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Monday, August 30, 2021

Ex-Sabah CM Sakaran Dandai dies at 91, was admitted with suspected Covid-19

 


Former Sabah governor Sakaran Dandai died at the Gleneagles Hospital in Kota Kinabalu early today at the age of 91. 

His grandson, Ahmad Marzuki Nasir, said Sakaran breathed his last at 5.30am.

“Together we pray for Allah to bless his soul and place him among the righteous and pious. Al-Fatihah,” he said in a brief statement.

Sakaran was admitted to the hospital for suspected Covid-19 infection on Aug 18 before being warded in the intensive care unit over the past five days.

Sakaran, from Semporna, Sabah, was the state's eighth chief minister in 1994 before being appointed as the governor from Jan 1, 1995, to Dec 31, 2002.

He was one of the few distinguished Malaysians to be granted the title 'Tun'.

His passing follows the deaths of former deputy minister Lakim Ujin and former chief secretary to the government Ahmad Sarji Abdul Hamid over the weekend. 

Both men had also been admitted to the hospital with Covid-19.

The late Sakaran was on April 15, 1930, in Kampung Air, Semporna and received his early education at Sekolah Melayu Semporna and then to the Government Vernacular School, also in Semporna.

He started work in the public service as a Native Clerk at the Semporna District Office on Aug 31, 1948.

In 1960, he was appointed Ketua Anak Negeri, the youngest person to be appointed to the post then, and focused on education, as only 35 percent of children at school-going age was sent to school at that time.

He was also responsible for the opening of Sekolah Rakyat in Sabah, prior to his retirement from the public service in 1967.

He was appointed the first chancellor of Universiti Malaysia Sabah (UMS) and in 2004, was conferred an honorary doctorate in management by the university.

The late Sakaran played an important role for the state and country in improving the socioeconomic status and education of the people, and also in promoting Islamic literature.

In 2008, he was named the Sabah Tokoh Maal Hijrah and named the recipient of the national-level Tokoh Maal Hijrah in 2017

He was also involved in non-governmental organisations as the president of Pertubuhan Islam Seluruh Sabah and founded Yayasan SABDI.

In politics, Sakaran was deputy president of United Sabah National Organisation (USNO) in 1986 and Sabah Umno liaison committee chair in 1993.

Sakaran had also served in the state cabinet serving various portfolios, including Culture, Arts and Tourism; Agriculture and Fisheries and Land and Cooperative Development.

- Bernama 

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