Saturday, September 04, 2004

Money Politics & Sabah Politicians

Now it is confirmed corruption and money politics among Sabah politicians especially those from UMNO is rampant. Silam Umno division deputy head Samsu Baharun Abdul Rahman who is also the Entrepreneurial and Co-operative Development Ministry parliamentary secretary has been suspended for three years by the party for money politics.

The Umno disciplinary board found the Silam MP – who was elected Silam division deputy chief recently – guilty of money politics. “He had given out RM50,” board chairman Tan Sri Tengku Ahmad Rithauddeen Tengku Ismail told a press conference yesterday.

Silam division chief Mohd Yusof Apdal, younger brother of Domestic Trade and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Shafie Apdal, has also been suspended. The board found that Yusof had held gatherings with party members in a hotel in Lahad Datu and given out RM200 while contesting the division head's post. He was also found to be acting for somebody.

Two others from the Silam division in Sabah have been suspended – committee members Hakim Ghulam Hassan and Datu Ibrahim Datu Abd Karim.

This is the second time the division has been embroiled in such problems. In the last Umno elections in 2000, then division chief Yusof Jamlee, Samsu’s brother-in-law, was also suspended by the party. At that time, Samsu had assumed the acting division chief’s post.

It is not a surprise that Samsu was slapped with the suspension. He has been taking much more than that. Besides money he is also a womanizer.

It was reported that during a trade mission to East Kalimantan, Indonesia last year, Samsu was given the honour to lead. With him were his wife and his assistants. However Samsu was always missing from the group. He excused himself for not feeling well. Inside sources revealed that he was having a good time with Indonesian prostitutes arranged by his assistants. Girls were delivered to his assistant’s room. His wife was kept busy by other assistants. His sexual fantasies also caused a few functions to be delayed.

Meanwhile, Yusof Apdal is the proxy for his brother, Shafie, in any business deals. It is not a secret that Shafie has lobbied for projects and passed them to UF Engineering of the Leeka Group. Due to his position, Shafie puts his brother as his representatives. Yusof has direct interests in the Leeka Group.

In fact it is also an open secret that Shafie receives his political funds for both General Election and Party campaigns from Leeka. These are kick backs from the projects which he has lobbied for using his influence as a minister/deputy minister.

RM200 paid by Yusof for a vote is only a small portion offered which were reported. The bigger sums have been given to bigger fish.

Are we going after the bigger fish?

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