ISSUE OF ILLEGALS: He objected to forming royal commission when he was deputy PM, says MCA president
(NST) - KOTA KINABALU: THE people of Sabah should recall opposition leader Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim's stance on the issue of illegal immigrants when he was deputy prime minister and how it has changed since.
MCA president Datuk Seri Dr Chua Soi Lek said Anwar had objected to the setting up of a Royal Commission of Inquiry when he was deputy prime minister.
"To be fair, the first political leader to campaign for the exercise was Parti Bersatu Sabah's Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan in 1994.
"Anwar rejected it then. But today, he is singing a different tune.
"Sabahans should be aware of this and not be conned by him," Dr Chua said after chairing the Sabah MCA annual delegates conference yesterday.
On Saturday, Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak announced the terms of reference and members of the RCI here, much to the delight of the Sabah people and its leaders.
The need for the initiative had been consistently raised by state component parties, and often used by the opposition to downplay government efforts and to gain people's support.
Voicing MCA's support for the RCI, Dr Chua said he believed the people would know how to evaluate and compare the performance of Najib and the non-performance of Pakatan Rakyat.
Chua also condemned DAP's political spin on his statement which was circulated on Facebook recently.
"They used my statement that 'you do not expect the people of Sarawak and Sabah to be able to compete with the people in Klang Valley'.
"This was from my speech at the BN (Barisan Nasional) national convention and it was actually made in the context of scholarships and education.
"What I really said was while MCA supports the awarding of scholarships based on meritocracy, we accept that there are socially and economically disadvantaged groups in rural Sabah and Sarawak where they do not have adequate educational facilities compared with KL," he said, adding that DAP had twisted his words to create hatred towards MCA leaders.