SANDAKAN: The parking foyer in front of the DAP office in Bandar Letat Jaya here, the location for the final ceramah for the Sandakan by-election, was packed on Friday (May 10) night.
Rain came down in the midst of Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal's speech but it did not deter the crowd, who instead moved to the shoplots nearby or came ready with their own umbrellas.
"The rain is a blessing. We have been waiting for the rain to come, and now it did," Shafie said, referring to the dry spell in Sabah, drawing applause from from the crowd.
He reiterated that support for DAP candidate Vivian Wong would ensure more voice in Parliament towards Sabah's rights as equal partners.
"This is a small by-election but for us in Sabah, it is a big deal.
"Sabah is much better than some other states as we have resources such as timber, oil and gas.
"We must tell the world we have our rights.
"So we must make sure our (Sandakan) representative in parliament is not Umno, not PBS, not PAS, but DAP.
"We cannot be taken for granted as we were during the Barisan Nasional era.
"We must be treated equally as in the Malaysia Agreement 1963," Shafie said.
Vivian, when delivering her final bid for votes, was overcome with emotion as she pledged to do her best in honour of her father despite being a novice.
"I want to convince the people I will work as hard as my dad to serve Sandakan if given the chance.
"More importantly, I will not turn my back on the people of Sandakan.
"The people's money is the people's money, I will not take it," she said, adding that it was amusing Datuk Seri Najib Razak came here to support the opposition, whom she labelled as a crook or a thief.
" I promise, I will learn if I don't know.
"I will bring the voice of Sabah to parliament even if I am young, even if I am a woman," she said to a roaring crowd.
Economic Affairs Minister Datuk Seri Mohamed Azmin Ali, who is PKR deputy president echoed the sentiment.
"If Sandakan wants corruption, wants the country to have billions of debts, support PBS.
"But if Sandakan folks want leaders who have integrity, support DAP candidate Vivian.
"That is why tonight we see Chinese, Muslim bumiputras, Kadazans and others here as we are united," Azmin added.