Kitingan: STAR not represented in Cabinet due to misunderstanding

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Datuk Seri Panglima Jeffrey Kitingan, president of Sabah STAR, stated that the absence of a party representative in the federal cabinet was due to miscommunication.

According to him, it was a simple misunderstanding. He stated that STAR is a division of Perikatan Nasional (PN).

“Because we are members of the Perikatan Nasional (PN), they assumed the Prime Minister (Datuk Seri Ismail Sabri Yaakob) would directly contact me,” he explained.

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“So, we hoped, and they hoped as well. Therefore, that was the case,” he added during the press conference at the Penampang Native Court.

Nonetheless, Jeffrey implied that the party would feature something else.

“Ada itu,” he stated, which means that “there is something.”

STAR is not represented in the new federal Cabinet, as its secretary-general Guan Dee Koh Hoi was dropped from Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin’s cabinet as deputy tourism, arts, and culture minister.

Guan Dee, who is 68 years old, succeeded Jeffrey as Sabah’s deputy chief minister following Gabungan Rakyat Sabah’s election victory last September.

Jeffrey had previously attended a mediation in connection with lawyer Marcel Jude Joseph’s case involving the Unduk Ngadau beauty pageant.

Marcel attended the event, which also included Penampang district chief Charles Masuil, Sabah Native Affairs Council president Benedict Topin, and district leaders.

According to Jeffrey, the purpose of the meeting at the Penampang Native Court was to document and endorse the decision reached during the Native Court mediation, in which both parties agreed to accept the decision reached to settle the matter.

“Marcel has agreed to accept the penalties imposed on seven buffaloes, which correspond to the KDMR’s seven groups (Kadazan, Dusun, Murut and Rungus). Both parties also agree that Marcel Jude will not pursue legal action against any associations, and that the KDCA and associations will refrain from pursuing Marcel Jude in the future,” Jeffrey stated.

“We hope for the recording of the peace agreement,” he added.

Additionally, Jeffrey stated that once the matter has been endorsed by the Native Court, no further action can be taken in that court. He said that the matter has been resolved.

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