PETALING JAYA: Labuan MP Suhaili Abdul Rahman has rejected calls to vacate his seat after declaring his support for Prime Minister Anwar Ibrahim.
Suhaili said the people of Labuan gave him the mandate to represent them at the last general election (GE15).
“I contested the seat on a Perikatan Nasional (PN) ticket. But it must be remembered that it was not the PN leadership that chose me but the people of Labuan,” he told FMT.
He also described calls to vacate his seat as “unreasonable”, saying that he had not “committed any crime” by supporting the current administration.
“I back the government because I need allocations. Is it a crime to seek these allocations to help the people in Labuan?”
Earlier today, Bersatu information chief Razali Idris challenged the four Bersatu MPs backing Anwar to quit and stand as independents in by-elections to test the people’s support for them.
The senator said the four had betrayed their voters and Bersatu grassroots with their move.
Suhaili is one of four PN MPs who have pledged their support for Anwar in a bid to secure allocations for their constituencies.
Kuala Kangsar MP Iskandar Dzulkarnain Abdul Khalid was the first to do so on Oct 12, followed by Suhaili on Oct 30. Despite the disciplinary action taken against them, another two MPs joined them in the past week – Zahari Kechik (Jeli) and Azizi Abu Naim (Gua Musang).
As a result of his action, Suhaili was suspended for six years by Bersatu’s disciplinary board, which ruled that he had violated the party’s constitution. Iskandar received a four-year suspension.
Suhaili is a three-term Labuan MP having first won the parliamentary seat in the 1999 general election on a Barisan Nasional (BN) ticket, and retaining it in the following general election in 2004.
He left Umno for Bersatu in 2018 after the fall of the BN government.