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My political opponents will call this book “classical self-glorification of an arrogant man”. I would call this first-ever book of mine “the classical wonder of the many good people whom I know and the many whom I did not know” where all, in their won ways, have shares their hearts and love with and for me over the past years.
This book, which I called “MY REWARDS”, shows in both text and pictures the beauty of people and the pride and joy of doing good and doing right. A selection of interesting newspaper clippings-both local and national-concerning my life as a public figure have been included for prosperity, which I strongly believe will provide this book with the extra flavour, in addition to the series of photographs depicting the political story of this likely to-be-forgotten politician! This material is from one of my numerous personal collection, which I shall always treasure as “my rewards”. They are priceless, and no amount of money can take them away from me.
To my dear friends, as well as to those good people who came into my life with their writings, letters and messages, I thank each and every on of them for their expressions of love and good wishes as well as for their concern for well-being, particularly over my most recent “abrupt” resignation from the Sabah State government. I have served the government and state for well over 26 years, the first as Assistant Minister to the Chief Minister 1982-1985, the second as a Federal Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department 1995-1999 and finally the last eight years as a member of the Sabah State Cabinet including two years as the 12th Chief Minister of Sabah (27 March 2001-27 March 2003).
I believe it will be more meaningful if I share with the people of Sabah (and even with our many foreign as well as fellow Malaysians over in Sarawak and Peninsular Malaysia) this personal collection of mine, with a view to telling a story-a story of pride and pleasure, a story of struggles and gratitude. In short, the short of my life in public office that excludes the other side of that story-the ungodly and the ungrateful which, honestly, are not worth recording anyway.
This book would not have been possible without the kind assistance of my former Permanent Secretary Datuk Monica Chia Mui Foong and Datuk C.L. Chan my publisher, who not only advise on the contents and structure of this book, but also took up the unenviable tasks of reading, assembling, screening and selecting the bundles of files and photographs.