Malaysiakini News

Disgruntled PBS members to join the opposition

Dzailani Ahmad  |  Published:  |  Modified:

While Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) is determined to rejoin the ruling Barisan Nasional coalition, some of its disgruntled members may cross over to opposition parties.

A few have already crossed over to another BN component party in Sabah, while many are planning to defect to the opposition.

Keadilan supreme council member Khalid Jaafar said he learnt that a number of PBS members would quit the party and join the opposition parties in the Barisan Alternatif coalition.

Many PBS members are not happy with their leader (Joseph Pairin Kitingan) who decided that the party rejoin BN. Kitingan made the decision without their consent.

"Those who opposed PBS' decision are planning to quit the party during or after the BN supreme council meeting," he said in an interview at his office here.

Khalid said he was told that the number of people quitting PBS is "high", and most of them are planning to cross over to opposition parties.

"Keadilan is willing to 'shelter' them if they are really interested to join us," he said, adding that the party would take all necessary steps to encourage PBS members to "jump ship".

Crossover to Upko

PBS members led by state assembly representative Clarence Bongkos Malakun crossed over to United Pasok Momogun Khadazan Organisation (Upko) last week.

The move was part of the protest against Pairin's decision to rejoin BN.

Prime Minister Dr Mahathir Mohamad said on Friday that Umno supported the re-entry of PBS.

He said the party had no problem with PBS rejoining the Barisan Nasional and its stand would be made known at the BN supreme council meeting, which would be held after Hari Raya.

It is expected that the re-entry of PBS and Malakun's crossover to Upko will be one of the main topics for discussion at the Barisan Nasional meeting.

In another development, Khalid said the Malaysian Muslim Congress (Kima), which claims to have more than 100,000 members nationwide, is planning to join Keadilan soon.

He said several leaders from the congress have expressed their intention to join an independent party and most likely it would be Keadilan.

"Keadilan is happy to have Kima in our family. We hope that its presence will strengthen the party and the BA coalition," he said, adding that the party would conduct several discussions with the congress leaders on the matter.

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