‘Something not right’ in revival of Sabah projects, warns PBS

PBS says the Sabah government led by Shafie Apdal has failed the people. (Bernama pic)

MATUNGGONG: Sabah’s PBS said the Warisan-led state government has failed to live up to its slogans of transparency and efficiency more than four months after taking over the state administration.

“This is the reality beginning to set in. The initial euphoria has worn off, and people are uneasy with the subtle manner in which key public appointments are being manipulated by politicians,” PBS secretary-general Johnny Mositun said at the party’s Matunggong division meeting here today.

“Ultimately, these officials will legitimise dubious projects for their political masters and their cronies,” he said.

Mositun said he was concerned about “brokers” converging on Sabah with proposals for projects that he claimed were “fronts” for grabbing land and state assets, adding that they would later change hands or be converted to other uses for people with connections.

Mositun said the Tanjung Aru Eco Development (TAED) project by the state government was criticised and politicised by Warisan, and is currently in limbo.

“The state government will not give a firm commitment that it is scrapped as promised. Why? The reason is clear. Like the Kaiduan Dam case, this government will find some excuse to revive it by giving it some other name or tinkering with the plans and scope.

“In the end, it’s the leaders and their cronies who’ll make money out of these very projects or lands after lying to the people that these projects would be scrapped,” he said.

Mositun said he was also concerned about Tan Chong Motors’ proposed assembly plant at Kota Kinabalu Industrial Park (KKIP), as announced by Chief Minister Shafie Apdal.

“The company had in fact made a similar proposal during my time as a deputy speaker, but there were conditions that held it up. Now, suddenly, the project is approved.”

Mositun said many investors have been turned off from KKIP as there were problems with reliable power supply, cost of production, logistics and high shipping costs.

He said everywhere he went, people expressed anger over the issue of illegal immigrants.

“PBS feels the same way. We only get wishy-washy assurances and excuses each time the rakyat questions the government.

“Strangely, we find outbreaks of fire at certain settlements with many squatters, resulting in demands for priority and easing of conditions for replacement MyKad, on humanitarian grounds. And more perplexing, a deputy minister even scolding and threatening the rakyat for complaining,” he said.

Mositun said the way things were going in Sabah, it was possible the present Warisan-led government might resort to a mid-term state election to shore up its waning support while it was still in power.

“Whatever it is, PBS will be ready for any eventuality,” he said.