PBS: Pensiangan candidate announcement ‘unofficial’

PBS secretary-general Johnny Mositun said the party would back candidates selected by BN.

KOTA KINABALU: Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) has denied having anything to do with a recent statement by a deputy division chief in support of incumbent Sook assemblyman Ellron Alfred Angin as a candidate for the Pensiangan parliamentary seat.

Ronny Rusikan, the Sook division deputy chief in Keningau district, located in Sabah’s interior, had earlier said that both the Sook and Nabawan divisions had agreed to support PBRS president Joseph Kurup and his son, Arthur, who is also PBRS deputy president, for the Sook and Nabawan state seats respectively.

“After a check with the party’s division chief there, Suman Yasambun, we found that the statement was made by Sook PBS division deputy chief Ronny Rusikan in his own capacity, and does not represent PBS’ official view,” said PBS secretary-general Johnny Mositun in a statement today.

“The Sook PBS division also agreed to support any Barisan Nasional candidate fielded in the coming 14th general election for the Pensiangan parliamentary seat and two state seats — Sook and Nabawan.

“This is done in the spirit of BN. They (division members) pledged to work hard and ensure victories for BN and its candidates,” Mositun said.

Kurup successfully defended the Pensiangan seat after garnering 9,467 votes in a four-cornered contest in the last election.

He obtained 1,744 votes more than his closest competitor, PKR’s Richard Sakian Gunting.

Angin emerged triumphant in Sook in GE13 by getting 7,223 votes, with a majority of 4,395 votes over Kustin Ladi of STAR. He beat three other candidates from PKR, SAPP and an independent.

In Nabawan, BN’s incumbent Bobbey Suan narrowly defeated PKR’s Raymond Ahuar by 342 votes in the last polls.

BN’s candidacy in certain constituencies in Sabah has become a hotly-debated issue recently.

Umno vice-president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi had proposed during a recent visit to Kota Marudu that PBS should lend the Matunggong seat to Umno to increase BN’s chances of winning with a bigger majority.

The suggestion received strong reactions, especially from PBS. However, Chief Minister Musa Aman later gave an assurance that the proposal to let an Umno candidate stand in Matunggong would not be carried out.

Click here to get live updates throughout the GE14 season.

No Umno candidate in Matunggong, Musa assures

PKR to contest at least 15 seats in Sabah

Sabah election void if 13 new seats not gazetted, says Warisan