Gabungan Bersatu Sabah (GBS), a coalition of four political parties – PBS, Umno, Star and PBRS - officially took off today with PBS president Joseph Pairin Kitingan as its interim chairperson.
PBS, Umno and PBRS were former component parties of the Barisan Nasional which lost in the 14th general election on May 9 after being in power for 61 years in the country. With the formation of GBS, the BN in Sabah is officially dead.
PBS deputy president Maximus Ongkili, Sabah Umno chairman Hajiji Noor, Star president Jeffrey Kitingan, PBRS president Joseph Kurup and independent Kimanis MP and former foreign minister Anifah Aman were appointed deputy chairpersons.
Former Sabah Tourism, Culture and Environment minister Masidi Manjun, former Communication and Multimedia minister Salleh Said Keruak and Kiulu assemblyperson Johniston Bangkuai were appointed interim secretary-general, treasurer and information chief.
All elected representatives of the four parties were automatically made GBS committee members.
Pairin, in announcing the formation of GBS at a media conference in Kota Kinabalu, said it was formed to meet the aspirations of the people who were hungry for change following the changed political landscape in the state with the era of the previous BN regime having ended.
He added that the new coalition would seek registration with the Registrar of Societies and would also give its full cooperation to the Pakatan Harapan-led federal government in the interest of the New Malaysia and Sabah.
Meanwhile, Masidi said the leaders had reached a consensus that all the heads of the parties would be made joint chairpersons under the next phase while Pairin and former Sabah chief minister and former Sabah BN chairperson Musa Aman will be advisors.
With the new development, GBS controls 21 seats in the 60-seat state assembly and 10 (seats) in the 222-seat Dewan Rakyat .