Sunday, January 19, 2014

We will never give up

KOTA KINABALU, January 19, 2014: One day when Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP) has a Yang Berhormat (YB), be it four or 10 years later, it will prove that SAPP is a Sabah-based party that never gives up.

SAPP president Datuk Seri Panglima Yong Teck Lee said people had predicted that SAPP would “gulung tikar” (come to an end) after the 13th General Election (GE13).

“Let us all be patient. One day, be it four or 10 years later, when SAPP wins a YB (a constituency), we will be revived,” he said, while urging party members to continue SAPP’s struggle.

“And the people will say that this party, SAPP, is a party that never gives up.”

Yong said this during a Chinese New Year reunion dinner with members and supporters organized by SAPP Luyang Central Liaison Committee (CLC) headed by SAPP vice president cum Wanita chief Melanie Chia on Friday.

Although none of SAPP’s candidates won in the last General Election, he said, this did not dampen the spirits of CLC members in every constituency.

On the other hand, Yong pointed out that some political parties have won in the GE13 but ended up in chaos, with some members even jumping ship.

“The General Election results last year were not pretty, but we saw the party members’ passionate support and that gave Sabahans hope.”

Meanwhile, he said SAPP will be taking a break from holding their Chinese New Year event this year, an event the party had continuously organised for over 20 years.

“SAPP has been holding cultural events in Foh Sang for the past 20 years. When we organized these events, other parties followed suit, and when we stopped organising, they did not do it as well,” Yong said.

He also stressed that Luyang was the heart of politics for the Chinese in Sabah.

“In the past 50 years, many Chinese from the outskirts moved to Kota Kinabalu. A majority of them settled in Luyang while a few went to Kepayan and Likas.

“Every Chinese person in Sabah has friends or relatives in Luyang,” Yong said, adding that winning the Luyang constituency would be a big victory.

He added he had once warned the Democratic Action Party (DAP) and opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim that Hiew King Cheu would jump ship once he won, but still the Pakatan Rakyat coalition decided to let Hiew stand in the Luyang state constituency.

Yong said while SAPP has became more low key after GE13, he was hoping that other opposition YBs could play a more effective roles in the State Legislative Assembly sitting.

However, in the first State Assembly sitting after the general election, he pointed out that the opposition leaders had instead fought amongst themselves on the matter of whether Klias assemblyman Datuk Seri Panglima Lajim Ukin or Tamparuli assemblyman Datuk Wilfred Bumburing would be the opposition chief in the State Legislative Assembly.

On the kangkung (water spinach) issue, Yong said the jokes surrounding kangkung were not created by political parties, but by ordinary people who were suffering from inflation.

“This year’s Chinese New Year will not be like before. Ever since the schools reopened, there have been floods, power failure, glass shattering and everything else has become more expensive.”

Federal and state committees were set up to address the rising cost of goods because the issue was a challenge for the government of the day, he said.

“What we (SAPP) have said turned out to be true,” Yong said, referring to inflation, security, livelihood issues and PR candidates jumping ship.

“We once said that Sabah Electricity Sdn Bhd (SESB) should be managed by Sabah. The power disruption in Sabah and Labuan (on Friday) was certainly the first.”

Yong also stressed on the importance for a government administration to be trustworthy and accountable to the people.

Aside from that, he said the Selangor Islamic Religious Department’s (Jais) raid on the Bible Society of Malaysia (BSM) and seizure of Bibles containing the word ‘Allah’ without informing the state executive council (exco) prior to the raid was boiled down to “miscommunication”.

Furthermore, Yong said, Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) deputy president Azmin Ali was then removed from the board of Selangor State Economic Development Corporation (PKNS).

“If Anwar says Azmin has to be reinstated as board member of PKNS, he can also ask for the Bibles to be returned.

“Government administration is vital, it has to be trustworthy and accountable to the people,” he pointed out.
Price panel is a gimmick: SAPP
KOTA KINABALU: The announcement of the formation of Special Committee To Tackle The Cost of Living by the Deputy Prime Minister is just a political gimmick to save the political career of those in power and not to tackle the price hike issue, said former Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Yong Teck Lee.

Similarly, Chief Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Musa Aman has also instructed the Ministry of Consumer Affairs and Community Development to monitor reports on the exorbitant hikes in the prices of goods and services, he noted.

To substantiate his argument, Yong, who is also Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP) President, contended that if the Federal Government under the leadership of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak was really concerned and cared for the people's wellbeing, it should not have hiked the prices of fuel and power tariff in the first place, which he regarded as the main contributing factor to the current widespread hikes in the price of consumer goods and services.

Speaking at the annual dinner hosted by SAPP Luyang CLC at the Winner Hotel Friday, Yong observed that the overwhelming mocking of the Prime Minister's comment about the price of kangkung by Netizens in the social media like Facebook, Whatsapp and You Tube demonstrated the people's frustration and suffering over price hikes.

"The Prime Minister said the people should be thankful to the Government that the price of kangkung has gone down. Who doesn't know that kangkung can be easily found in the drain? Fuel and electricity are the main contributing factor for price hikes. This is simple economics.

It shows that the Prime Minister is absolutely clueless of the people's plight!" he said.

Yong continued that the ongoing phenomenon proved SAPP's predictions before the 13th general election that if Barisan Nasional (BN) returns to power, prices of goods and services would be bound to go up, and that the Pakatan Rakyat (PR) elected representatives would quit their parties.

He then recalled that he had before the last election campaign period cautioned PR de facto leader Datuk Seri Anwar and repeated the warning during the campaign period that current Luyang Assemblyman Dr Hiew King Cheu might leave the party (DAP) after the election.

"Unfortunately, they (PR) still fielded him (Hiew) as a candidate.

Now, he has not only betrayed the people of Luyang but also the people of Sabah.

"Hence, it has been proven that SAPP is a credible political party where speaking the truth is part of SAPP's culture," said Yong.

He continued that although SAPP did not win any seat in the last election, nonetheless it is proud that its dignity and support from its members are intact, unlike the MCA and LDP which are currently still plagued by internal fights.

Yong also expressed disappointment over the present bunch of state opposition elected representatives, that they do not have the guts to cast a vote of 'no confidence' against the Chief Minister, except for fighting among themselves over the so-called 'opposition leader' post as prevailed in the first State Assembly sitting after the GE13.

He also quipped that when SAPP was still actively organising the various annual Chinese festivals like the Chinese New Year celebration and the Moon Cake Festival to promote the Chinese cultures and traditions, the other political parties too were clamouring to organise them.

"But, when SAPP stopped, they too followed," he quipped.

However, Yong explained that this does not mean that SAPP has quit doing it for good, but was just taking a break since it did not win any seat in the last general election.

He also assured that SAPP would continue with its struggle for the State and its people.

Daily Express

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