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Saturday, October 30, 2010

Khalid: SAPP can't even stand on its own, how can it rule Sabah?

Ansari and Khalid
Batu Sapi - PKR took pot shots at Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP), a leading contender in the Batu Sapi race, declaring it was a “minor player” never likely to rule Sabah.

Selangor Mentri Besar Tan Sri Khalid Ibrahim told The Malaysian Insider that the tiny Sabah-based party could not stand on its own and likely would not be a “permanent feature” in Malaysian politics.

“We do not regard SAPP as a permanent feature because it cannot stand on its own and neither can they take over Sabah.

“They are just a party that says they want to do things but they do not have the ability to do it,” he said during his visit with PKR candidate Ansari Abdullah to several campaign spots here yesterday.

He noted that unlike the Pakatan Rakyat pact, SAPP had never proven before that it was capable to administer a state and was a viable alternative to the Barisan Nasional (BN).

As such, Khalid claimed that the real contest in Batu Sapi was between BN and PR, instead of between BN and SAPP, as many have described.

“The dream of taking over must be seen as a challenge between BN and PR,” he said.

He noted that this was the reason why PR had invited SAPP, a fellow opposition party in Sabah, to join the pact and strengthen the opposition's influence in the state.

“But they rejected. You cannot take over Sabah without being able to take over Putrajaya. And it is only if you can take over Putrajaya, that you can affect changes in Sabah.

“If you are unable to take over Putrajaya, which SAPP is, then you are just dreaming,” he said.

Filthy conditions at Kampong Gas, Batu Sapi
Khalid pointed out that unlike PR, SAPP did not have a combination of diverse parties or a cohesive team that was capable to administer the entire country.

“We have DAP, PKR and PAS. We have a combination that creates a more effective synergy. We asked them (SAPP) to be a part of our team but they did not want to.

“I think that if they continue this way, they will always remain a minor player in the politics of Malaysia,” he said.

Prior to the start of the by-election campaign perior, PKR and SAPP, both opposition parties in Sabah, reached a stalemate in their negotiation over which party should field a candidate and fight BN for the seat.

SAPP had insisted to field one of its own, party president and former chief minister Datuk Yong Teck Lee, and had even rejected PKR's offer for it to join PR.

PKR had also offered to back Yong in his bid for the seat and help SAPP in its campaigning but the seasoned politician refused to accept the offer.

During his campaign, Yong had also told constituents that joining PR was not on his party's agenda for now.

Khalid declared that PR had proven in the past nearly three years that it was the only viable alternative to replace BN in the Federal government.

This, he explained, was based on the pact's performance in helming states like Penang and Selangor.

“We have shown that we are formidable team that can govern the states. In Selangor and in Penang, PR has shown that we have improved the utilisation of state resources, unlike what the BN had done in the past over 50 years,” he said.

He added that now was the best time for Sabah folk to send a message to the BN government like how Sibu voters in Sarawak had done during the by-election there earlier this year.

DAP had wrested the seat from BN in a surprising turn of events during the Sibu by-election.

“We have proven ourselves to saf, that not only are we able to harness our resources well, we are also concerned about the people's welfare,” he said.

SAPP had earlier declared that it wanted to contest 40 seats in the next general election and was aiming to rule the state of Sabah.

Yong, in his campaign, has been using his Sabah-for-Sabahan and autonomy for Sabah slogans to fish for votes, playing on the local sentiment to reject West Malaysian politics.

Many have described the three-way battle for Batu Sapi as likely to be detrimental to both PKR and SAPP as their participation in the race would likely split the opposition vote.

Yong and Ansari and facing Barisan Nasional's Datin Linda Tsen Thau Lin, who is the widow of the seat's late MP Datuk Edmund Chong Ket Wah.

Polling day has been set for November 4. - Malaysian Insider

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