Shafie says will ask Mohamaddin to explain Ops Daulat remarks
SABAH POLLS | Warisan's Lahad Datu MP Mohamaddin Ketapi will be summoned by party president Shafie Apdal to explain remarks that allegedly insulted security personnel who fought against intruders during the 2013 Lahad Datu standoff in Sabah.
When met by reporters while on the campaign trail for Warisan Plus candidates in Sandakan, Shafie (above) also noted that Mohamaddin had apologised for his allegedly offensive remarks.
"He has apologised. And I will call him (to explain) what were his reasons," said the incumbent Sabah chief minister when asked if any action would be taken against Mohamaddin.
"We will continue our fight. He has apologised," said Shafie before leaving the Sim-Sim futsal court in N56 Tanjong Papat.
Shafie was campaigning for DAP's N55 Elopura candidate Calvin Chong and N56 candidate Frankie Poon, alongside DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng who was also in Sandakan today.
Earlier today, Mohamaddin in a statement said that a speech of his, during the Sabah election campaign trail, had been misinterpreted. He stressed that he did not have any intention to hurt members of security forces.
He also said he was actually training his guns on BN, which was the government at the time, for their alleged failure in defending the country's borders.
He further insisted a short video clip of his remarks which went viral early Monday had been taken out of context.
In the video, Mohamaddin told voters that the 2013 incident was only a 'sandiwara' (staged act) by the federal government then.
Following his remarks, the former tourism minister had since been bombarded with criticisms for allegedly insulting the members of security forces who fought and died in the battle.
For the record, the police aided by the armed forces had launched Operation Daulat in March 2013 in response to an intrusion by a group that called themselves the Royal Sulu Army. The group wanted to claim Sabah as their territory.
The incident ended a month later, in early April. By then, 10 members of security forces had been killed. The intruders suffered 65 casualties while over 100 others were arrested.
Warisan suffers self-inflicted blow at critical moment in Sabah campaign
Warisan, the party leading the incumbent coalition in the Sabah polls, suffered a self-inflicted injury at a critical period in its re-election campaign as early voting for police and military personnel begins today.
The injury was inflicted by the party's supreme council member Mohammadin Ketapi, who also had a colourful tenure as tourism, culture and arts minister in the previous Pakatan Harapan government.
Mohammadin had claimed gays didn't exist in Malaysia, said he was “too poor” to declare his assets when the then Harapan government made asset declaration compulsory and shot down a fellow coalition MP who raised concerns about child sexual abuse.
In his latest controversy, Mohammadin, who is the Silam MP and also being fielded to contest the Segama state seat, claimed the armed incursion on Lahad Datu, Sabah by militants from the southern Philippines in 2013 was a "show" (sandiwara).
Two police commandos were killed during initial skirmishes in Lahad Datu and one army man was killed by sniper fire while sweeping for enemy combatants.
Another six police officers were killed in a separate ambush in Kunak, Semporna, around 150km away from the main conflict site. Some of their bodies were reportedly mutilated.
In that incident, militants had infiltrated Kunak and the police were lured into the village, believing they were dealing with regular criminals. Another military personnel also died in a car accident.
The conflict took place between February and March, two months before the 13th general election was called on May 5, 2013.
Mohammadin had insinuated that the incursion was related to the then BN-led government to shore up its support in the general election.
His controversial comment while campaigning in the Sabah election was recorded on video and went viral on social media yesterday, the eve of early voting for security forces personnel in the Sabah election.