Barisan Nasional (BN) leaders should be mindful of the power-sharing formula and equal treatment principle when working with smaller component parties, a Sabah leader said today.
Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) founder and president Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan said that the Prime Minister had assured its coalition members that even the smallest component party in BN plays an important role in ensuring political stability and is entitled to equal treatment.
“But in reality, there are bigger parties who try to dominate other parties, therefore causing discomfort among its leaders and members,” he said in his speech during the party’s 31st congress here today.
“We in PBS urge that the undertaking by the BN central leaders on ‘power sharing’ is not just mere sugar coated words, but a solid commitment to build greater collaboration with its component parties,” he said.
Pairin said that although the BN government is strong, relevant and powerful, it was built in the spirit of power sharing.
On a related subject, Pairin called for a fair distribution of the 13 new state seats to be contested in the coming elections.
“Currently, Umno already has about 15 per cent of the State Legislative Assembly seats. The 13 new seats should be shared amicably among BN component parties in Sabah based on the their ability to win and deliver seats,” he said.
PBS, the second biggest party in the state, has previously indicated that his party was eyeing six seats to contest.
Last weekend, United Pasokmomogun Kadazandusun Murut Organisation party president Datuk Madius Tangau said his party wanted to contest four of the new seats and also reminded the state and national leadership of their power sharing concept.
Pairin also emphasised on the perennial problem of the state’s illegal immigrant issues, and reiterated its stand on a re-registering and reissuing ICs to Malaysians in Sabah as a way to separate real citizens from
“It will be a long and strenuous exercise but will be worthwhile and in favour of our citizens. Sabah needs this as it is the only way to filter the contaminated list and bring back the people’s confidence,” he said.
Pairin, who heads a technical committee tasked with gathering feedback and making recommendations to a main committee on solving the problem, said he was submitting a second report “as soon as possible” with the recommendations.
This comes almost two years after the two committees were set up. The first report was reportedly sent back for amendments as several recommendations had allegedly been fulfilled.
Pairin acknowledged that despite the multi-billion ringgit Eastern Sabah Security Command, people were skeptical of the government’s commitment in solving its security woes due to the rampant kidnappings.
“How can we blame them? Millions of ringgit of equipment failed to do its magic. Where did we go wrong? Are we still under-equipped? Are our security forces untrained? Are they not alarmed enough or are the criminals just smarter than us?
“This is hurting the government’s image and while we are grateful for the allocation and efforts, PBS wants a solid solution to overcome these problems and regains the people’s trust,” he said.
Source : JULIA CHAN@The Malay Mail Online