KOTA KINABALU: De facto law minister VK Liew has slammed a report by a Sabah-based online portal which claimed he had issued fake identity cards during a community programme.
The minister in the Prime Minister’s Department said there was no truth in the report by SabahKini2.com which said that there were complainants in the programme who acquired old identity cards through “Project IC” but had yet to receive their MyKads.
“I categorically deny the allegation of facilitating the issuance of fake MyKads through ‘Project IC’ during the public complaints programme that was held together with the Batu Sapi Rakyat Service Centre at Karamunting flat in Sandakan on Sunday.
“In fact, a report has been lodged with the police and relevant agencies against SabahKini2.com for disseminating false news and creating fear among locals,” he said in a statement here today.
Project IC is the name used to describe the allegation of systematic granting of citizenship to immigrants (whether legal or otherwise) by giving them identity cards or MyKad.
The RCI on illegal immigrants in Sabah in 2013 did not deny the existence of the project but the commission absolved the government of ever creating Project IC and instead blamed corrupt officials and syndicates for creating the problem.
Liew said it was “most irresponsible” for the news portal to have resorted to such underhanded tactics to gain cheap publicity.
“The damage done to the ministry under my purview is very serious and stern action will have to be taken against the portal (to stop it) reporting false news in the future.
“The application form as claimed by SabahKini2.com is not valid and it was not even signed by any of the officers present.”
He said the accusations, which have led the rakyat to believe Parti Warisan Sabah was actively promoting Project IC in Batu Sapi, were baseless and part of a “cheap political game”.
Liew explained that the objective of the programme was to assist the people in tackling grouses related to dealings with government departments and agencies.
He said their role was merely to advise the people on their issues and refer them to the related government departments and agencies.
“I do not have the power to approve any applications for ICs. Indeed, the government is serious about solving the perennial problem of illegal immigrants in Sabah,” he said.
Liew said they received 476 reports throughout the programme.
Nine government departments and agencies were present during the programme. They were the Sandakan Water Department, Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd (Sandakan), police, Immigration Department, Health Department, National Registration Department, Sandakan Municipal Council, Public Works Department and the Fire and Rescue Department.