TAMBUNAN: Quarrels over religion and race are a waste of time and will not bring any benefit for Sabahans, says Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal said.
He said that it was more important for the people be concerned about how to earn money and bring more development and progress to the state.
Making his first visit as Chief Minister into the Opposition-held Tambunan district in the Sabah interior, Shafie said the quarrel must be over how to bring development for Sabah and ensure that future generation benefits.
"There is no use for us quarrel over race and religion but we do not have jobs, or our children do not have money, land, houses or work.
"We must not divide ourselves as Muslim or Christians, Dusun, Bajau, Kadayan or any other ethnicities. We are all Sabahans and must not quarrel over race or religion as it is a waste of time," he said.
"All of us in our hearts love our (respective) religious beliefs and our race. This is between us and God.
"But we also know that Sabah needs to be united to progress and develop. If we are divided, we cannot bring progress to the state," Shafie said at meet the people session during his working visit to the Kadazandusun heartland on Saturday.
The Tambunan seat and the Keningau Parliament seat is held by Sabah STAR president Datuk Dr Jeffrey Kitingan.
Shafie, an ethnic Bajau from east coast Semporna, told the interior folks that he was Chief Minister for all Sabahans and not for one race only.
"As Chief Minister, I went to visit a church (St Theresa) to hear their needs. There is nothing wrong with me visiting a church.
"I did not go there to pray. I went there to see the building and listen to the needs of the faithful," he said, adding that he approved RM1mil for the refurbishment of the church.
During his visit, he carried out a groundbreaking ceremony for the Native Court building and opened the RM19mil Tambunan Community College.
He also approved a government allocation of RM40,000 for two orphanages in the district.
He also distributed 339 native land titles for villages.