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Sabah election: PBS to contest 30 seats, fly its own flag after 16 years

05 Aug 2020 / 07:30 H.

KOTA KINABALU: Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) is looking at contesting 30 seats in the upcoming state election and in the process of finalising its list of candidates.

Its deputy president, Datuk Seri Radin Malleh said a thorough analysis of the party’s strengths and support in all the 73 state constituencies indicated that PBS had a strong potential of winning the 30 seats.

“We only plan to contest 30 seats because we want to be reasonable, realistic and practical,“ he said in a statement, here, yesterday.

Radin, who chaired the party’s political bureau meeting on Monday, said a good number of new faces including women were among those being considered as the party’s flag-bearers in the election.

He also said that PBS would be using its own flag, a hand-shake symbol, after 16 years.

PBS, formed in 1985, had used its own flag in four state elections (1985, 1986, 1990 and 1994), but after it rejoined Barisan Nasional (BN) in 2002, the party had contested using the BN logo in 2004, 2008, 2013 and until the 2018 general election.

PBS is the longest-surviving local political party in Sabah with 61 divisions all over the state and in Labuan, and with more than 2,000 active branches. The party has also set up a protem divisional committee in the 13 new seats.

Radin said PBS had been quietly working very hard and they were confident that “they have what it takes to win as many seats in the election”.

“Being a multiracial party, PBS is capable of winning any seat it contests, be it in Kadazan-Dusun-Murut- Rungus (KDMR), Muslim Bumiputera and Chinese-majority constituency, while in areas where PBS is not contesting, we will support candidates from like-minded parties which share the common objective of defeating the Warisan-led government,” he added.

PBS president Datuk Seri Dr Maximus Ongkili, who is still recuperating from ailments brought by extreme exhaustion, has tasked Radin to lead PBS’ preparations for the election.

The Sabah state assembly was dissolved on Thursday, paving the way for a state election, which must be held before Sept 29.

In the 14th general election, 60 state seats were contested but in July last year, the Dewan Rakyat approved a motion to add 13 more state seats in Sabah, bringing the total to 73. — Bernama

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