TAMBUNAN, Sept 24 — The first visual signs of the truce between Parti Solidariti Tanah Airku (STAR) and Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) could be seen in this interior district of Sabah today — three days after they came to a political compromise.
Flags of PBS and posters of its candidate Silverius Bruno that had previously decorated the town were removed by party workers this morning.
Down the same road, larger and more prominent posters of STAR president Datuk Seri Jeffery Kitingan were being put up, alongside Perikatan Nasional (PN) banners.
When asked, a worker removing the PBS flags and Bruno posters said he received instructions to do so this morning.
“They said to remove them because he is no longer contesting for the seat,” the worker who declined to be named said, referring to Bruno.
The worker said all PBS flags taken down in Tambunan were to be returned to the party for storage, but that posters with Bruno’s face and candidate number were to be disposed.
Malay Mail understands that Kitingan and Bruno met last night at STAR’s operations centre in Tambunan for a talk.
The details of their half-hour meeting are not known, though the removal of Bruno’s posters as Kitingan’s goes up suggests something has been resolved.
PBS and STAR are local Sabah parties aligned to the federal PN coalition. Both parties that had clashed in a number of seats reached an agreement last Monday.
As a result, PBS agreed to withdraw from the Tambunan and Bingkor seats in Keningau.
In return, STAR said it would ask the independent candidates it was supporting in Bengkoka and Api-Api to instead stump for PBS.
Following Monday’s truce, local portal Sabah News Today reported that campaigners in 10 PBS district polling centres have reneged against the party and are now supporting Upko’s Tambunan candidate Datuk Dr Laurentius Nayan Ambu.