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Setting up JKDM in Sabah: Was there Federal Cabinet decision?
Published on: Wednesday, May 22, 2024
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Setting up JKDM in Sabah: Was there Federal Cabinet decision?
Nelson (left) said those advocating for the resignation of Ewon (right), ought to grasp the fundamental principle of collective responsibility among cabinet members.
Kota Kinabalu: United Progressive Kinabalu Organisation (Upko) Secretary General Datuk Nelson Anggang said those advocating for the resignation of Datuk Ewon Benedick, the Minister of Entrepreneur Development and Cooperatives, ought to grasp the fundamental principle of collective responsibility among cabinet members.

In a statement, he said, this principle dictates that once a decision is reached by the Cabinet, all members must publicly support it, irrespective of any personal reservations they may have initially held. 

“Therefore, before demanding his resignation, it is crucial to ascertain whether there was indeed a Cabinet decision regarding the establishment of the Madani Village Development Committees (JKDM) in Sabah.

“Do these critics possess concrete evidence confirming the existence of a Cabinet decision supporting the formation of JKDM in Sabah?

“Ewon has clarified that no such decision was made by the Cabinet; rather, he emphasised the necessity of first engaging in discussions and negotiations with the Sabah government on this matter.  

“Datuk Joniston Bongkuai has also raised concerns about the establishment of JKDM in Sabah, given its potential overlap with the existing Village Development and Security Committee (JKKK),” he said.

Nelson said since there is no decision on the setting up of the JKDM in Sabah, then collective responsibility does not arise and to challenge Ewon to resign shows ignorance of those people demanding for it.

The leaders in question have argued that opposing the establishment of JKDM is akin to rejecting opportunities to secure more development funds for Sabah.

“Certainly, we welcome any allocation of funds from the Federal government to benefit Sabah.

However, the critical point at hand pertains to how these funds are managed and by whom, as this will shape the decision-making process and strategic plans moving forward.

“This discussion circles back to the underlying purpose behind the amendment of the Local Government Ordinance that is to grant Sabah the autonomy to govern its own affairs effectively.

“I urge these vocal leaders to adopt a broader perspective and consider the long-term implications.

The legislation and policies that led to the amendment of the local government ordinance not only support the current Sabah government but also lay the groundwork for any future Sabah administrations,” Nelson said.

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