KOTA KINABALU: Dozens of supporters of Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal, whose 60th birthday fell yesterday, turned up at the court complex wearing orange T-shirts in solidarity with the Parti Warisan Sabah president.
The supporters wore tops in that colour, similar to that usually worn by Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission detainees.
The supporters at the Chong Thien Vun park, adjacent to the Kota Kinabalu court complex, began shouting “Sabah Ubah” and sang the Happy Birthday song repeatedly.
Shafie’s relatives brought out three birthday cakes near an ambulance where Shafie was waiting as his supporters sang on.
His wife Datin Seri Shuryani Shuaib and son Mohd Shezwi cut the cakes amid loud cheers.
There was tension in the air over the uncertainty as to where his remand hearing would be held.
The media was initially told that the proceedings would be held at the Queen Elizabeth hospital (1) where the Parti Warisan Sabah president had been warded following his arrest late Thursday.
While some reporters and photographers gathered there, others heard that the hearing would take place in the court instead.
The drama continued with Shafie’s arrival through the back of the court complex in an ambulance at 2.15pm.
While waiting for the remand hearing, Warisan deputy president Derrel Leiking, who is one of Shafie’s lawyers, explained the confusion over where the proceedings would be held.
He said while court officials arranged for a magistrate to go to the hospital, Shafie insisted that it should be held in a court.
“He did not want to inconvenience the doctor, staff and patients at the hospital as there would be quite a number of people turning up for the hearing,” Derrel added.
Shafie, who was in a white shirt and black trousers, was escorted to the magistrate’s court uncuffed at 3.20pm. Shuryani and their son was by his side.
At the two-hour hearing, magistrate Cindy Mcjuce Balitus ordered Shafie to be taken back to the hospital to continue with his treatment for high blood pressure.