DPM Fadillah urged to consider Sabahans' views on having two village development committees

KOTA KINABALU: The absence of Madani village development committees (JKDM) in Sarawak raises the question of whether it is only meant for states where Umno has a presence, says Datuk Joniston Bangkuai.

The Kiulu assemblyman and Sabah Assistant Tourism, Culture and Environment Minister also questioned the relevance of the JKDM as it essentially duplicated the roles of the long-established village development and security committees (JKKK).

“This question ought to be answered as there is a general perception that it is intended more for political expediency favouring Umno and riding on the Madani concept," he said at the Kampung Tomis Baru Kaamatan celebration on Wednesday (May 22).

He added that perhaps Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Fadillah Yusof, who is in charge of Sabah and Sarawak Affairs, could look into the views of Sabahans, including several key leaders who did not favour having JKDM in the state.

ALSO READ: State leaders question need for two village development committees in Sabah

“Fortunately, we have two Deputy Prime Ministers, and one is from Sarawak. If JKDM is unnecessary in Sarawak, perhaps he (Fadillah) should also examine the situation in Sabah, given the similar political conditions.

“(Being a fellow from the Bornean states), he will listen to our views. We rely on him to consider the feelings of Sabahans," he added.

Sabah leaders continue to question the relevance of JKDM, an initiative of the Rural and Regional Development Ministry led by Deputy Prime Minister Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, who is also Umno president.

Deputy Chief Minister I and Sabah STAR President Datuk Seri Dr Jeffrey Kitingan said on Tuesday (May 21) that the state government would submit a formal objection to the JKDM to Prime Minister Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim when he visits Sabah next week.

“We reject (the JKDM), and we will reject it formally. And we will also (make known) the stance of the state government to the Prime Minister when he is here on May 31," said Kitingan.

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