KOTA KINABALU,Mar 22 – The Gabungan Rakyat Sabah (GRS) struggle did not end with victory in the Sabah election, instead, the task of assisting the people has just begun, Prime Minister Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin said.
Muhyiddin, who is also Perikatan Nasional (PN) chairman, said during the state election last September, he heard the grievances of the people, who wanted changes in Sabah with better development, especially in terms of infrastructure, and poverty, to be addressed.
“The people of Sabah have placed their faith in us… and that is why when we are already here (ruling the state), we must not forget the trust given to us.
“We must shoulder this mandate with great determination so the hopes of Sabahans can be translated in the form of assistance, support and development in every field,” he said in his speech at a GRS dinner event here yesterday.
Also present were Chief Minister Datuk Hajiji Noor, who is also GRS and Sabah PN chairman, Deputy Chief Minister 1 Datuk Seri Bung Moktar Radin, who is Sabah Barisan Nasional (BN) chairman, Deputy Chief Minister II Datuk Seri Jeffrey Kitingan, who is Sabah STAR president, and Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department Datuk Seri Maximus Ongkili, who is Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) president.
GRS is a coalition made up of PN, BN and PBS.
Muhyiddin said Covid-19 has put the people in a very difficult situation in terms of survival, adding that as such, all assistance must be delivered in the shortest time possible.
The prime minister said it has also been a big challenge for the government to provide assistance to the people, and in this regard, it took an extraordinary effort by the government to overcome those challenges.
“I understand it is not something easy. (It is) most challenging, even compared to what the federal government had faced before, and because of this, we have had to take extraordinary efforts, with so many different kinds of challenges thrown at us almost every day.
“Although there is no reference material or past experience to bank on, we are more or less dealing with the situation… We have delivered the vaccine, efforts to help the people return to normalcy and a good life are being implemented little by little, and step by step, we are managing the people’s health and economic problems,” he said.
Muhyiddin said the federal government has always given 110% support to the Sabah government under GRS’ leadership, especially in developing the state and overcoming poverty.
The prime minister said the federal government will also give priority and special attention to the people’s problems and needs in Sabah.
“There were times when the chief minister did not ask for allocations, (but) the federal government provided anyway to manage Covid-19 issues… In these trying times, I am proud to see Sabah, under GRS’ leadership, becoming stronger.
“I have established personal relationships (with GRS leaders). The government will continue helping the people, and it is important to know the problems faced… The cooperation between the federal government and GRS must not only be continued, but strengthened as well,” he said.
Muhyiddin said he will be briefed tomorrow on the state government’s plans for the people, after which he will provide his own views to ensure the coalition is able to fulfil the people’s mandate in the best possible way.