Published on: Saturday, February 23, 2013
Tenom: Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin praised the Sabah Government led by Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman for the success in reducing the poverty rate in the state to about eight per cent, especially in the last four years.
The Deputy Prime Minister said the claim by the opposition that the Sabah Barisan Nasional (BN) government had purportedly failed to bring development was "slanderous and a mere lie."
"The opposition says Sabah is poor, Sabah has no progressive people, Sabah has no facilities, Sabah is lagging behind...these are all lies," he told a Leader With the People gathering at Dewan Sri Antanom, Friday.
Also present were Musa, State Assembly Speaker Datuk Seri Salleh Said Keruak, Deputy Chief Ministers Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan and Datuk Seri Yahya Hussin.
When announcing the preliminary results of the Household Income Study (HIS) 2012 for Sabah on Wednesday, Director-General of the Economic Planning Unit (EPU), Datuk Dr Rahamat Bivi Yusoff had said the poverty rate in Sabah dropped from 19.7 per cent in 2009 to 8.1 per cent last year, the biggest recorded in the country.
The poverty rate in the rural areas recorded a drop of 32.8 per cent in 2009 to 12.9 per cent last year, while in the urban areas, the figure dropped from 9.8 per cent to 5.3 per cent.
Rahamat Bivi was also quoted as saying that the outcome of the HIS 2012 showed that the average household income in Sabah in 2012 rose to RM4,013 per month compared with RM3,102 in 2009, an increase of 29.4 per cent with an average growth rate of 8.6 per cent annually.
Muhyiddin said: "As the Deputy Prime Minister, I have visited many places in the state and I know the real situation.
"That's why we want to ensure that the BN government that has policies, all of them to assist the rakyat, must be supported and assisted by every strata of the people in the whole country," he said.
In this regard, he said the Federal government led by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak had taken numerous initiatives including the Government Transformation Programme to assist the people.
These included reducing the crime rate, eliminating corruption, providing quality education, raising the people's income, providing public amenities, improving the transportation system and tackling the cost of living problems, he said.
Muhyiddin also reminded the people of Sabah, particularly those in the interior, to make a smart decision in the looming general election to determine the future direction of the country.
He said the best option for Sabah was the BN government which had proven its capability in looking after the welfare of the people.
"The coming general election is very important for the country where in this election, the power given by the people to the BN would be given back to the rakyat in line with the practice of parliamentary democracy.
"In this regard, the best option for the people of Sabah, especially in the Tenom area, to determine their future, ensure that the economy in our area continues to grow, to look after the people in the urban or rural areas, is none other than the Barisan Nasional," he added.