Pairin supports Speaker’s suggestion on semi-autonomy

(The Star) – Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan supports the suggestion by Sabah Legislative Assembly Speaker Datuk Seri Salleh Tun Said for the state to be given semi-autonomy.

The deputy chief minister, who is also Parti Bersatu Sabah president, said the move would facilitate state level decisions and enhance the efficiency of the government’s delivery system.

“I think there’s a lot of room for the Federal Government to consider. We can talk in terms of delegation of power.

“After all, if decisions can be done quickly, properly, within the level of state and departments here, a lot of things can be achieved faster and efficiently,” he told reporters.

He said this after attending a premier assembly involving state and Federal civil servants here on Tuesday.

Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Musa Aman delivered a keynote address at the function.

According to Pairin, one example of power delegation is the authority that could be given to the state Education director to approve department projects that cost RM5mil and below.

On Sunday, Salleh, who is Sabah Umno deputy liaison chairman and a former chief minister, suggested in his blog that the Federal Government should consider giving semi-autonomy to Sabah and Sarawak.

He said the present system was not working well, while the Barisan Nasional needed to prove to the people in Sabah and Sarawak that the Federal Government had honoured the terms agreed to in the formation of Malaysia.