Sabah PPBM denies 20,000 members have left party

Sabah PPBM Armada chief Mohd Isquzawan Israq Arsit says certain individuals were like ‘toyol’ who suddenly appear to make baseless allegations against the party.

KOTA KINABALU: A Sabah PPBM youth leader has denied claims that some 20,000 members had left the state chapter recently.

Sabah PPBM Armada chief Mohd Isquzawan Israq Arsit dismissed the claims by a group which claimed to be the “early drivers” of PPBM, supposedly instrumental in the party’s expansion to the state.

He said the party’s headquarters has never recognised the group and had never given its blessing for its movement or activities.

“More surprising is that the group concerned claimed they were based in Pulai, Johor Bahru, and that they had successfully registered 18,000 members in Kudat (in north Sabah).

“Sabah PPBM leaders do not know this group and the individuals concerned.

“They are like ‘toyol’ which suddenly appear and make baseless allegations.

“I am confident they do this at the instruction of certain people with the intention of smearing the good name of PPBM in Sabah,” he said in a statement today.

Isquzawan was commenting on a report in a local daily and an online news portal about a group of individuals, led by a certain Thomas Mojuga Tukang, who claimed to be among the main people behind the setting up of Sabah PPBM.

Thomas had declared he had quit the party, bringing with him 20,000 other members.

He was also reported to be bringing together 260 other leaders, including division leaders, Armada leaders and Srikandi, to leave PPBM.

“As far as I know, no division pro tem chiefs, or Armada and Srikandi pro tem chiefs in Sabah, have quit the party as alleged by Thomas,” Isquzawan said.

“This is clearly a lie intentionally created by the group with bad intentions against the Sabah PPBM’s leadership.”

He added that the group’s allegations that they were sidelined do not arise because the group had never been appointed or given the approval to move on the PPBM platform by the party’s headquarters.

The state chapter has received many reports on individuals claiming and impersonating Sabah PPBM leaders, he said.

“We do not know what their intentions are. When their lie is exposed, they come up with various excuses to save themselves from shame, until there are those who ‘quit’ PPBM,” Isquzawan said.

“There are no such things as earliest party activators because PPBM only decided to expand to Sabah in February 2019 and was officially launched by Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad, who is the PPBM chairman, on April 6.”

If there were “earliest party drivers”, he said these would be those who were officially appointed by the party’s leadership as pro tem chiefs, which included elected representatives and independent leaders formerly from Umno.

This is because they have been given the power and responsibility to set up party divisions and branches in Sabah, he added.

Isquzawan believed the lies stemmed from envious people “who are jealous because of the positive developments and good acceptance among the people of PPBM in Sabah”.

“Additionally, PPBM is led by fully committed leaders of calibre,” he added.