KOTA KINABALU: Sabah PPBM has denied practising “selective accommodation” as alleged by a former assemblyman who recently left the party to rejoin Umno.
Sabah PPBM secretary Ronald Kiandee said party members should remember that entry into PPBM is voluntary and that no one is guaranteed a post.
He was responding to claims by former Pantai Manis assemblyman Rahim Ismail, who was also the Papar Umno division chief.
Rahim was one of 23 Sabah Umno leaders who quit Umno in December last year. He joined PPBM in April but left the party to rejoin Umno on Monday.
Kiandee, who is Beluran MP, said Rahim’s allegation about selective accommodation was unfair as the party could not fulfil the wishes of all individuals wanting to be pro tem division chiefs.
“Various factors must be considered to ensure that the party is seen as a relevant political platform in Sabah. Among them is the people’s acceptance during the past election which was seen in the election results,” he said.
Rahim represented his seat for more than two decades but lost it in last year’s state election.
It was initially believed that he would be the automatic choice for Papar PPBM division pro tem chief. However, the post went to Kawang assemblyman Ghulamhaidar Khan Bahadar instead.
Kiandee said Ghulamhaidar was appointed as there were groups in the Papar constituency which preferred him to Rahim.
“Leaders with a big soul will always be ready to give space to the new leadership line-up,” he added.
“The time will come for us to be open to support other leaders, particularly those leaders proven to have the people’s trust through elections. As a leader, we must not only be ready to lead, but also be ready to be led.”
Kiandee also denied the allegation by acting Tuaran Umno chief Rahman Dahlan that some Umno members had been registered as PPBM members without their consent.
Kiandee said PPBM has a mechanism to ensure that members register voluntarily, giving priority to quality rather than quantity.
“Rather than making baseless accusations, it would be better if Rahman focused on mending Umno such as by ensuring that the ongoing delegate meetings statewide are proceeding in accordance with Umno’s constitution and regulations.
“As I remember it, their party rules state that the meetings need to be attended by delegates who have been elected through a meeting held at the branch level. I am confident Rahman is aware of what is really happening,” he said.