A backbencher has urged for the government to expedite in the tabling of the National Harmony and Reconciliation Commission Act Bill in Parliament this year.
This was in line with the call by the Yang DiPertuan Agong who wanted stern action be taken against any those jeorpardising the nation’s unity and harmony.
The people of Sabah are worried with the political development in the peninsular whereby political issues are often fueled by religious and race sentiments.
This Act is important to ensure the issue of harmony receives specific attention rather than merely hitching a ride in other acts.
The people of Sabah is sensitive about harmony and perhaps it is why Umno Sabah’s people representative chose to leave the party and Umno Sabah declined to cooperate with Pas.
The Pakatan Harapan Government has created a lot of reforms in term of the Federal – Sabah’s relationship.
Notably was the constitutional amendment to Article 1(2) that is expected to be tabled during this session to restore the status of Sabah and Sarawak as equal partner in the Federation of Malaysia.
I also commend the Ministry of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs for taking steps to ensure 90 per cent or RM140 million of the transportation subsidy for seven essential goods are targetted for Sabah and Sarawak.
Similarly, the price of air tickets between main airports in Sabah, Sarawak and Kuala Lumpur International Airport (KLIA) during the festive seasons like the recent Chinese New Year’s celebration had been put under reasonable control.
Another reform brought by the PH Government was standardisation of road tax fees for registered commercial goods vehicles in Sabah and Sarawak using the kerb weight (BTM) criteria from April 1.
The Sabah Lorry Association chairman had commented that he had met with five or six previous transport ministers from the MCA but none of them were able to do such a reform.
VISA ON ARRIVAL (VOA)
I hope the Visa on Arrival (VOA) policy, which the Prime Minister had agreed to be implemented in Langkawi could also be done in the Kota Kinabalu International Airport (KKIA).
My constituency is a popular tourism destination, especially among tourists from Korea and China.
For example, there is 125 direct flights from China to KKIA. Last year Sabah recorded 3.879 million arrivals, the highest yet and bringing in tourism receipt of RM8.342 billion.
Sabah now banks on the tourism industry to generate income and spur economic growth, hence the implementation of VOA in KKIA would definitely boost the industry more.
ADDITIONAL ALLOCATION TO ADDRESS ROAD CONGESTION IN KK CITY
I thank the Government for approval of either upgrading or construction of new roads costing RM3 billion in my constituency.
However, additional allocation totalling RM1 billion was needed for several projects that would resolve the Kota Kinabalu City road congestion by year 2025.
Additional funding is needed for the projects in Jalan Kolam, Luyang, Jalan Rampayan, Kuala Menggatal, Jalan Donggongon- Tambunan, Penampang and Jalan Tuaran Bypas, Kuala Menggatal.