KOTA KINABALU: Datuk Seri Mohd. Shafie Apdal, in a somewhat ironic twist, seems to be shooting himself in the foot as he questions the political maturity in this state following the formation of the Gabungan Rakyat Sabah (GRS) as a new and stable political alliance.
GRS Chief of Information, Datuk Joniston Bangkuai, pointed out the irony in Mohd. Shafie’s criticism, noting that Shafie himself once led a government formed in 2018 through the defection of five State Legislative Assembly Members (ADUN) from Barisan Nasional (BN).
Furthermore, he said Mohd. Shafie’s recent ill-fated attempt, along with a few UMNO ADUNs, to unseat the GRS government in January this year, is hard for the people to swallow and marks a dark episode in the state’s political history.
“It’s rather amusing to see Mohd. Shafie decries the state of affairs in Parliament, effectively shooting himself in the foot. It’s a stark reminder if we look back at how Warisan came to power after the 2018 general election.
“He now hypocritically talks as if his party won a sweeping victory in 2018, while in reality, they came to power because of party-hopping ADUNs, a fact he conveniently overlooks.
“As the representatives of Sabah becoming more politically mature and united to ensure the stability and prosperity of the state, Shafie instead seems intent on wreaking havoc,” Joniston said.
GRS Chairman, Datuk Seri Panglima Haji Hajiji Haji Noor, in his recent address, said the formation of GRS reflects the political maturity of Sabah as local parties unite for the benefit of the state.
Mohd. Shafie, however, denied these claims, continuing to criticise the political maturity in Sabah and accusing it of being a result of party-hopping.
It must be emphasised that UMNO ADUNs and Parti Warisan members who joined GRS did so due to their disagreement with Mohd Shafie’s undemocratic actions and his attempt with other UMNO ADUNs to overthrow Hajiji’s government.
“Pakatan Harapan ADUNs, too, refused to align with Mohd Shafie, choosing instead to support Hajiji for the sake of political stability,” Joniston added.
Elaborating further, Joniston stated that Mohd. Shafie’s actions last January were a blatant attempt at a power grab, openly flouting the principles of democracy.
He emphatically asserted that GRS has rightfully earned the mandate from the people of Sabah in the recent state election, thereby establishing the government democratically in collaboration with local parties and BN allies.
“Yet, the hard-won political stability was almost shattered by the unbridled political cravings of these leaders, hell-bent on cobbling together a government through backdoor tactics.
“These leaders brazenly endeavoured to coerce several local parties and the Pakatan Harapan, shamelessly and without any sense of remorse, to betray the majority of Sabahans who had decisively chosen GRS.
“Does Mohd. Shafie genuinely believe that his schemed power usurpation was constitutional? Clearly, he’s indifferent to such legalities, obsessed with his own lust for power over Sabah,” he said.