Sabah Umno will not exclude allies in seat allocation, says Bung

Sabah Umno chief Bung Moktar Radin (seated, centre) and party leaders after their meeting in Kota Kinabalu today.

KOTA KINABALU: Sabah Umno will not exclude allies who were similarly against Warisan in the allocation of seats for the upcoming state election despite announcing it intends to defend all the seats it contested previously.

Sabah Umno chief Bung Mokhtar Radin said the party will discuss seat arrangements within Barisan Nasional (BN) and with its allies in the coming days.

“Sabah Umno has just concluded a meeting where we made a few decisions in the areas of seat allocation, identification of candidates and setting up the election machinery,” he said.

Speaking after chairing a meeting of the Sabah Umno liaison committee at the party headquarters here today, Bung said the upcoming election was extraordinary as all the contesting parties had their strengths and weaknesses.

“They each have their strengths and weaknesses but what is more important is that we must convince the voters out there, in the rural areas and among the youths, that we (Sabah Umno and its allies) are the potential party to form the new state government.

“We are living in the new norm, so people out there want promises that can be met, not like (the ones made by) Warisan and PH.”

Previously, Sabah PPBM had announced that it will be contesting in 45 state seats. Its chairman, Hajiji Noor, however said the party is prepared to cooperate with its allies and partners in Perikatan Nasional.

Seventy-three seats are up for grabs in the election which must be held before Sept 29 – an increase from 60 in the last polls.

Incumbent chief minister Shafie Apdal announced the dissolution of the state assembly after a meeting with the governor on Thursday. Earlier, former chief minister Musa Aman claimed he had enough support for a simple majority to form a new government.

Meanwhile, asked about Musa’s absence at the meeting today, Bung said the event had only involved Umno heads of divisions.