Fadillah: Stable govt that understand needs of people, states more important than ‘powerless’ DPM post

Fadillah (left) checking on the progress of the Unimas university teaching hospital construction progress. Photo credit: Fadillah Yusof's Facebook page

By Karen Bong

KUCHING, Oct 26: It is more important to establish a stable Federal government that understands the needs of all Malaysians as well as the needs at the State level, especially in Sarawak and Sabah, rather than creating a ‘powerless’ deputy prime minister (DPM) post which is meaningless and will not deliver the results.

This is the view of caretaker Works Minister Dato Sri Fadillah Yusof who agreed with Premier of Sarawak Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg that a DPM post for Sarawak or Sabah would not necessarily resolve any problems, but it must be one with real power and not just for window dressing.

“In the context of Sarawak, our focus is on reinstating the rights to Sarawak.

“What’s important now is to establish a stable government that understands the needs of the people of Malaysia as well as the needs at state level, especially in Sarawak and Sabah.

“For example, the infrastructure in Sarawak and Sabah is still lagging behind and huge allocations are needed so that due attention and focus can be given to close the infrastructure gap in areas that are still left behind,” he told reporters today.

The Petra Jaya incumbent also pointed out that there are many areas requiring urgent attention including poverty eradication programmes in Sabah and Sarawak, which has vast geological areas but is at an infrastructure disadvantage.

“We need to focus on these areas so as to bring results that will elevate the socio-economic standards of the people in Sabah and Sarawak as well as other states left behind in Peninsular Malaysia,” he added.

Fadillah was met after visiting the Universiti Malaysia Sarawak’s (Unimas) university teaching hospital construction site to check on its progress and officiating a ceremony to present PerantiSiswa tablets to Unimas students.

On Sepanggar incumbent Datuk Mohd Aziz Jamman’s comments that people of Sabah do not want the DPM position but full and immediate implementation of Malaysia Agreement 1963 (MA63), Fadillah said efforts in pursuing MA63 and the Inter-Governmental Commission (IGC) Report have never stopped.

“The first successful step was amending the constitution to recognise both agreements. That was done.

“Moving forward, the demand is for the new Federal government to ensure realising all the provisions and agreements in the MA63 and IGC Report including administrative power and autonomy in certain sectors,” he explained.

One matter still under negotiation, Fadillah pointed out, was the parliamentary seats ratio to ensure Peninsula states do not have the supermajority with 35 per cent of the seats being allocated for Sarawak and Sabah. — DayakDaily