Shafie Apdal: Impossible for Musa to be unaware of projects

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KUALA LUMPUR: Parti Warisan Sabah (PWS) president Shafie Apdal has questioned how Sabah Chief Minister Musa Aman could deny knowledge about projects undertaken by the federal rural and regional development ministry in Sabah.

His retort came after Musa was reported as saying that the federal ministry dealt directly with state agencies such as the Sabah Water Department, when carrying out projects in the state.

The Star Online had quoted the chief minister as saying this was among the reasons why some of the ministry’s projects in Sabah, costing millions of ringgit, did not benefit the rural communities.

In a press conference held earlier today, Shafie said the implementation of National Key Result Areas (NKRA) projects was planned by the rural and regional development ministry and all Sabah state agencies.

NKRA projects involve rural water supply, rural electricity supply and rural roads.

Shafie said the Performance Management and Delivery Unit (Pemandu) was the coordinator for the implementation of such projects.

All projects were designed, researched and decided during sessions held at NKRA labs, which were held at the IOI Palm Garden Hotel in 2009 and at the MAS Academy in 2013.

He said the list of infrastructural projects was proposed by the state government through various state ministries and Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd (SESB).

“In fact, I learned that there was only one contractor for the supply of spare parts for water projects, which was appointed by the Sabah Water Department. Does the state chief minister not even know this?”

Shafie revealed that after the projects were finalised, the proposed projects were presented to Prime Minister Najib Razak in 2009.

All findings and NKRA laboratory results were presented to the public in the peninsula, Sabah and Sarawak during the Government Transformation Programme (GTP) Open Day.

In Sabah, the GTP Open Day was held at the Magellan Sutera Harbour Hotel in Kota Kinabalu in 2009. It was attended by the Sabah chief minister.

Apart from this, Shafie said all statements and status of implementation of the NKRA projects were also presented every month to the ministry and Pemandu. These presentations were chaired by the prime minister or deputy prime minister.

“During the presentation, the Sabah and Sarawak heads of the departments were present and involved in giving opinions and suggestions to solve the problems related to project implementation and reporting them to the state government.”

He said the Sabah government also established the one stop agency (OSA) committee to help resolve issues related to the implementation of the projects.

“The committee is chaired by the Sabah state secretary, who reports directly to the Sabah chief minister. Don’t tell me Musa didn’t know this. It’s impossible that the Sabah chief minister had no information about the NKRA projects in Sabah.”

He quipped that even if it was true that Musa didn’t know this, Pemandu publishes an annual report on project implementation and sends it to the chief minister and heads of the departments for their information.

Last month, RM52 million in cash, RM60 million in bank accounts, nine luxury cars and other luxury items were seized by MACC following the arrest of four men in Sabah.

The four men, including two Sabah Water Department (SWD) senior officers, were nabbed for alleged kickbacks from federal projects in Sabah. These projects were said to be worth RM3.3 billion.

A few days after the seizure, Sabah Deputy Chief Minister Joseph Pairin Kitingan said the state government had nothing to do with the federal allocations to the Sabah Water Department.

He also said the projects, allocated since 2010, were under the rural and regional development ministry during Shafie Apdal’s tenure as the minister.