Published on: Sunday, January 27, 2013
Penampang: Scepticism over the integrity and independence of the Royal Commission of Inquiry (RCI) to investigate an extraordinary increase in the population of Sabah has so far been proven wrong.
United Pasokmomogun Kadazandusun Murut Organisation (Upko) Deputy Secretary-General, Senator Dr Lucas Umbul, said witnesses who had testified thus far have given evidence and statements with ease and without fear or favour."
Therefore, he said all parties should hold on to their opinion as their comments could intimidate incoming witnesses and prevent them from giving evidence without fear or favour.
"No one should make any conclusion at this point in time because there are still many more witnesses to come and members of the RCI need to be given ample space and time to complete their investigation," he said in a statement here, Saturday.
Lucas, who is also the UPKO Tenom Divisional Chief, said one could only give a fair comment and opinion once the RCI has completed its public inquiry, saying "the report is written and made public".
Expressing his satisfaction on the people's appreciation to the decision by the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak's administration to establish the RCI, he said the decision was made possible simply by the basic principal and leadership approach by the Najib Administration "which is - 1Malaysia (inclusiveness) People First (giving priority to the peoples concern and aspiration) Performance Now (implementation with integrity and competency)".
Lucas stressed that the establishment of the RCI was not a mere slogan but implemented with vigor within the underlying theme of transformation, namely political transformation, government transformation and economic transformation.
"In short, the Najib Administration represent a new and transformed government," he added.
He said Najib was genuinely implementing political transformation as evident in the Government's decision to abolish several laws which have been described by various quarters as draconian such as the Internal Security Act (ISA) and the University and Colleges Act and the like.
"Surely, Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak as the Prime Minister must have been confronted with various challenges in arriving at a decision to establish the RCI.
"However, the challenges are understandable because the extraordinary increase in the population of Sabah is historical in perspective all of which happens during the tenure of two previous administrations," he said.
Lucas also announced that Upko Secretary-General Datuk Wilfred Madius Tangau has been subpoenaed to appear before the RCI and is ever ready to attend as a witness to the RCI.
Next proceedings are slated for Jan 29 till Feb 1 and from Feb 22 to 27, this year.