KENINGAU: Prime Minister Najib Razak today promised to close the development gap between the peninsula and Sabah, pledging more projects and allocations to the state if it returns Barisan Nasional (BN) to power in the May 9 polls.
He officially opened the state’s third Urban Transformation Centre (UTC) in this interior part of Sabah today, and announced that a fourth one in Sandakan has been identified.
He said there were also plans to build another such centre in Bintulu, Sarawak, adding that both states would soon have the most UTCs compared to other states.
Further allocations would be made for the perimeter survey of “tanah adat” (customary land) in Sabah as well as to uplift the promising livestock industry in Keningau.
“Never has a PM given funds for the perimeter survey of tanah adat. I have been allocating for three years now, at RM20 million a year to Sabah. And I am willing to increase that in future,” he told a crowd of thousands.
Najib said besides the UTC, the Pan Borneo Highway, RM1 billion allocation for dilapidated Sabah schools and BR1M (1Malaysia People’s Aid) increment were meant to benefit the people.
“We are able to look after the welfare of the people because we have governed the country well.
“I care very much for Sabah. That is why I keep visiting Sabah. In fact, during these 11 days of campaigning, I have already been to Sabah twice.
“There are people who had been the PM for 22 years but we have not seen his face here. Maybe he doesn’t care about Sabah,” he said, in an apparent dig at former prime minister turned opposition leader Dr Mahathir Mohamad.
Najib also said the nation’s currency reserves were in healthy condition.
“We have reserves of US$110 billion. During Mahathir’s time, it plummeted to US$20 billion.
“So who can accuse us (of not looking after the economy)? There have been many lies and fake news played up by the opposition to create hatred towards the government,” he said.
“Our country should not be built on that basis. If we want our Malaysia to be ‘onsoi’ (a Murut word meaning all is good), then we have to pick BN.”