Tuesday, June 3, 2008


Shafie: Projects in Sabah should be more people-centered


Unity, Culture, Arts and Heritage Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal wants development projects to be carried out in Sabah to be more people- centered. He said the implementation of such projects should benefit the people, especially those from rural areas. Mohd Shafie said it was very generous of Prime Minister Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi to announce that more development projects would be implemented in Sabah. This, he said, was the appreciation of the Barisan Nasional (BN) Government for the support given by the Sabah people to BN in the last general election. “I hope the proposed development projects will help develop the rural areas in Sabah,” he told reporters after opening the 6th Global Indian Shopping Festival (GISF) 2008 organised by Agenda Suria Communications Sdn Bhd at MidValley Exhibition Hall here yesterday. The nine-day event beginning May 30, is a one-stop exhibition showcasing India’s ethnic handicraft, textiles and jewellery, among others. On Saturday, Abdullah, who pledged RM1 billion for rural development projects for Sabah, said that more development projects would be implemented in the State in lieu of the people’s support which enabled the BN to secure a massive victory in the State in the March 8 polls. He had said that besides development in the fields of science and technology, the Government would continue to develop the tourism industry, large-scale agriculture based on modern technology, as well as the development of the existing diverse cultures and arts. Mohd Shafie also said that during his tenure as Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister, he had requested the Federal Government to look into ways in reducing transportation costs from Sabah to Peninsular Malaysia. “I had also requested for a price coordination in rice and other essential items to reduce the burden on the consumers, as well,” he said. Commenting on the GISF, Mohd Shafie said he would discuss with Tourism Minister Datuk Seri Azalina Othman Said soon to find ways to scale up the festival to be a national event. - Bernama