KUALA LUMPUR, Aug 18 ― The Barisan Nasional (BN) coalition hopes to persuade its political allies to field their candidates in the upcoming Sabah state election under its banner, Datuk Seri Bung Moktar Radin said today.
The Sabah BN chairman and state Umno chief appeared confident they will agree.
“[We] will use the BN logo. We will negotiate with other parties,” he told reporters at Parliament here.
The Kinabatangan MP also said he hopes to run for a state seat.
“If [my] friends allow it, I will contest,” he said.
National BN chairman and Umno president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi, who was present at the press conference, added that the coalition hopes to reach an agreement with other like-minded parties in the Sabah Opposition.
He said he is aware that parties like Parti Bersatu Rakyat Sabah (which is part of the Sabah BN family), Parti Solidariti Tanah Airku Rakyat Sabah (STAR), Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS), Bersatu and Parti Cinta Sabah (PCS) now led by former Umno leader Datuk Seri Anifah Aman, are keen to be part of the state government.
“We will honour a negotiation where Sabah BN and Umno chief will have a preliminary negotiation with respective party leaders,” said Zahid, adding that Bung Moktar has full autonomy to decide on the candidates to be fielded in the 73 state seats on behalf of BN.
“Sabah BN will also decide on candidates involving 73 state assembly seats.
“When the state election is over, we will see if we have won enough majority to form a state government, and from there, will pick a chief minister among the assemblymen,” he added.
The Sabah assembly was dissolved on July 30 in a preemptive bid to prevent the ouster of the Warisan-led state government by former chief minister Tan Sri Musa Aman with the support of 13 assemblymen who defected to the latter’s side.
Nomination for Sabah falls on September 12 and polling day is on September 26.
The campaigning period will last 14 days. Early voting will be held on September 22.