Umno’s new six secretariats will enable the Party’s leaders to establish closer rapport with the grassroots, Sabah Umno Youth Chief Datuk Japlin Akim said. “The secretariats can function as a platform for the grassroots to voice out their feelings,” he said, adding that Umno Youth can also use the secretariats to disseminate information about the Government’s policies and development programmes. Japlin said this when commenting on the five special secretariats and one permanent secretariat which the Party’s central leadership had set up namely, the “Sekretariat Permuafakatan”, “Sekretariat Peremajaan UMNO”, “Sekretariat Pembelaan Rakyat”, “Sek-retariat Pembinaan Negara Bangsa”, “Sekretariat Perhubungan Media”, and “Sekretariat Tetap”. Besides being -an avenue to get closer to the grassroots, the secretariats can also be used to resolve any problems brought- up by Umno Youth, he added. According to the Assistant Infrastructure Development Minister, the newly set up “Sekretariat Perhubungan Media” can help to address problems that are brought up via the Internet. “This is Umno’s efforts to ensure that the younger generation remains interested in the Party and also proved the Youth Movement’s commitment to see its members continue with the Party’s agenda,” he said. Japlin who also the Usukan Assemblyman, also welcomed the additional RM1 billion allocation announced by Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi for development - in the State and the abolishment of the Sabah Federal Development Department (JPPS). “The abolishment of JPPS has been long awaited by leaders in Sabah. Now all allocations can be channelled directly to the State Government thus making the delivery system more efficient,” he added.