KOTA KINABALU: Sabah PPBM expects to have up to 300,000 members by next year.
Speaking to reporters at a Hari Raya open house organised by Usukan assemblyman Japlin Akim here today, Sabah PPBM chief Hajiji Noor said the party was already processing about 127,000 membership applications.
Additionally, about 100,000 application forms had been taken by other interested individuals since the party’s official launch on April 6, he said.
“Judging by this overwhelming response, we expect that by the end of this year or by next year, once we have settled down, the membership will increase to 300,000 members.”
Sabah Umno, in its heyday, had 500,000 members. Warisan recently announced it aimed to have 200,000 members.
Commenting on a recent issue where certain people had allegedly appointed themselves as the party’s leaders, Hajiji said he had met them and they had agreed to support the state leadership.
He said these individuals would be “heavily involved” in the party’s committees at the divisional level, depending on where they resided.
“PPBM is for all Bumiputeras and Pribumis who are interested and can accept the party’s struggle. So, we will open the door as wide as possible to all. Don’t worry, we will not stop anyone from joining the party.”
He said the party was organising itself at the divisional level and each division had already created its own women’s and youth wings.
Once everything is in order, he expected the central leadership to allow Sabah PPBM to hold its delegates meeting and to send delegates to the PPBM general assembly later this year.
“But it depends on the instruction from the central leadership. If they want us to do this, then we will carry it out,” he said.
In terms of autonomy for the Sabah PPBM, Hajiji, who is also the Sulaman assemblyman, said the issue would be discussed at an opportune time.
However, he does not think there will be any problem in getting autonomy because the party’s constitution has already spelled out what each party division can do.
“It is totally different from other parties. PPBM is an entity with its own power, including at the divisional and state levels,” he said.