sabahans and that is one of the issues a Warisan state Government would raise and force the federal government to do away with.

At another function earlier, Shafie said Umno-BN is worried about Warisan as more and more people are joining the party.

He said general elections is not due until the third quarter of 2018, but in Sabah Umno wants to bring it forward; they want early elections because they are scared Warisan is getting stronger every day.

On a lighter note, which drew laughter from the crowd, Shafie said Warisan polling agents and counting agents (PACA) especially those in the rural areas, would be equipped with flashlights on election night so as to be prepared should electricity suddenly go off while counting (of votes) is in progress.

He also said there is nothing to prevent people from forming political parties but he urged the leaders to be rationale and assess the situation properly as to whether their presence would benefit the people, or Umno.