‘I Don’t See Myself As Chinese But A Malaysian’; Shafie Gets Sworn In


COMMENT: A world record of sorts.

A 92-year-old Prime Minister doing it second time round for the country. If you are not in awe of him, then you are not from this planet.

The country needed a complete overhaul and change from the corrupted Najib administration, only Dr Mahathir could do it.

Every voter knew that.

This old man he played two, and Najib lost his underpants.

No shot was fired, no violence, only the determination of the voters to bring about a new Malaysia led by this grand old man.

Change they shouted. And change came.


Anxious and nervous while waiting for the results knowing Najib and Musa Aman would cheat n steal the election, some didn’t have the stomach to watch the results.

Of course the government media gave the impression that the BN parties were leading the contest very early on. Then there were reports shared in the social media of Warisan PH candidates were actually winning, then it was officially announced that they had lost.

The Parliamentary seat of Kimanis was a good example where Anifah Aman, the former Foreign Minister, contested; all early reports had showed an exit for him, and then the Wizard of Kimanis appeared; from a sure losing position, suddenly he won by just over 100 votes defeating his closet rival, Karim Bujang of Warisan.

That was how the BN government led by UMNO had stayed in power for over 60 years in the country, with the exception of Sabah, where we had changed governments before.

The cheated and vote buying was an established culture. This time the voters took the money but voted their preferred party.

It is a big task for the new Prime Minister, Dr Mahathir to get this country on the right path again after Najib’s cynical and greedy manipulations of power. Then Mahathir has great love for the country and we are confident he will get it sorted out soon enough.

For an ex-prime minister’s son, Najib with his pedigree destroyed UMNO fulfilling the RAHMAN prophecy and almost the country too.

He will go down in history as the worst prime minister ever. His father must be turning in his grave. What a legacy!

Dr Mahathir had announced a few key cabinet positions; the post that got the most attention was the Finance Ministry.

LIM GUAN ENG – the first ethnic Chinese Finance Minister in over four decades.

The minister appointed was Lim Guan Eng, an ethnic Chinese to be given the post 50 years after Sir Henry Lee and Tan Siew Sin.

When asked how he felt being an ethnic Chinese holding the post as it had traditionally been held by UMNO ever since, his reply was “I don’t see myself as Chinese but a Malaysian”.

What a brilliant answer, this is the new Malaysia we all want; we are all Malaysians, get the best person to do the job ,forget about race and religion that UMNO had conditioned in all of us all these years.

Of course, the appointment was not accepted universally; Rafizi Ramli of PKR was reported to have said the senior cabinet positions did not have the consensus of all the parties in PH coalition. He has since denied this.

Maybe PKR with the most seats at 47, felt they were more deserving of the plum financial ministry post.

If this was so, then Rafizi missed out on the fact that the people were not interested in all the petty squabbling and his party’s view about cabinet posts.


Things are still precarious, don’t rock the boat; we want it to be steadied first.

People are complaining about the high cost of living and the corruption and they crave for the Rule of Law; many are surviving on hand to mouth, they know what Dr Mahathir has put in place in a break neck speed thus far has a chance of turning Malaysia around and make it great again like he did last time.

Don’t give him more headache by being a party pooper, he’s got enough on his plate. He didn’t come out of retirement to play politics with young upstarts. Give him a free hand to do what’s right.

He is trying to save the country from ruins; we expect everyone to play ball.

Is that too much to ask?

Come back when the country is on a steadier footing. Meanwhile stop playing the fool.


Those of us who are old enough have seen it before.

Like the old P Ramlee movies, they are never boring. We can even remember the dialogue line by line.

Now, BORNEO TODAY did forecast that it was a 50-50 situation here in Sabah; honestly we didn’t think it would be so ‘spot on’.

Shafie Apdal, Sabah’s newest Chief Minister, is greeted by Richard Malanjum, Chief Judge for Sabah and Sarawak at Istana Negeri at the swearing in of the new Sabah Cabinet in midweek.

When the official results came out – BN had 29 seats and Warisan-PH 29 too, with 2 seats going to Jeffrey Kitingan’s STAR.

Talking about a hung assembly, it couldn’t get any worse than this.

