The jostling for a new Sabah Yang Di-Pertua Negeri will come to an end soon. The services of Sabah Yang Di-Pertua Negeri Tun Ahmadshah Abdullah may be extended for yet another one year after serving two terms so far. His term ends in December, 2010.
Tun Ahmadshah’s name was apparently sent to Premier Najib for approval, who would then get the Agong for the final approval of the appointment. No formal announcement has been made yet.Tun Ahmadshah’s tenure will be extended to another year beginning Jan 1, 2011. Tun Ahmadshah, who will turn 64 this December, was appointed as Sabah’s ninth Yang Di-Pertua Negera, replacing Tun Sakaran Dandai on Dec 2 2002.
Although Tun Ahmadshah is close ally to Musa Aman and was classmate to Musa Aman during Sabah College days, his extension of service only reinforces that Musa Aman will continue to be Chief Minister of Sabah way after the anticipated upcoming 13th General Elections.
Even before Tun Ahmadshah’s term is extended as Governor is announced, the maneuvering for the position had begun about six months ago. But, with this move now, various groups which aggressively insisted on who they believed should be the Governor of Sabah will come to a stop. Initially, rumors swirled that Musa Aman may step down as Chief Minister of Sabah and be appointed as the new Governor of Sabah, as a compromise for him to leave the Sabah Chief Minister-ship gracefully. But this is not the case now. Another individual mentioned was Speaker of the Parliament, Pandikar Amin Mulia. Pandikar is eager but he has to wait for Parliament to be dissolve first and that might take awhile, so he is out too. The other player who is lobbying for this price position is Yahya Hussein, the minister of agriculture and food industry but Yahaya it seems have been promised the position as the next Speaker of the state assembly.Another front-runners for the post was also the current State Assembly Speaker Juhar Mahiruddin. The other contender was former Finance Ministry permanent secretary Yusof Kassim but he has been promised the position of Mayor of Kota Kinabalu. Then we also had the Mayor of Kota Kinabalu Iliyas Ibrahim, whom is Musa’s very close ally, also a classmate and favored by Musa to be the next Governor. Mayor Iliyas Ibrahim was the strongest contender in fact, as he had the blessings of Musa himself. He’s been mayor for two terms already and doing a great job as Mayor of Kota Kinabalu, and should be about to step down, but hear that his contract as Mayor has also been extended for a year.
So with Ahmadshah’s extension as TYT, it is a conclusion that his appointment was the result of a political compromise that advanced Musa Aman’s Sabah development credentials and Premier Najib is in total agreement to that. Premier Najib is happy with Musa Aman’s performance as Chief Minister and after spearheading the Batu Sapi Parliamentary By-Election victory, everything goes Musa Aman’s way- Musa Aman is riding high. Besides, Premier Najib would not want to rock the boat in Sabah for the time being, as Musa has displayed his leadership abilities quite well so far.
With this, it means Musa Aman could be poised to become the most powerful man in Sabah and Premier Najib is very much in favour of Musa Aman to be in the helm of Sabah even after the upcoming 13th General Elections.