KOTA KINABALU: Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) acting president Datuk Dr Maximus Ongkili has accused the Warisan-led government of not achieving anything, 60 days into its rule of Sabah.
However, Parti Warisan Sabah hit back at Ongkili, saying the accusations were a depiction of his inability to accept the new government.
Christopher Masudal, who is Special officer to Warisan deputy president Darell Leiking, said changes were being made in Sabah at a “reasonable pace”.
“Ongkili claimed that nothing new or beneficial has been done by Warisan within these 60 days, but how can that be when Warisan established the State Education Ministry immediately after forming the state government?” he said in a statement Wednesday.
He said the new ministry was formed despite former Chief Minister Tan Sri Musa Aman and former State Assistant Finance Minister Datuk Ramlee Marhaban scoffing at the idea.
Masudal added that through the State Education Ministry, Sabah would see the equal distribution of funds to assist Chinese-, English- and Malay-medium schools in the state.
“Is the creation of this new ministry and what it proposes to do not beneficial to the state?” he countered.
He also asked for clarification from Ongkili, who said that the new state government had damaged Sabah and withdrawn assistance that benefited the people, as well as disturbing policy decisions that had benefited the people.
Masudal said Ongkili should understand that the reason why Sabahans rejected Barisan Nasional in GE14 was due to these very same policy decisions.
“These policies, which he claimed were beneficial, had in fact caused dissatisfaction and resentment from the people – for instance, the awarding of communal titles to natives, among others,” he said.
As for the regulation of illegal immigrants in Sabah as proposed by the new state government, Masudal urged Ongkili to recall that in 2011, a 12-strong member team from PBS had expressed their support for the effort to document all illegal immigrants using biometric systems.
“They had said that this was to prevent illegal immigrants from obtaining fake identification documents as their fingerprints would be centralised,” he said.
He said the then PBS had also stated its stand on the issue, saying it was not against foreign workers per se, but welcomed them because they were needed to fuel industries in Sabah.
He said PBS had said that these foreign workers however must be properly documented and should never be allowed to become citizens.
“So, what difference is it with what we are trying to do now and what PBS wanted then?” he said.