- February 6, 2019
- Posted by: admin
- Category: Daily News
- FORMER Sabah Umno liaision chief Hajiji Mohd Noor on 6 Feb 19 says Bersatu will indeed set foot in the state, after previous assurances that the party will not form a Sabah chapter.
- The Sulaman assemblyman, who led an exodus of five state reps and MPs from the state Umno chapter in Dec 18, said he was in talks with Bersatu’s leaders on the matter. On when, Hajiji said: “I can assure you that it is very soon.”
- Hajiji led the exodus of five Sabah reps and six MPs from Sabah Umno on 12 Dec 18. A few days later, Bersatu chairman Dr Mahathir Mohamad had said the party would not open a Sabah chapter but that it was “open to those who want to join the party”.
- Meanwhile, controversial MP Bung Mokhtar Radin, who never expected to be called to take charge when Sabah Umno was hamstrung by a mass of resignations in Dec 18, intends to do his job well.
- More than a month after the departure of most of the key leaders in Sabah, Bung has commenced work to reestablish Umno as a political force in the state.
- He said that it was the spirit of those still loyal to the party that had encouraged him to take on the duties of the chief. And so the savagely outspoken MP, as Bung is known to be, became the Sabah Umno chief on 12 Dec 18.
- Umno president Ahmad Zahid Hamidi chose Bung for the job mere hours after the state chief Hajiji Mohd Noor resigned from the party and took with him nine assemblymen and five MPs. The group left to become pro-Pakatan Harapan independents.
- The deep-rooted problems in Umno were further highlighted when weeks later Zahid himself was forced to go on leave and hand over the task of running the party to deputy president Mohamad Hassan.
- Bung appears to have settled into his new role. He is ready to undertake his new responsibilities but said that at this point, he is not yet bogged down by party affairs.
- The work right now is “mostly groundwork, meeting the grassroots, taking stock of the party and setting the party focus,” he said.
- In the aftermath of GE14, Sabah Umno remains the largest party in the state. Membership stood at over 560,000, Bung said. On Umno working with PAS, he said the pact did not affect Sabah Umno which has autonomy.
- On the agenda for Sabah Umno, Bung said the party which lacks representation in the state assembly will be a strong opposition force in Sabah. He said Sabah Umno will support good government policies such as the ban on exporting logs but will be critical of bad ones.
- He said the eight month old Warisan-led state government has not brought forth anything beneficial to the people.
- Bung said the state government must stop its habit of blaming the previous government for everything, when “it has not improved any of the people’s livelihood issues and instead continues to carrying out projects mooted by Barisan Nasional.”
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