KOTA KINABALU, Nov 5 — Datuk Seri Ronald Kiandee is expected to defend his Beluran parliamentary seat in the 15th general election (GE15) against the state Gabungan Rakyat Sabah (GRS) and Barisan Nasional (BN), which made a pact to field an Umno candidate there.
Kiandee, who is now Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) vice-president, is expected to file his nominations later this morning, breaking ranks to contest under the rival Perikatan Nasional (coalition) logo.
In Sabah, Bersatu is a lead component of the GRS coalition and members of the coalition contesting this GE15 are using the GRS logo.
But GRS and Sabah BN have been working together as the state government since the 2020 state election.
The two coalitions have formed an electoral pact for GE15, which sees them sharing the 25 parliamentary seats in Sabah, with GRS to contest in 13 seats and the BN in 12.
The Beluran parliamentary seat was the most contentious seat during negotiations between the two coalitions, which ultimately went to Umno to contest.
Umno is fielding former Sandakan Municipal Council president Benedict Asmat.
Kiandee, a former federal minister, has held the seat since 1999 under Umno. The five-term MP won the seat in 2018 on an Umno ticket but left the party en masse in December 2018 to join Bersatu.
Disappointed to have been dropped, Kiandee is rumoured to have seeked the letter of appointment from PN chairman Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin to defend his seat.