Sunday, January 19, 2014

We are not retreating - Melanie

SAPP may have been washed-out in GE13 but its still retained its dignity unlike peninsular opposition Pakatan Rakyat which has seen defections.

KOTA KINABALU, January 19, 2014: Despite its washout performance in the last general election, the Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP) is not about to retreat from the political arena in the state.

Brushing aside speculations by political observers that SAPP is on its last leg, the party’s women’s wing chief Melanie Chia said the rumours were unfounded.

“SAPP still has the fighting spirit to continue fighting for the people. We are fully aware that there are still unfinished jobs for us,” she told members and supporters at the party’s annual dinner here recently.

Chia who is former Luyang state representative, attributed SAPP’s whitewash in the 13th general election to voters’ desperation for change which compelled them to choose between Barisan Nasional and Pakatan Rakyat coalitions without giving consideration to local factors and parties.

She said the characteristics of the Borneo states were clearly different in every aspect from those in the peninsula states and could not be ignored.

“For example, we in Sabah are still free to use the word “Allah” but not in Selangor where one can be arrested for uttering the word.

“Hence, one country, two systems is still applicable and much needed in Sabah,” she said, stressing that this was possible because Sabah is different from the other states in Malaysia.

Chia also attempted to hammer home the predictions the party had made during the election campaign should the ruling coalition and certain politicians hang on to power as grim truths.

Among these predictions were that fuel prices and electricity tariffs would be raised as the country’s foreign debts grew.

She said it could now be seen that even promises by the ruling coalition prior to the election to resolve the perennial issue of flooding in the state was fanciful.

Chai also took a pokes at critics in the opposition Pakatan Rakyat coalition who had questioned the credentials of the Sabah-based party.

“During the last general election campaign period, talk was rife that SAPP would return to BN after the election. Now, look who are the ones who jumped,” she said.

DAP’s Hiew King Cheu, the current Luyang representative in the state assembly, quit DAP and the opposition coalition and turned BN-friendly months after his election on an opposition platform.

Two other defectors from the opposition who have declared their support for the BN are PKR’s Kadamaian asssemblyman Jeremy Malajad and state assemblyman Jailani Hamdan of Matunggong.

Chia also observed that despite Sabah remaining in the BN fold, the state continued to be marginalised and mistreated by national parties and their leaders in Sabah who she said are “still being led by the nose like buffaloes”.

SAPP, she said, cannot tolerate this and would continue to fight for political autonomy for the state and ensure that the people in Sabah enjoy the resources of the state.

Also present at the dinner were party president Yong Teck Lee, deputy presidents Eric Majimbun and Liew Teck Chan, secretary-general Richard Yong, vice president Wong Yit Ming, and information chief Chong Pit Fah.
by Queville To

SAPP still has work to do – Chia

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP) still has work to do, work that can only be done by a Sabah-based political party.

SAPP vice president cum Wanita chief Melanie Chia said the party lost in the 13th General Election (GE13) because of the big environment, whereby people wanted a change of government.

“The people only saw a two-party system and believed that could work,” she said.

However, Chia said Sabah still needed a ‘One Country Two Systems’ administration as our State was different, as exemplified by the use of ‘Allah’ in Sabah.

Chia, who is also SAPP Luyang Central Liaison Committee (CLC) chairwoman, said this during the branch’s Chinese New Year reunion dinner here on Friday. The event was graced by SAPP president Datuk Seri Panglima Yong Teck Lee.

Chia thanked the members and supporters who attended the reunion dinner because with unity, there is hope.

“Although we have lost (in GE13), they have not destroyed us. Because SAPP fights for Sabah’s future,” she said.

Chia pointed out that what the party said during GE13 has turned into reality as national debt continued to increase.

To counter this, Chia said the government had increased toll rates, revised fuel prices and electricity tariff as well as arranged for the implementation of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) to increase the government’s revenue.

“The people’s livelihood problems that were talked about during the GE13 have not been solved,” she said, adding that SAPP would continue to fight for Malaysian citizens in Sabah, including the five per cent oil royalty.

“During the general election, there were rumours saying that we would return to Barisan Nasional (BN). Did we? But there have been other people who joined (BN after GE13). Who is lying now?” she continued.

As the Year of Horse approaches, Chia urged the people to stand up for themselves and realize (the situation they are in).

“The truth never lies. Sabah is marginalized; Sabah is still the poorest (state); our natural resources are still not well managed; we do not get the right return for what we have; we are not treated fairly.

“If we still allow our destiny to be controlled by parties or people from the west (Malaysia), we will forever be like buffalo kena cucuk hidung (buffalo being pierced on the nose),” said Chia.

19/01/2014 The Borneo Post

No comments:

Post a Comment