KOTA KINABALU, Sept 22 ― Parti Warisan Sabah president Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal has today apologised to members of the security forces and their family for the remarks of a party candidate who allegedly insulted them in a speech on the campaign trail.
He said in a statement that the Segama candidate, Datuk Mohamaddin Ketapi, had no intention of insulting the struggle of soldiers and security personnel who sacrificed their lives to defend the people and the country.
“As a former Deputy Defence Minister, I fully understand the hardship that security personnel have to go through while guarding the country’s borders, especially in the remote areas.
“Every personnel deployed at the borders are not only ready to sacrifice their lives for the sake of the safety of every single Malaysians, but they also have to stay away from family members during their tenure.
“While facing the Covid-19 pandemic, I, as chief minister, also understood and appreciated their role as frontliners against the invisible but very dangerous enemy,” he said.
Shafie also pointed out that the state government had allocated RM10 million to all frontliners including RM1 million for the Royal Malaysia Police (PDRM) and RM1 million to personnel at Lok Kawi Camp.
The state contribution, he said, was never done in other states in Malaysia.
“The amount is not much compared to the risk and sacrifice of the heroes of this country. But that proves the commitment of the Sabah state government, although the security agencies are under federal jurisdiction,” said Shafie.
Yesterday, Mohamaddin said he did not insult the security forces in the Tanduo incident when speaking in Kampung Wawasan during the Sabah state election campaign.
Mohamaddin said what he wanted to raise at the campaign talk was the failure of the then Barisan Nasional (BN) government to strengthen its defence assets at the country’s borders which led to the incursion by armed militants in Kampung Tanduo.
“I wish to clarify that my statement during campaigning has been misunderstood and twisted by irresponsible people who did not understand what I said, because I never belittled, what more insulted our security forces.
“In this matter there is no need to apologise if no one was insulted. I do not admit committing any wrong but for the sake of preventing this issue from dragging on, I wish to apologise if the video which was circulated with bad intention has hurt the feelings of our security forces,” he said in a Bernama report.
A recording of one minute and nine seconds duration on the former tourism, arts and culture minister’s speech at the campaign on Sunday had gone viral on social media.
Mohamaddin, who is the MP for Lahad Datu, said the video should be watched in full and not judged based on just one portion. ― Borneo Post