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Sabah polls: BN willing to work with any party but prioritises cooperation with PH — Ahmad Zahid

Publish date: Tue, 21 May 2024, 09:35 PM

PUTRAJAYA (May 21): Barisan Nasional (BN) is ready to work with any party to face the next Sabah state election but the priority is to strengthen its cooperation with Pakatan Harapan (PH), said BN chairman Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi.

Ahmad Zahid, who is also Umno president, said it is hoped that the understanding between BN and PH can also bring positive results in Sabah.

“The important thing is that BN must strengthen its cooperation with PH. That is key, especially in the formation of the government in Putrajaya, and in Sabah, this political atmosphere may also be reflected,” he told the media after attending the 2023 Rural and Regional Development Ministry (KKDW) excellent service awards and appreciation ceremony here on Tuesday.

The deputy prime minister said BN is a dynamic party and is ready to cooperate with anyone that aligns with its political stance to form a government in Sabah.

“We used to be with the previous government but have been sidelined. However, this sidelining does not make Umno irrelevant in Sabah and the challenges have strengthened us. We are ready to cooperate with any strong party to form the government in Sabah in the future,” said Ahmad Zahid, who is rural and regional development minister.

Sabah Umno chairman Datuk Seri Bung Moktar Radin was reported to have said Sabah Umno was exploring a new political alignment as the political landscape made it difficult for parties to go it alone in the next state election.

In his speech, Ahmad Zahid urged KKDW staff to ensure that all stakeholders receive appropriate benefits through the allocations channelled by the government through the ministry.

He said KKDW has stakeholders across the country, comprising target groups in rural, suburban and urban areas that require attention in addressing various issues.

“For example, Mara [Majlis Amanah Rakyat] is an agency that not only focuses on rural communities but also nationwide, including urban and suburban areas,” he said.

Ahmad Zahid said the ministry was given RM7.44 billion this year and was hoping for a bigger allocation in the coming budget.

“The question is, based on performance reports, whether these stakeholder groups have truly benefited from the substantial budget channelled by the government through us and our agencies?” he said.

He said follow-up actions must be implemented to ensure that stakeholders can enjoy the benefits of the allocations provided.

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