Word is, Jeffrey, or his people, had got in touch with Shafie Apdal initially. But he must had a change of mind overnight and was seen at Seri Gaya the following day (Thursday) to bargain for his own position, and probably getting what he wanted, aligned himself with the BN, led Musa Aman, giving them 31 seats, and enough to form the new state government. We now know Jeffrey wanted the deputy Chief Minister’s post.

Jeffrey who is notorious for his party hopping history was universally condemned as there was this big desire to get rid of the corrupted BN state government and with him throwing his lot behind Musa, this was seen as an act of betrayal of the worst order, even by his own people, when he was actually standing on the opposition platform and fighting to get rid of BN.

The speed he ran to BN made many people wonder if there was a “pre-nuptial” agreement with BN as speculated by many observers.

FLASHBACK: An agitated Musa Aman had refused to budge from the Istana despite being told that he no longer commanded the majority in the Sabah State Assembly.

Then this is Sabah, the land of the political frogs. What’s new?

If Najib and Musa, with the help of some agencies had not cheated, Warisan-PH would have actually won 35 state seats, comfortable enough to form the new state government on its own.

Recounting after recounting whittled it to 29 seats.

Musa, confident of his 31 seats, had then rushed to the Istana to be sworn in and became the Chief Minister again.

But actually the drama had started earlier; Wilfred Tangau, the acting President of UPKO had announced the party was leaving BN to team up with Warisan-PH.

However, all its ADUN (five State Assemblymen) were not allowed to leave Sri Gaya, the Chief Ministers official residence, where they had gone to be with Musa.

Communication lines with all the actors were hazy, as confusion reigned. Some said they were still with BN, some said they had left.

It was a big yawn for the old timers, but it was exciting for the first time young voters as horse trading took place behind the scenes.

Frogs must have been the most used word before a clear picture emerged.

After more horse-trading, finally Shafie was sworn in on Saturday night as the Governor was confident that he had the support of the majority of the assemblymen as three UMNO members too had crossed over giving him 36seats.

So, once again within a short space of time, Sabah has had two chief ministers.

Musa has the option to voluntarily resign or challenge it in court, which he has since done so. As the drama is still being acted out, with more crossing over to Warisan, it looks like Musa’s time is up.

Shafie Apdal with Christina Liew and Stephen Wong and Madius Tangau at the press conference at his residence in Kota Kinabalu on Friday evening.

Maybe he should have disappeared, when the first frogs started jumping. Then he was confident of winning, so there was no exit strategy.

Now he has to worry about possible court cases as Shafie had promised to take action against any wrongdoings during his tenure.

Juicy stuff will be revealed. And Sabahans simply could not wait.

The irony of the early crossing over was that UPKO, a KDM-based party was rather cynical during campaigning by dubbing Warisan as a “Suluk” party as Warisan’s President, Shafie Apdal is a Bajau/ Suluk ethnic. Many KDM cowered in fear as the term is used to describe the illegals from Southern Philippines sneaking into Sabah which had outnumbered them from all reckoning.


Then UPKO was the first to jump to this “Suluk” party after the results were known. They will have to eat back their words and swallow their pride.

The “Suluk” tag did wonders as most of the majority KDM seats were won by KDM BN-friendly PBS and UPKO, leaving Warisan with a handful.

Now with Shafie Apdal sworn in and Warisan is set to rule Sabah for the next five years assuming Musa is not going to court. Warisan cannot let up as more work is required.

It has the potential of being a party of first choice for Sabahans. Actually it has no choice but to be one.


A multi-cultural party helmed by young Sabahans, if it does not get arrogant and works on fair play, more people will support it.

It has managed to drive UMNO out of Sabah, forget politics of race and religion, and work more on merit and how can that go wrong?

A line must be drawn clearly what’s government and which is party, it cannot overlap like what UMNO did.

All the bad practises of UMNO must be thrown in the dust bin and new SOPs must be drawn up.

Party officials like (Terrence) Siambun and (Loretto) Padua who didn’t contest in the election must be tasked to strengthen the party.

Next election in five years time, most of the voters are younger and all are internet savvy, they are not easy to please.

If you don’t dance to their tune with good governance and zero corruption, they will flush you away too.

If a 60-year-old party can be consigned to the dustbin of history, what’s a 5-year-old local party which is hardly tested?

You have been warned.