By : LISA J. ARIFFIN
PETALING JAYA: Barisan Nasional MPs today dismissed a PKR allegation that the government may be using the Lahad Datu incident to divert the public’s attention from the royal inquiry into illegal immigration into Sabah.
Labis MP Chua Tee Yong said the statement that PKR Vice-President Tian Chua made yesterday had no basis in fact and likened it to other opposition claims that, according to him, have since been debunked.
He referred specifically to the allegation that Japan had compensated the families of those who died in the infamous Death Railway project and to the claim that the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) was losing money.
"The opposition always has a lot of claims and a lot of these claims have turned out to be unsubstantiated,” Chua told FMT.
“These are not just grassroots leaders, but the main leaders, announcing these claims without checking.”
He said the opposition would “do anything necessary to make themselves look good” and to evoke the public’s sympathy.
Hulu Selangor MP P Kamalanathan said it was irresponsible of Pakatan to politicise the Lahad Datu affair.
"We have an issue and the government is doing its best to resolve it,” he said. “People should not make statements irresponsibly.”
Nothing to do with politics
Kota Belud MP Abdul Rahman Dahlan said it was “very unbecoming” for Pakatan to politicise an incident involving national security.
"This has nothing to do with politics,” he said. “It is about a bunch of foreigners coming into the country and the government trying its best to deal with it while hoping no lives are lost.
Abdul Rahman said the opposition should instead cooperate with BN in looking for a peaceful resolution of the issue.
“This is serious and there is no room for politics. The opposition should join hands with the government and with our security forces.”
Last week, armed men claiming to be loyalists of the Sultan of Sulu landed in Lahad Datu and said they would stay put because Sabah was part of their ancestral home.
Malaysian security forces are still in negotiation with them.
PKR’s Chua, who is the MP for Batu, spoke yesterday at a press conference. He said he found it “irrational” to assert that the Sulu Sultan had sent armed men to intrude into Sabah just because of a historical claim.