KOTA KINABALU, Jan 19 — Accepting his party’s defeat in the recent Kimanis by-election, Sabah chief minister Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal says he will continue to develop the constituency despite losing to Umno and Barisan Nasional.
Shafie, who is Parti Warisan Sabah president, said that he accepted and respected the people’s decision and would continue to work for the state.
“Rest assured, even though we have lost in Kimanis, I will continue to help the people in Kimanis. Just because we lost does not mean we leave them behind. They are still our people, whether we win or lose,” said Shafie.
“We are still the government and they need our help,” he said.
He said this during his speech at a Christmas and New Year open house hosted by state Rural Development Minister Datuk Ewon Benedick in Kota Belud.
He said it was not fair to penalise the people by withholding progress just because they lost the polls.
“We should accept and respect the decision made by the people. As the government, we cannot refute the people’s wishes. This is a democratic process where we ask for votes, not through force. If they don’t want us, it’s ok,” he said.
Shafie asked supporters not to worry as it was natural to go through different phases.
“Losing, failing and rising, I’ve gone through this in my life. This is a battle, it is not the war,” he said.
Shafie also thanked the people who voted for Warisan.
In yesterday’s polls, Umno’s Datuk Mohamad Alamin polled 12,706 votes against Warisan candidate’s Datuk Karim Bujang’s 10,677 votes to win the seat with a 2,029-vote majority.
Speaking to reporters Shafie said that they would conduct a post mortem on the reasons of the defeat but said early indications was that there were various factors identified, including candidate and money politics, which they would look into.
On the Sabah Temporary Pass (PSS), which was the crux of the opposition campaign, Shafie said they would also look into it and discuss the matter with the Home Ministry.