A public opinion poll has found that the setting up of the royal commission of inquiry (RCI) to look into the illegal immigrant issue in Sabah has received overwhelming support in the state, with nine out of 10 Sabahans agreeing with the initiative.
only half of the respondents believe that the RCI will be able to
address the problem of illegal immigrants, which is the most important
issue in Sabah requiring immediate attention from the government.
survey was carried out by the Merdeka Centre for Opinion Research from
Sept 6 to 17, to gauge voters’ perceptions of current developments in
It also found that Sabah voters have mixed views as to the
motive behind the establishment of the commission, with 46 percent
deeming it “a genuine attempt to address the illegal immigrant problem”,
and 36 percent agreeing that it is a “political move to reduce the
anger of Sabahans before the election”.
doubts about the RCI were stronger among Chinese voters, urban voters,
those with Internet access and with household income higher than
Slightly more than half of the respondents (53 percent)
selected illegal immigrants as the most important issue to be addressed
by the state government, followed by concerns about the cost of living
(38 percent), corruption (21 percent), jobs (13 percent) and poverty
alleviation (10 percent).
Compared to the last survey in November
2009, the issue of illegal immigrants has been overtaken by the issue
of poor infrastructure to become the most important topic.
Main areas of concern
to the survey, issues that the Sabah voters wished to see discussed in
the upcoming general election are those involving illegal immigrants,
followed by welfare and impact of inflation on the cost of living.
also picked out unfavourable economic conditions, mediocre
infrastructure and quality of national leadership as among their main
A total of 829 registered voters, comprising 51 percent
Muslim bumiputeras, 29 percent non-Muslim bumiputeras and 20 percent
Chinese respondents, which was reflective of the electoral profile of
Sabah, were interviewed by telephone.
Respondents were selected on the basis of random stratified sampling along age group, ethnicity, gender and state constituency.
The poll was jointly-funded by Merdeka Centre and a regional consultancy firm.
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