Anwar: More ‘positive news’ in Sabah next week
UPDATED @ 04:07:28 PM 02-08-2012
PETALING JAYA, Aug 2 — Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim hinted today of more “positive news” for the opposition in Sabah next week, in the wake of last weekend’s declaration by two senior Barisan Nasional (BN) lawmakers to support Pakatan Rakyat (PR).
“I will be back in Sabah on the 12th (of August)... with some more positive news,” the opposition leader told a press conference here.
“Because Umno has ridiculed me for so long, saying that there are no surprises,” said a smiling Anwar (picture).
Anwar’s last trip to the east Malaysian state saw BN MPs Datuk Seri Lajim Ukin and Datuk Seri Wilfred Mojilip Bumburing announce their support for the federal opposition, on top of their resignations from their party posts.
PR leaders were quick to describe the move as a major milestone for the opposition front in Sabah, a state long labelled as BN’s fixed deposit.
Anwar, however, denied that PR’s acceptance of Lajim and Bumburing into its fold was encouraging the “frog culture”.
He said both men had left BN over their own growing disillusionment with the ruling pact and Umno and how the government had purportedly failed to fulfil its promises to east Malaysians.
“You heard the speech of Wilfred Bumburing... suggesting he has absolutely no confidence in the prime minister and the Umno government... the vast disparity between the rich and the poor (in Sabah), the marginalisation of the masses there and the failure to accept recommendations for the formation of the RCI (Royal Commission of Inquiry) on the illegals issue,” he said.
Both Lajim and Bumburing have launched separate PR-aligned movements — Angkatan Perubahan Sabah (APS) and Pakatan Perubahan Sabah (PPS) — as their political platforms leading into the coming polls.
When expounding on his quit decision last weekend, Bumburing had cited the widespread influx of illegal immigrants into the eastern state and Putrajaya’s oversight on this issue, among the chief reasons.
“This is the mother of all problems in Sabah,” he had said in a delayed video broadcast on the Ustream TV Merdeka Rakyat website.
In Sabah, the deep-seated issue of illegal immigrants is expected to dominate the coming polls.
The Najib administration has agreed to the formation of the RCI but is yet to kick off the probe, owing to the delay in finalising the panel’s terms of reference.