KOTA KINABALU: Sabah Umno information chief Datuk Abdul Rahim Ismail has been promoted to a full minister in the 10-member state Cabinet while Chief Minister Datuk Musa Aman has dropped Datuk Abdul Ghapur Salleh, a senior member of the former Cabinet.
Musa retained the Finance portfolio and also his predecessor Datuk Chong Kah Kiat as Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister and all three Deputy Chief Ministers - Datuk Wences Anggang, Datuk Tham Nyip Shen and Datuk Lajim Ukin.
However, he moved Lajim out of the Agriculture and Food Industries Ministry to take over as Minister in the Chief Ministers Department.
The post was previously held by Ghapur, the only minister from Chongs Cabinet to be dropped.
Rahim, who was assistant minister in the Chief Ministers Department, took over the Agriculture and Food Industries portfolio while Lahad Datu assemblyman Samsu Baharun Abdul Rahman was sworn in as an assistant minister.
All the remaining 13 assistant ministers were retained with minor changes to their portfolios.
Tham was retained as Industrial Development and Information Technology Minister, Wences as Industrial Development Minister, Datuk Salleh Tun Said as Local Government and Housing Minister and Datuk Yahya Hussin as Infrastructure Development Minister.
In addition, Datuk Nasir Tun Sakaran, Datuk Raymond Tan and Tan Sri Joseph Kurup retained the Rural Development, Community Development and Consumer Affairs, and Youth and Sports portfolios respectively.
Speaking to reporters after the swearing in of the Cabinet yesterday, Musa said he was confident that the team would be able to work together to serve the people and prepare for the coming state elections.
Musa has also made changes to some of the portfolios, which include moving Science and Technology - formerly under the Tourism Ministry - to the Chief Ministers Department, and Culture - which was under the Youth and Sports Ministry - to Tourism.
It is to bring the ministries in line with the Federal ministries, he explained.
The Cabinet has six Umno ministers, two from SAPP, and one each from LDP, Upko and PBRS, reflecting a racial composition of six Muslim bumiputras, three Chinese and two Kadazandusuns.
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