KOTA KINABALU: Former Sabah chief minister Musa Aman today announced he has a simple majority to form a new state government after securing enough support from Sabah assemblymen.
He said the assemblymen are from Warisan, PKR, Sabah PPBM and Umno.
“The next step is to meet the Sabah governor and hand him the statutory declarations from the assemblymen,” Musa said at a press conference here.
Speculation had been rife in recent weeks that there would be a change in government with defections from the Warisan-led Pakatan Harapan-plus government, and that Musa, who had been the longest serving chief minister, would return to helm the state.
Sources had said that 14 to 16 assemblymen from the ruling coalition would switch camps, leaving the opposition, which now has 20 assemblymen, enough seats to form a new state government. There are 65 seats in the state assembly.
The present government, led by Chief Minister Shafie Apdal, has been in power for 27 months.
The purported change in the state government gained pace after the fall of the PH federal government to Perikatan Nasional (PN) in February.
The first cracks in the Warisan-led government was revealed last month when Sugut representative James Ratib and Kuala Penyu representative Limus Jury quit Upko, one of the component parties.
At the press conference in his house today, Musa said governor Juhar Mahiruddin had asked him to show proof of the SDs stating the assemblymen’s support for him.
“I have received the SDs from the assemblymen confirming their stand to join the new alliance I am leading.
“I also wish to inform that Home Minister Hamzah Zainudin and the political secretary to the prime minister had paid a courtesy visit to the governor this morning to notify him that the new alliance that is in support of Perikatan Nasional has attained a simple majority to form the government,” he said.
Amons those present were PKR’s Kenny Chua (Inanam), DAP’s Ronnie Loh (nominated assemblymen) and Warisan’s Osman Jamal (Balung), Hamisa Samat (Tanjung Batu), Musbah Jamli (Tempasuk), Bolkiah Ismail (Pitas), Anita Baranting (Tandek) and Upko’s Abidin Madingkir (Paginatan).
Musa did not specify the majority he has but said the alliance would be made up of representatives from Sabah Umno, PPBM, STAR, PBS and elected assemblymen from Warisan, Upko, PKR and DAP.
He said the new government, if it was formed, would come up with better policies to bring Sabah out of the poor economic situation partly caused by the Warisan-led government.
He said the state had also shown “weakness” in dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Together, with the help of the federal government, I believe we can overcome the challenges to propel the economy, create jobs and improve the lives of the people,” he said.
Musa also thanked his supporters for their loyalty, saying he was not expecting anything other than their full commitment and dedication.