Motive behind Shafie’s handing out of land titles questioned

  • Nation
  • Friday, 14 Aug 2020

KOTA KINABALU: Caretaker Chief Minister Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal’s move to distribute “promised” native land titles to villagers across the state is raising eyebrows among his political opponents.

The Parti Warisan Sabah president insisted that it was not a vote-buying tactic, saying he had been giving out land titles for over a year but the Opposition was having none of it.

Shafie’s Warisan Plus state government had promised to fulfil the 2018 general election pledges, with the native land titles being a key part of it.

The “hot button” issue of land titles is expected to be Warisan Plus’ key push on the delivery of its electoral promises in the coming snap polls.

Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) secretary-general Datuk Jahid Jahim shot back, saying Shafie could have just let the villagers receive their land titles from the respective district officers instead.

“Since the Warisan-led government claimed that the recent handing over of land titles to eligible recipients was not politically motivated, then they should let the district officers do the job.

“It is also questionable that such activities are justified given that the state is still grappling with the Covid-19 pandemic. It is reckless to allow such programmes as the pandemic is still a public threat,” Jahid said in a statement yesterday.

Jahid urged the Election Commission (EC) to clarify whether Shafie’s tour across Sabah to distribute land titles was tantamount to campaigning and vote-buying.

“I hope that the EC investigates and determines whether the handing out of land grants is appropriate just prior to an election,” he added.

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