KOTA KINABALU: The appointment of Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob as Deputy Prime Minister is expected to strengthen the Perikatan Nasional-led government, say Sabah STAR and SAPP.
The two Gabungan Rakyat Sabah (GRS) allies voiced their support for the decision in separate statements here on Wednesday (July 7).
Sabah STAR president Datuk Seri Dr Jeffrey Kitingan hoped it would translate to further strengthening of the strategic partnership between Sabah and the Federal Government.
"Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin personally informed me of the decision to appoint Ismail Sabri to the post.
"Ismail’s solid track record, having held numerous important portfolios in the government, will help relieve the Prime Minister of some of his duties, especially in handling the pandemic situation.
“I have no doubt that this appointment will also strengthen the government and stabilise the political situation in the country," Kitingan said.
He added that the fact that Muhyiddin personally called his political allies to inform them of this appointment spoke volumes about his leadership personality, which set him apart from previous Prime Ministers.
“Muhyiddin also revealed that it took him a long time to decide on this appointment.
"It shows that this decision was well-considered and not done hastily,” added Kitingan.
Meanwhile, SAPP president Datuk Yong Teck Lee said Ismail's appointment as well as Datuk Seri Hishammuddin Tun Hussein's appointment as Senior Minister (Security), would strengthen the government in terms of giving focus on the National Recovery Plan (NRP) to be executed in the shortest possible time.
"This is what the people want.
"The Prime Minister has obviously made these decisions with the NRP in mind and to ensure the Cabinet is suitably manned by able, experienced statesmen with excellent crisis management track records to help steer the nation's post-pandemic economic regeneration plan," he added.
Yong, who is PN supreme council deputy chairman, said the decisions were supported by all leaders of the council.