Formation of Bersatu in Sabah not to take over state government – Dr Mahathir

PENAMPANG, April 6 (Bernama) — The formation of Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) in Sabah is not aimed at taking over the state government led by Parti Warisan Sabah (Warisan).

Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who is also Bersatu chairman, said on the other hand the decision for Bersatu to be formed in Sabah would give full support to Warisan although the party was not an affiliate of Pakatan Harapan.

“We assist the Sabah government although Bersatu has a significant support (in Sabah) and it is not our intention to topple the Sabah state government.

“Our intention is for Bersatu in Sabah to be bigger and assist the central government and the state to have a strong and stable government,” he told a media conference after the Launching Ceremony for Bersatu Sabah, here today.

Thus, Dr Mahathir said that Bersatu too had no intention of seeking any post in the Sabah State Cabinet.

The Prime Minister said although Warisan was not an affiliate of PH, they have been given posts in the federal cabinet with the appointment of three representatives holding ministerial posts and two deputy ministers.

“We work closely and there is no problem. Upon arriving at the Kota Kinabalu International Airport just now, I had met with Mohd Shafie Apdal (Warisan President),” he said.

Earlier in his speech at the event, Dr Mahathir said the decision to set up Bersatu in Sabah was made after receiving requests from leaders in Sabah who had left their respective parties including UMNO and becoming Independent elected representatives.

He said that was why when Bersatu was expanded to Sabah, it received support from the people in the state who wanted to see Sabah develop.

“It is very clear today that at the launching of Bersatu many Sabahans expressed their intention to join the party as they wished to participate in politics in determining their fate,” he said.

The Prime Minister also reminded Bersatu members in Sabah that their participation in Bersatu was not to enrich themselves but to enrich the nation for the benefit of the people.

“There is no place in Bersatu to enrich the individuals and if there are any, they would be expelled. Only those who are sincere to contribute in developing the nation and champion the cause of the people would be retained,” he said.

Dr Mahathir stressed that this was in line with the government’s commitment to eliminate corruption at all levels to ensure that the nation achieved rapid development.

On March 15 recently, eight former Sabah UMNO leaders including six elected representatives joined Bersatu and received their membership cards from Dr Mahathir in Putrajaya.

The six independent elected representatives were the Member of Parliament for Kudat Datuk Abd Rahim Bakri, Datuk Azizah Mohd Dun (Beaufort), Datuk Zakaria Edris (Libaran), Datuk Seri Dr Ronald Kiandee (Beluran), Datuk Hajiji Noor (State Assemblyman for Sulaman and Datuk Masidi Manjun (Karanaan).

Apart from them others who joined Bersatu were two senators namely Datuk Abdul Ghani Mohamed Yassin and Datuk John Ambrose.

— BERNAMA

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