KOTA KINABALU, May 4: Najib Razak wants Sabah to remain as the ‘fixed deposit’ for the Barisan Nasional (BN). He said that this was to ensure the BN would continue to be at the helm of the country’s administration. “A year ago during a gathering here, I had described Sabah as the fixed deposit for the BN. Today I come to see if the value of that deposit has remained or has gone down. “I am very happy to note that Sabah is still the fixed deposit for the BN,” he said at a dinner with state BN leaders here Monday night.
Najib, who is BN chairman, said that the BN’s strength, however, should be injected with fresh impetus to ensure that the party continued to win the support of the people. “The support will not be there forever without the leaders, elected representatives and members of the administration nurturing it. “In line with this, I’ve mooted the ‘1Malaysia. People First. Performance Now’ concept,” he said. Citing Sabah as the best example of how the “1Malaysia” concept was being practised, Najib said that although the state had about 45 ethnic groups, the people were united and lived in peace and harmony. “Even in Umno there are Kadazandusun members who sometimes wear their traditional attire but equally comfortable wearing the Malay traditional attire. ‘”What is important is that we are all Malaysians,” he said.
Najib also called on BN leaders to carry out walkabouts to get close to the people at the grassroots level. “We should go down to the field and see for ourselves the problems faced by the people because what we hear from the comfort of our air-conditioned office will not be the same as seeing their actual problems. “I hope that his approach can be adopted from now on until the coming general election. The people is getting wiser and they are now demanding that we listen to them and help them solve their problems,” he said.
Najib also said that the federal government would continue to assist Sabah, particularly in terms of implementing development projects. “That is why I appointed four ministers and five deputy ministers from Sabah. Not only that there is an increase in the number, their portfolios have also been strengthened,” he said. “If previously there is a minister whom the (Sabah) people said only in charge of museums, that minister is now in charge of rural development. “The same goes with the post of foreign minister. Who would have thought that a Sabahan will be appointed to the post, but now this has become a reality,” he said. The four ministers from are Science, Technology and Innovation Minister Maximus Ongkili, Plantation Industries and Commodities Minister Bernard Dompok, Rural and Regional Development Minister Mohd Shafie Apdal and Foreign Minister Anifah Aman. (The Mighty Pen says: Najib has no choice in appointing them, otherwise his ass will be burnt!).
Najib however hoped that those holding posts at the federal level would not think only of Sabah’s interest but also that of the country. Also presence were Najib’s wife pussycat, Rosmah Mansor, Chief Minister Musa Aman, Deputy Chief Ministers Joseph Pairin Kitingan, Yahya Hussin and Raymond Tan, Sabah Umno deputy chief Salleh Said and BN component leaders.
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