KOTA KINABAlU: Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Panglima Haji Hajiji Haji Noor has no intention to mislead the people of Sabah on the 40 per cent Federal Special Grant.
Parti Gagasan Rakyat Sabah Information Chief Datuk Nizam Abu Bakar Titingan asserted that the Chief Minister has made it clear that the State Government led by Gabungan Rakyat Sabah (GRS) has prioritised the restoration of Sabah’s rights as agreed in the 1963 Malaysia Agreement (MA63) that included the 40 per cent special grant.
“It appears that it is Tungku Assemblyman Assafal Alian who is trying to mislead the people in the vain hope of covering up for the failure of his party, Warisan, to get anything substantial when they were in power,” he said in a statement, here today.
Nizam said the Chief Minister had reiterated in the State Legislative Assembly that rather than waiting and getting nothing, the GRS-led State Government had decided to accept the annual payment of RM125.6 million from the Federal Government while continuing to negotiate and pursuing the 40 per cent special grant formula. The RM126.6 million has been disbursed to benefit the rakyat through the construction of Rumah Mesra SMJ affordable housing in all 73 state constituencies.
“Is Assafal saying that Sabah should refuse the RM125 million? Then the people should ask him why did Warisan agree to accept a mere RM53.4 million from the Federal Government when Warisan was in power? This was evident in Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal’s Budget 2020 speech of 15 November 2019 as the then Chief Minister, in which he has agreed to accept the RM53.4 million,” he added.
Nizam said If Warisan had continued to remain in power, for 2022 Sabah would have received only RM80.1 million instead of RM125.6 million. Perhaps, Assafal should explain this rather than trying to hoodwink the people on this issue.
As such, he said it is unbecoming for Assafal to twist facts by politicising and continuing to harp on the issue that his party, Warisan had failed to address. Hajiji, as the Chief Minister is firm in looking for solutions and doing it quietly and rigorously behind the scene.