SAPP gets show-cause letter

KUALA LUMPUR: The Barisan Nasional supreme council will issue a show-cause letter to Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP) for calling for a vote of no-confidence against Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi.

Barisan deputy chairman Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak announced last night that SAPP had 30 days to reply after which a final decision will be made, depending on “developments” and the party's reply.

“After 30 days, the Barisan supreme council will meet again and decide whether to issue them a warning, suspend or sack the party.” he said after the supreme council meeting at Menara Datuk Onn here.

He said the 30-day period was to give SAPP a chance to defend itself. He said this was natural justice and procedurally correct.

On whether Barisan was expecting “developments” such as a vote of no-confidence against the Prime Minister, Najib said: “We expect the best and are prepared for the worst.”

He said the 13 Barisan component parties, which met last night, were united in their views that what SAPP did was serious and affected the integrity and discipline of the coalition.

“It is clear that this is a serious action which can bring damage to the interests of Barisan,” he added.

The 14th Barisan component party member, SAPP, was not present for the meeting.

“They were not invited as we were discussing SAPP's position following their recent statement which is very much against the coalition's discipline,” he added.

Barisan chairman Abdullah had excused himself from the meeting when the matter was being discussed.

SAPP, during its supreme council meeting on Friday, said they would support a vote of no-confidence against Abdullah in Parliament .

To a question whether Yong would be called to give his side of the story and defend his party, Najib said: “If there is a request. It depends on what kind of reply we get from him.”

When contacted in Kota Kinabalu, Yong said he would reply once he got the show-cause letter.

At the press conference, Abdullah said the Government was paying more attention to bring development to Sabah and Sarawak especially the rural areas as well as to tackle the problem of illegal immigrants.

On the plight of Indians, Abdullah said Najib would be holding a meeting next week to address the concerns of the Indians and it would be attended by MIC president Datuk Seri S. Samy Vellu. Asked about the independent post mortem of the March 8 election results, Abdullah said they did not have the full report.

“I must enquire why they are taking so long. Maybe (it is) because we are having too many meetings.”