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Pandikar returning to politics
Published on: Wednesday, April 05, 2017

MATUNGGONG: Tan Sri Datuk Pandikar Amin Haji Mulia (pic) signalled that it is time for him to return to active politics after serving as Parliament Speaker for two successive terms. "After nine years as Speaker of Parliament, leading the Parliamentary Conference and giving orders, comments and orders to sit down to the wakil rakyats or Yang Berhormats (YB), one day I, in turn, will be there and be told to sit down like them," he quipped. However, he did not indicate whether he was eyeing a Parliament or State seat, or even both.

"After some time considering this (returning to active politics), today I am announcing my intention to do so," he said, during the Program Lawatan Mesra to the Kelulut Bee Farm in Kg Bodu and Kelulut Bee Farm in Kg Onduon, Matunggong, Kudat during the weekend.

Pandikar Amin, a lawyer, once led a party (Parti Bersih) in the early 1980s and was later involved in Parti Akar before a falling out with the party's leaders. He was made a Nominated Assemblyman during the PBS era where he became the State Assembly Speaker.

Following Umno's expansion to Sabah, he contested in Usukan and won. He was made a Minister in the Prime Minister's Department in the Mahathir administration and was offered the Parliament Speaker post following the 2008 election when the opposition made huge gains.

He once told Daily Express that he attributed his heart bypass surgery to having to deal with the enlarged opposition presence in Parliament. He wanted to quit after his first term but was persuaded by Prime Minister Datuk Seri najib to continue following the 2013 general election.

He is the first Parliament Speaker to introduce reforms such as Question Time for Ministers to explain policies and decisions to MPs. However, one of his decisions to forbid members of the press confronting politicians in the parliament lobby met with disapproval.

Meanwhile, Kg Bodu and Kg Onduon, located 56km from Kudat town, is only reachable after travelling through a muddy dirt road of 12km from the junction of Jalan Kudat, Kota Marudu and situated within the Matunggong and Kota Marudu parliamentary constituency.

Kelulut Honey bee farm which attracted Pandikar's attention is run by a villager here, George Clinton and his family.

Pandikar Amin, who is Kota Marudu Umno Division Chief, also enquired about the problems of the villagers, especially the road which is in dire need of repair.

"Although Kg Onduon is quite isolated residents and the village itself has its privileges," said Pandikar, who was thrilled when his presence was greeted with atraditional Rungus Mongigol/ sumandai dance.

The welcoming of guests event was enlivened with performances of arm wrestling and cobblestone weight lifting weighing 110kg by Mazri Sital (Badang Malaysia 2014) and Honesty (Orang Kuat Sabah 2013).

George Clinton, representing the villagers, expressed his gratitude to the government which he said always helped the people concerned and willing to provide the necessary facilities according to the needs of citizens, such as electricity that they enjoy now.

However, he expressed high hopes that the roads which are badly damaged in the village can be upgraded for the convenience of residents for their daily lives, including the marketing of agricultural products, animals, village products and so on. - Clarence G Dol


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