Quit and win your seats again under GRS, Sabah Bersatu dares four MPs who jumped ship
KOTA KINABALU, May 2 — The four Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia MPs who joined Gabungan Rakyat Sabah (GRS) should do the honourable thing and seek fresh mandates from their voters, said Abdul Kadir Abdullah Damsal.
The Sabah Bersatu secretary said his party’s application for judicial review of the Dewan Rakyat Speaker’s decision not to declare the seats vacant was not an attempt to deny “a Sabah wave”, but to uphold the rule of law in the country.
“We in Bersatu believe that the four parliamentarians (MPs) have violated the mandate given to them by the voters who voted for Bersatu under the banner of Perikatan Nasional (PN) in GE15. There are no two ways about it,” he said.
“The filing is to exert Bersatu’s legal rights and to restore the dignity of the party amongst not only its loyal supporters but amongst the people of Sabah.
“However, if the four MPS now claim to be members of GRS, then they should have the moral courage to resign and seek new mandates from the voters in their respective constituency,” added Abdul Kadir.
His response came after Papar MP Datuk Armizan Ali, one of the four MPS, reportedly claimed that the legal suit was a move to prevent a strong movement by a local-based party.
The other three GRS MPs in question are Matbali Musah (Sipitang), Khairul Firdaus Akbar Khan (Batu Sapi), and Datuk Jonathan Yasin (Ranau).
Abdul Kadir called the claim “ridiculous” and said the legal action did not mean Bersatu wanted to “kill off” Sabah-based parties.
“In a country that practises democracy, everyone must respect the law and the legal process. Indeed, this is what Bersatu is doing,” he said.
Sabah Bersatu was a part of the GRS state government coalition during GE15, but the latter went on to join the national unity government and cut ties with Bersatu.
There was initially confusion as Bersatu claimed the four MPs were its official members and part of the PN coalition, although the group maintained that they were direct members of GRS and contested on its ticket; the first scenario would have triggered the country’s anti-hopping law.
On Armizan’s statement that there was a wave of support for local-based parties, Abdul Kadir questioned why GRS only won six of Sabah’s 25 federal seats if that were the case.
“That was a dismal performance by any standard, especially by a ruling state government.
“Perhaps, especially for Armizan, it is (time) to wake up from this hallucination,” he said.