Cancellation of invite OK: Shafie
Published on: Friday, July 10, 2020
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Shafie (centre) with state leaders and senior government officials taking group photo with some of the recipients of land grants at the community hall in Keningau on Thursday.
Kota Kinabalu: Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal confirmed that an invitation for him to be guest of honour at the State-level Teachers’ Day celebration on Thursday was cancelled at the last minute.

However, he said, it was okay for him and that it was their right whether to invite him or not.

He said he was invited to launch the event after the State approved a host of measures, including monetary aid for schools, for the construction of hostels and flood relief, among others.

“We even approved face masks and sanitiser for all 221 government schools and 15 private schools in Sabah. So they invited me to launch the event and I immediately agreed. But I was told late Wednesday evening that I could no longer attend. It is okay and there’s no need to continue the issue,” he said when asked about it.

Earlier, in KENINGAU, Shafie said although his candidacy for the Prime Minister’s post among Pakatan Harapan parties was a solution for the impasse (whether to settle for Tun Dr Mahathir or Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim), there was indecision on the part of PH (Pakatan Harapan).

“When I was nominated as Prime Minister, it was to solve the current political impasse. However, based on the recent statement by PH, it shows that they are indecisive,” he said after presenting 6,425.51 hectares in 2,300 individual grants to 101 villages in Keningau and Sook at the community hall, Thursday.

The PH presidential council said on Monday that it would support Anwar as its candidate for prime minister, following a tussle between the coalition’s component parties with Amanah and DAP urging PKR to return to PH consensus and back Dr Mahathir Mohamad as its nominee for the post.

In a joint statement, Anwar, Amanah president Mohamad Sabu and DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng said PH was committed to its original stand to name the PKR leader as its prime minister in the event that it wins back federal power. 

They added that the council had also discussed the proposal for Shafie, who is Warisan president, to be nominated for the post.

Mahathir, who made the proposal, also suggested that Anwar and Mukhriz Mahathir, who was deputy president of PPBM, be appointed as deputy prime ministers under Shafie. 

Shafie said he had had no word from Anwar on the matter.

“We’ll see if there will be a discussion,” he added. “For us, there is no problem if that is the solution wanted.

“But there has been no one from Sabah as prime minister before,” he said.

“It doesn’t have to be me because there was a lot of tussle going on about whether to accept Mahathir or Anwar.” 

Shafie also said parliament would convene for a month from July 13 to Aug. 27 and on the agenda are some matters to be discussed.

Shafie believes that elected representatives (YBs) from his government (Parti Warisan Sabah) did not jump ship in the last few months as they (YBs) all have a strong spirit and they want to serve the people and the state.

“As a country with a democratic system, elections are there, if we win ... be victorious and if we lose...be a loser.

“I didn’t choose anyone. I didn’t buy him (Upko President Datuk Madius) but he told me they really wanted to work with Warisan and others because Warisan is a local party. Warisan is a local party and so is Upko. That’s the wish. Not about money, not about promises for position ... no ... not at all,” he claimed.

On the presentation, he said the event was full of meaning in the government’s efforts to promise the people of the state to hand over land grants as well as gazetted some villages. He said some recipients had been waiting for more than 40 years to obtain a land grant and this was a government step to enable the land grant to be given to those who lived in the villages and had no land grant.

“Today and before that we have handed over the land grant to the people on the East Coast. Sandakan and today in Keningau. He said the effort to hand over the land grant to the villagers who have the right will continue elsewhere.

“I also ask the villagers not to sell the land provided by the government but develop it. The government can make money but the money can run out but if the land is developed to the end of life, the results will come not only to us but to our children and grandchildren. 

“What is important is the people develop this land,” he said.

He said the state government had launched blue print to help landowners with vegetable and other agricultural produce at their request and at a price that would generate income.

As for the land issue concerning the Bagahak Datu case, he could not go into detail as this matter was before the court and It would amount to contempt of court.

Present at the event were State Infrastructure Development Minister, Datuk Peter Anthiony, State Government Secretary, Datuk Haji Safar Untung, Rural Development Assistant Minister, Rasinin Koutis, State Land and Survery Director, Bernard Liew Chau Min, District Officer, Hassan Mahali and others senior government official.


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