Sunday, April 04, 2010


Sabah Opposition chief Datuk Dr Jeffrey Kitingan claims that former Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad confided in him that he regrets in bringing Umno to Sabah.

Datuk Dr Jeffrey told this fact when he spoke to reporters from Malaysiakini while attending the Kota Kinabalu PKR division annual general meeting recently.

Datuk Dr Jeffrey claimed that Tun Dr Mahathir made this confession after his release from Internal Security Act (ISA) detention sometime in 1994, just after his elder brother, Chief Minister Datuk Joseph Pairin Kitingan called for a snap State elections. 

Datuk Dr Jeffrey claimed that Tun Dr Mahathir's purported regret was based on his observation that “Sabah Umno leaders cared only for themselves and not the party (Umno) or the people of Sabah”.

When Datuk Dr Jeffrey suggested that Umno pull out of Sabah, Tun Dr Mahathir told him that this was not possible on account of pride (maruah). But Datuk Dr Jeffrey told that Tun Dr Mahathir could swallow his pride when he readmitted PBS into BN even after he had expressed that readmission of PBS into BN had been closed and that the “keys” had been “thrown away”.

Datuk Dr Jeffrey further claimed that the main intention behind Umno's entry into Sabah was to further erode the autonomy of the State in favour of Peninsula Malaysia “and to make up for the forecast loss of Parliament seats in Peninsular Malaysia.

In response, Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Yahya Hussin, who is also Sabah Umno liason secretary, reported that it was impossible for Tun Dr Mahathir to regret bringing Umno to Sabah since Tun Dr Mahathir himself was the architect of the move to Sabah. 

In reply, Datuk Dr Jeffrey claimed that Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Yahya Hussin was not present when Tun Dr Mahathir made this claim. 

Datuk Dr Jeffrey Kitingan denies that he is making up these comments that purportedly disparaged Sabah Umno. 

Datuk Dr Jeffrey stated that the people of Sabah should dissociate themselves from Umno and send it “back to Peninsular Malaysia,” since Tun Dr Mahathir and his successors have not been willing to voluntarily pull Umno out of Sabah and the continued Umno's presence in Sabah further compromises its security and autonomy as pledged under the 1963 Malaysia Agreement.

No comments: