Archive for the ‘Sabah State Assembly GE13’ Category


Sarawak judge Yew Jen Kie’s 7-11 ruling allegedly misinterpreted the Sabah Constitution, denied the role of the state assembly, interfered in its prerogative and discretionary powers, and allowed frogs with statutory declarations (SDs) to decide on formation of government together with the Governor.

That’s the consensus in the court of public opinion.

If SDs can be considered, the judge failed to note that a reasonable time did not elapse between May 10 and May 12 when the frogs claimed to have lost confidence in Musa Aman.

The court should have said it won’t be party to an “illegality” and/or what reeked of “fraudulent” practices.

The SDs, she should have said, were tainted with all the elements of a conspiracy to overthrow a democratically-elected and lawfully established gov’t.

The courts generally look at whether it would be safe or otherwise to accept certain positions advocated by the parties in conflict.

In the case of the SDs by the frogs, it was certainly not safe for the court to accept them.

The Governor also should not have accepted them. Instead, he should have advised them to make their case at the state assembly, the right forum.

Rule BY Law is not Rule OF Law.

Rule OF Law basis of the Constitution.

The judge from Sarawak will be subject to scrutiny in the superior courts for the 7-11 ruling.

The Sabah Constitution must be upheld.

The judiciary should not interfere in the legislature.

The Governor should stay above the fray.

If the Governor had pointed the frogs after May 10 in the direction of the state assembly, there would be no 7-11. It’s besides the point that the state assembly was not in session.

The Governor can decide, in the wake of 7-11, whether to entertain frogs armed with SDs.

In future, he can be counted on to close the istana gates, and point the SD frogs in the direction of the state assembly.

7-11 is the last time the frogs can play their SD trick.

Rule of Law, basis of the Constitution, would be upheld.

If another group of frogs turn up tomorrow at the istana, armed with SDs, they won’t be entertained despite the 7-11 ruling.

The Governor will say, “I have discretionary powers mah!”

So, the 7-11 ruling is useless.

The SD Frogs would have to go to court to force the Governor to accept their self-serving and fraudulent claims. The superior courts would have to plug this loophole and restore the sanctity of the Sabah Constitution.

Daniel John Jambun

Human Rights Advocate

Tel: 010 878 6993


Borneo’s Plight in Malaysia Foundation (BoPiMaFo)

Sun 11 Nov 2018

Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Borneo-Malaysia


(Dr Jeffrey Kitingan of STAR Sabah & Wilfred Tanggau of UPKO)

Kota Kinabalu, Sat 3 Nov 2018


Sabah may see ‘shift’ in political allegiances

Speculation is rife in Kota Kinabalu, in the run-up to Nov 7, that several state assemblypersons may ditch the state gov’t soon to sit as “independents” in the state assembly.

It was not immediately clear from talk in the social media on whether the “shift” would take place before or after Nov 7.

Nov 7 is the day the High Court would decide on the lawful chief minister of Sabah. Umno Sabah Chief Musa Aman was sworn in as the head of gov’t on May 10. Forty eight hours later, the Governor swore in Parti Warisan Sabah president Shafie Apdal to replace the former.

According to the political grapevine, the “rebel” lawmakers have a long list of grievances which are yet to be addressed by the new administration.

“Don’t focus on Nov 7 too much,” said one post in a whatsApp group. “This has gone beyond Nov 7.”

“There are serious issues which are yet to be addressed.”

The “rebels” have claimed in private chat groups that it was premature at this juncture to flog the issues in public.

They are hoping against hope that the state gov’t will address the issues. If they are addressed, naturally there won’t be anyone taking an independent stand in the state assembly.

It has been learnt that some of the grievances of the “rebels” include the registration of “dubious” people for the issuance of late registration birth certificates and ICs, the state gov’t’s stand on a spate of fires that took place since mid-May in several squatter settlements, and land issues.

Other issues are appointments in the new administration, and the dismissals of village chiefs.

The “rebels” appear uncertain on how many of them would support the lawful Chief Minister declared on Nov 7. That appears to be a separate issue with the rebels.

All lawmakers have to search their conscience on the court’s declaration.

Perhaps they will cross the bridge when they come to it.

The circumstances under which the switch of chief ministers took place on May 12 remain somewhat murky. There are allegations of a conspiracy during the 48 hour period. Six nominated state assemblypersons, proposed by Musa, were also not sworn in.

Musa was not given the right to go to the state assembly to gauge his level of support. If he had been given the chance, it’s unlikely that any gov’t Bill would have been defeated.

It doesn’t happen.

If a gov’t Bill was defeated in the state assembly, it would be tantamount to a vote of no confidence in the chief minister.

The High Court is expected to shed light on Nov 7 on whether the defeat or otherwise of a gov’t Bill in the Sabah state assembly should be the “gold standard” to demonstrate the lack of confidence or otherwise in a sitting chief minister.

Amir Hussein Sulaiman (Tel: 0168406756)

A concerned citizen from Sarawak in the Land Below the Wind


Sabahans see end to simmering ‘constitutional crisis’ on 7-11

An eerie calm has descended on Kota Kinabalu in the run-up to 7-11, Nov 7, the day that Judge Yew Jen Kie from Sarawak will rule on whether the appointment of Shafie Apdal as Chief Minister on 12 May 2018 was constitutional or otherwise.

Musa Aman was earlier appointed, on May 10 in the wake of GE14 on May 9, as Chief Minister. Musa’s Barisan Nasional (BN) secured 29 seats, the majority under one symbol, in compliance with the Sabah Constitution.

Six defections from BN to the other side precipated the constitutional crisis which has been simmering since May 12. Shafie’s seats which can be counted under his Parti Warisan symbol remain at 21, less than the 23 seats left with Musa on May 12.

Shafie claims he has crossed the simple majority mark in the 60-seat state assembly under a coalition of parties viz. DAP, PKR and Upko with Warisan.

However, Musa still has the majority under the Sabah Constitution which stipulates the Chief Minister must have the most and/or largest number of seats under a registered political party i.e. one symbol.

The consensus in the court of public opinion sees Musa returning as Chief Minister to head a minority gov’t.

The public debate has come around to the realisation that the Sabah Constitution mandates this unique situation. It has no provision which calls for a simple or absolute majority to be Chief Minister.

The Shafie camp has been left clutching at straws.

They believe the judge can pull a “magical rabbit” from the hat in their favour.

The “magical rabbit” the judge can pull from the hat on Nov 7 would be to say that “it cannot be the intention of the state assembly to deny the formation of coalition gov’t in the 2nd instance, i.e. May 12, when the gov’t in the 1st instance, i.e. May 10, was ‘challenged’ by defections”.

If so, such a ruling would be fundamentally flawed, riddled with errors in facts, and errors in law.

True, it cannot be the intention of the state assembly to prevent/discourage the formation of coalition gov’t.

However, having said that, the main party in the coalition gov’t must still have majority as defined by the Sabah Constitution.

If coalition gov’t arises, the party in the first instance, i.e. May 10, can put together such a gov’t, if not go to the state assembly as a minority gov’t.

Minority gov’t is lawful.

It has to depend on independent lawmakers and/or rebel lawmakers to see the passage of gov’t Bills in the state assembly.

Not surprisingly, the public debate on May 12 has come full circle indeed. The court of public opinion expects Musa to be restored as Chief Minister on Nov 7.

Daniel John Jambun

Human Rights Advocate

Tel: 010 878 6993


Borneo’s Plight in Malaysia Foundation (BoPiMaFo)

Thurs 1 Nov 2018

Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Borneo-Malaysia


Shafie Apdal should respect ‘majority’ defined in Sabah Constitution

Beleaguered Chief Minister Shafie Apdal and his lawyers have been a bundle of contradictions in the court of public opinion on the issue of majority in the state assembly.

Briefly, they can be answered in simple terms:

Lawyer Douglas Lind for Shafie has been harping since the oral submission on Thurs 25 Oct 2018 that his client has the numbers with him.

He doesn’t talk about the majority defined in the Constitution.

Article 6(3) read together with Article 6(7) gives effect to the true meaning of majority in Article 6(3).

Numbers, according to Douglas, means Warisan 21 + Upko 5 + DAP 6 + PKR 2 = 34.

After May 12, the numbers were 34 + Umno 7= 41.

Had the Upko 5 joined Warisan as members before May 12, then Shafie would have had the majority as defined by the Sabah Constitution.

We assume the High Court would let the frogging by the Upko 5 to pass.

In fact, the correct interpretation of Article 6(7) eliminates and/or reduces party hopping as also intended by the repealed Article 18(2) (d).

The Sabah Constitution, in defining majority, talks about numbers under one symbol i.e. a registered political party, not coalition of parties.

The Umno 7 defected after May 12. Even if they have since joined Warisan, it cannot be counted.

On May 12, Shafie had only 21 lawmakers.

Musa Aman had 23 lawmakers with him. So, he had the majority i.e. more seats than Warisan and the largest number of seats.

Again, the definition of majority in the Sabah Constitution refers.

Musa just has to get the support of another 8 lawmakers to pass Bills in the state assembly or defeat any motion of no confidence.

Since Barisan Nasional (BN) is now down to 19, Musa has to get the support of another 12 lawmakers to pass Bills or defeat any motion of no confidence.

In any case, the Speaker can throw out any motion of no confidence.

Hopefully, the state assembly would not be dissolved before Nov 7. We just had GE14.

Article 6(7), inserted in 1990 by Enactment No. 5/1990, did not use the term absolute majority, in recognising that when more than two parties contest, none will secure an absolute majority in the state assembly.

Article 6(7) is a unique feature of the Sabah Constitution, and one absent in other state constitutions including Perak.

Majority, as per Article 6 (3), if read to mean 31 state assemblypersons out of 60, would be a grave constitutional error, as lawyer Sukumaran Vanugopal cautioned in the High Court on Thurs 25 Oct 2018.

Daniel John Jambun

Human Rights Advocate

Tel: 010 878 6993


Borneo’s Plight in Malaysia Foundation (BoPiMaFo)

Sun 28 Oct 2018

Kota Kinabalu, Sabah, Borneo-Malaysia


Not long back, many provided immense praise to Adenan Satem for deciding to proceed with tabling the motion demanding for the return of State rights. Up until quite recently, some even mocked at Musa Aman for not heeding Adenan’s call to bring the motion of a  Sabah assembly. Everyone was of an expert opinion on the matter. So much hooha all over social media claiming how brave, how smart and how politically correct Adenan was. The kicker is of course, today Adenan makes a 360° and says “we have decided not to pass the resolution demanding our rights after speaking to Najib” whilst claiming “the state government believes in consultation not confrontation to resolve issues between state and the federal”. Strange but true, this is what Musa has been saying all along- that the ‘Sabah Government has its own “gentler” approach, – more effective, better than shouting and demanding’ – The Sabah Way, ladies and gentlemen! As Adenan parrots Musa, one can only see how Musa is well ahead of the game!

KUCHING – After much bravado and statements in the media, Sarawak will not be pursuing the tabling of a motion on the state’s rights in next week’s state assembly meeting.

This follows Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak’s assurance that he is willing to discuss the matter, said Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem who had been pushing for this tough stance since last month.

Citing media reports from Kota Kinabalu last Saturday, Adenan said the Prime Minister is open to discussions if the Malaysia Agreement and Federal Constitution had been misinterpreted.

“In view of what the Prime Minister said, that he is going to be very accommodating to our claims, there is no need for us therefore to pass a resolution in the assembly demanding our rights under the Constitution, the Inter-Governmental Committee (IGC) report and Malaysia Act.

“We trust the Prime Minister to do the right thing and we have confidence that he will do it,” Adenan was reported as telling reporters after chairing a state Barisan Nasional pre-council meeting here Wednesday.

He said the state government believes in diplomacy rather than confrontation and has achieved some results through this approach, particularly in its negotiations with Petronas on oil and gas matters.

These include the appointment of a Sarawakian to the Petronas board of directors and Petronas undertaking to increase the number of Sarawakians at executive and management level.

“There is now a clear understanding between Petronas, the Federal Government and the state government as to our objectives,” Adenan said.

He also said the devolution of powers from the Federal Government to the state was an ongoing process, with the principal objective of addressing and resolving public concern over the erosion of the special safeguards granted to Sarawak under the Malaysia Agreement and the Constitution.

Earlier this month, Adenan said the state government would table a “comprehensive motion” to restore Sarawak’s rights and status to its position in 1963.

He had said the proposed motion would cover all aspects of the state’s rights, including seeking to reverse the 1976 amendment to Article 1(2) of the Federal Constitution that downgraded Sarawak’s status from an equal partner in Malaysia to one of 13 states.
The state assembly will meet on Nov 21 to 30.

And so it begins. The very first has just been presented by the new Sabah Government after being re-elected in May 2013, and after hours of back and forth (cursing and paper tearing included), the new budget shows that the Sabah Government is committed to progress and is also as determined to increase the pace of development in the state.

Musa Aman says the bulk of the Sabah budget is earmarked for development. The RM4.622 billion of the Sabah budget for the financial year of 2013-2014 proposed by Chief Minister-cum-State Finance Minister Musa Aman in the state assembly Friday sought to tell the Sabah growth story vis-a-vis Malaysia’s and achieve the five-year dream in the first year itself. The release states “The new budget for 2013-14 would build new confidence among people and showcase state’s potentialities before the world”. “Ensuring Continuity of People’s Well being”, it was announced that new missions and schemes, referring to State Barisan National’s Government is very committed to the development of not only in the urban but also rural areas in Sabah and at the same time ensuring nobody is sidelined in the budget.

A press statement continued by saying that “The State 2014 Budget is higher by nearly 80-fold than Sabah’s first State Budget 50 years ago where the revenue estimate was only RM61.5 million while the expenditure estimate was RM61 million. In 1974, the estimated revenue rose to RM207 million and the estimated expenditure increased to RM239 million. Ten years later in 1984, the estimated revenue reached RM1.22 billion while State revenue rose to RM1.38 billion. 2014, has set the highest ever State revenue target which is RM4.58 billion, marking an increase of 20 per cent from 2013’s original estimate of RM3.83 billion.”

Even as the Federal government earmarks just 35 per cent of the Federal Budget for development work, the Sabah government spends as much as 65 per cent of the state Budget on development work. Talking about Sabah’s contributing a lion’s share in the nation’s development, Musa said, “Although the state government was elected for a five-year term, it resolves to fulfill the people’s aspirations from the very first year itself.”

While Musa’s budget speech said the state economy has grown by leaps and bounds in the past five decades since independence, he added that “I am confident that people from all walks of live regardless of religion, race, gender, rich, poor, old or young, physically challenged, wherever they may be ( whether on land or sea); people’s well-being and States prosperity are our main agendas for us to always strive for, which are certainly achievable.”

So there is the mission for which the government has allocated RM 1.58 billion “for improving infrastructure and public amenities”. This is besides RM627.92 million allocate to upgrade water supply. Musa claims that to achieve zero hardcore poor target and reduce relative poor in Sabah, the government has allocated RM178.14 million to implement various programmes. The reduction of poverty from 19.7% in 2009 to 8.1% in 2012 proved that the governments efforts in this has borne fruits.

The budget, claiming to be for inclusive development, seeks to strike balance for growth in both agricultural and industry, enhance quality of life in rural and urban by focusing on housing and infrastructure. To empower the youths the Y Generation so that they will be more valuable, creative, innovative and productive through education, training, skill programmmes, sports and community activities the budget has set aside RM229.86. The budget also proposes The Enhancement of Knowledgeable Livestock Entrepreneur (K-Entrepreneur) Programme which will be continued.

To spur growth in the State tourism sector, particularly on investment in providing tourism facilities, the State Government has approved the Tourism Master Plan covering the coastal areas of Tuaran to Kota Belud and RM233.99 million has been set aside for next year. The State tourism sector targets 3.4 million tourist arrivals and an estimated tourism receipts of RM6.277 billion although while writing this, a Taiwanese tourist got killed and his wife got kidnapped in Pom Pom Island in Semporna by Abu Sayyaf bandits. Perhaps in this instance, it is best if the state tourism sector uses the money to ensure maximum security before handing out pamphlets about exotic resorts in the East Coast of Sabah.

For a fair and unbiased understanding of the ‘Sabah Story’ we should read it with an open mind and look at the State’s performance against the backdrop of the low socio-economic base from where it started its journey to rapid growth and spectacular development. The ‘Sabah Story’ is a story in the making, much like the Thousand-and-One Arabian Nights, it is not a story that concludes here and today and perhaps never will. Sabah inherited low levels of social indicators (at independence) and it is the change in these indicators where Sabah shows impressive progress. The literacy rate has risen from 22 per cent in 1960 to 69 per cent in 2001 and 80 per cent in 2011. Even the infant mortality rate per thousand has fallen from 144 in 1971 to 60 in 2001 and 21 in 2011.”

Anybody reading the ‘Sabah Story’ with an open mind would see it is a story of immense success that inspires hope and determination to achieve greater success. But an open mind is something that is alien to our liberal media and the intellectually bankrupt commentariat that controls publications which lay greater stress on fiction over fact.

In October 7, 2003, when the Sabah economy was going through turmoil, Musa Aman took charge of Sabah as the Chief Minister. Turn to March 2008 Barisan National and Musa Aman in Sabah is stronger than ever. BN had swept the polls in Sabah retaining power with more than two-thirds majority winning 59 out of 60 seats contested. In this age of fragmented polity where getting a majority seems unreal, BN under Musa Aman bagged 65 percent of the votes in almost all the places. Interesting to note is that these poll victories continued even two years later in 2010 when the PBS won Batu Sapi Parliamentary constituency in a by-election.

Then in May 5th 2013, Musa Aman breaks the 9-year CM jinx and becomes the longest serving chief minster in the history of Sabah and brings Barisan National to another impressive two-thirds victory for the state seats and winning 22 out of the 25 Parliamentary seats. How did Musa Aman and the people of Sabah make all this possible?

One particular remark of Musa Aman caught my pride and attention. He claimed that only politics of development can do something good, not the politics of vote bank. He said, “I have succeeded to deliver my message that politics of vote bank or politics of appeasement would not do any good, but the politics of development would do.” The truth in this statement is the future of Sabah. The truth in this statement will bring in faith of the Sabah population into the political democracy. Development, prosperity and improvement of the standards of living will and can bring in a permanent political stability. And will tag along prosperity with stability.

Today we are being short-sighted. The political attitude is of vote bank politics, ‘blanket’ politics, immediate selfish goals and corruption ridden personal growth. It is vicious cycle that takes us away from socio-economic development. Musa Aman also could have been short-sighted. He could have assumed his imminent fall in the elections and could have concentrated his energies in making as much wealth as possible for a lifetime. Instead he chose the difficult path of development. He once said, “An opportunity to work is good luck for me. I put my soul into it. Each such opportunity opens the gates for the next one.”

Faced with massive economic losses brought in by 2001, he concentrated on reorganizing the government’s administrative structure including Yayasan Sabah and embarked upon a massive cost-cutting exercise when he took over as chief minister in 2003. As a result of Sabah government efforts under the guidance of Musa, Sabah registered a GDP growth rate of over 5% during his first tenure. This was one the highest growth rate among all the Malaysian states.

Sabah is probably the only state witnessing more than 7% growth for a long time and also the only state growing higher than the country’s 5-6 per cent growth. Sabah is growing faster than some of the ASEAN economies. Plan expenditure has also leapfrogged from RM 2 billion plus in 2003-04 to RM 4 billion plus in 2012-13. It’s all about security, infrastructure development, transparent policies and prudent State fiscal management, which have contributed to Sabah’s growth.

During my stay in Tenom, I remember Padas River a notoriously polluted river had begun to be transformed and now appeared to be much cleaner, although the water was still extremely yellowish with siltation brought down from the upper parts of Keningau and Trusmadi the second highest mountain in Sabah, now it is flowing bank to bank and the water is better quality. If the Padas River has begun to meander once again, that’s because the water is flowing freely from the upper parts of Keningau and Trusmadi, courtesy the ambitious river-cleaning project of Musa Aman.

Padas River in full flow is an apt metaphor for the miracle that Musa Aman has pulled off in making Tenom a model for rural/urban development. Today it boasts of wide roads, shorter time to reach Brunei, Lawas, Sipitang and even Kota Kinabalu, better traffic control and minimum traffic congestion and ample green spaces and the cleanest town in Sabah. It is a delight to hear Musa Aman speak about development. He once said, “Our roads will be as good as the Autobahns of Germany”.

Development of roads in the state epitomizes this wind of change. When a foreign tourist, who has been visiting tourist spots in the state for long, whom I met recently in Tenom was asked about the most visible change, he said it was road and the “Tenom Coffee”. Sabah, for long, remained infamous for its bad roads and pitiable connectivity. People suffered due to utter lack of connectivity. Though the state is criss-crossed by several rivers, there were very few bridges across them, forcing people to make long detours to reach their destination just across the river.

Musa said about the changing Sabah: “The state is experiencing all-round development because of our policy of ensuring that the benefits of development first go to those at the bottom of the social ladder. Over the years, we rose above the feelings of race and religion which Sabah is all about, and have worked tirelessly on the agenda of inclusive development of the state.”

It’s a proud moment for Sabah that a political leader is showing us the path of long term development to win a democratic election, to be a popular leader. This is learning and teaching to all the national and regional political parties, who have not been far-sighted like Musa Aman.

Lets salute to the power of development.

If you have read my articles more than once, you would know that I detest demagogues. Not for personal or aesthetic reasons, but because in the twenty five years that I have covered Sabah politics, I have observed that the political culture demagoguery breeds is to blame for most of our economic and political problems. It has been my humble observation that whenever Sabah was ruled by a supposedly charismatic leader, skilled in the arts of demagoguery, Sabah suffered while the leader continued to look good. This is because demagogues rarely bother to deliver on their grandiose promises to remove poverty and bring development since they are confident that their ‘charisma’ is what brings in the votes and not their work. It is sadly true that they have far too often been proved right by voters.

So, when I saw demagoguery resoundingly trashed in the recent GE13 in Sabah, it lit a small flicker of hope in my cynical old heart. In Sabah, voters had a choice between an array of demagogues and a quiet, little man who allowed the work he had done in the past ten years to speak for him. Well done Sabah for voting for Musa Aman instead of the demagogues and poseurs who came to defeat him with their charisma and their party tricks.

Musa Aman’s main rival was a very skilled demagogue called Lajim Ukin. So skilled that he has shown himself to be undefeatable despite allegations that he made millions from lopsided agreements that the Sabah Local Government had signed away to his cronies when he was Minister of Local Government and Housing, and while he was busy with his slot machines. The local government he was heading went to pieces but Lajim thrived. After moving to a parliamentary seat, he came to Putajaya to become a celebrated federal deputy cabinet minister despite doing as little for the housing as he did for Sabah. He got away with his lack of administrative abilities by being such a brilliant demagogue. His demagoguery even served to conceal the utter lack of any sort of ability that he showed as minister.

The voters of Sabah did well by making sure he failed to defend his incumbency in his Beaufort Parlimentary seat, and in his state seat of Klias Lajim won by a slim majority of 342 votes after obtaining a total of 6,324 votes. They did even better to reject the advances of a another demagogue Anwar Ibrahim. He warned Sabahan voters that they would be making a big mistake if they voted for Musa Aman because he was a chief minister who had squandered the state and allowed centralisation of power.

Musa Aman chose not to respond to the charges flung at him and instead talked of how Sabah had improved in the past ten years and brought more development to Sabah and fought for more de-centralisation and delegation of power back to the state government. At an annual economic growth of 8 per cent in the past five years (compared to 2.5 per cent before), there are visible differences in Sabah that were excellently reported by the Daily Express newspaper’s editor in two articles last month.

From our weakness for demagogues have come the political dynasties that now control most political parties in Malaysia. Whenever this happens, a political party stops being a political party and becomes a family firm whose main purpose is to serve the interests of the family who controls it. Remember Shahrizat’s “lembu” episode? Yes, from this comes the tendency to see politics as business and then inevitably we have one or other member of the family who is projected as a commercial genius who mysteriously makes a lot of money very quickly while his wife or brother or sister goes into politics.

Malaysia has suffered enough from demagogues and dynasties. What we need are many, many more chief ministers like Musa Aman who show that they can win elections by working hard for the people who vote them to power. The voters of Sabah can truly be proud of the results they gave us on May 5th 2013. If this can happen in Sabah, then there really is hope of Malaysia becoming a fully developed country in 2020. But, voters must continue to tell the difference between demagogues and real leaders.

In February, Musa Aman seemed a trifle embattled. The Lahad Datu standoff the intrusion of almost 200 armed Filipinos in Lahad Datu, 10 of our Security Forces were killed – for the first time in his decade-long rule in Sabah, the Chief Minister was feeling the pressure.

But come April, as he announced his election manifesto, neatly appropriating the legacy of the state leader, Musa Aman had put behind him all disadvantages of the month before. He then set off to the length and breadth of the state showcasing his “Vibrant Sabah” policy. The message was lost on none – Musa Aman was still a crowd puller.

After eleven days of campaigning, as the Sabah Chief Minister reaches the fag end of his final round of campaigning, the biggest question being asked is – will that charisma continue to translate into votes for the Barisan National? Surveys and analysts predict yet another victory for man who has adroitly changed his image to development role model. At stake are bigger ambitions – Musa Aman reckons another impressive victory could propel him to be the longest serving chief minister of Sabah, breaking the 9 yrs jinx. But is this road a smooth one?

All I can say is- The situation in 2004 and 2008 is very different from that of 2013.

The ending of the rotation of chief minister every 2 years in 2004 saw Musa winning hands down. By 2008 Musa had begun constructing his new avatar, that of able administrator. But 2013 is without any emotive issue except for the Lahad Datu standoff. The fragmented opposition has managed to keep the election battle low profile, avoiding another bad showing like 2008. That has forced Musa Aman to keep his campaign confined to development as the key agenda.

But does that suit Musa Aman? “Not at all,” says a political commentator, who later add that, “His political existence and shrill rhetoric is what makes him an unstoppable leader. But this time there seems to be no emotive issue. The developmental plank can’t excite voters to a decisive point.”

Musa Aman, the master strategist, realises this. And so, analysts say, he has attempted to add another element to his electioneering this time, projecting this to be not only a Sabah vs Pakatan Rakyat battle but also the personality battle between Musa Aman and Anwar Ibrahim. By taking the battle to a new level, he is sending a very subtle message to the electorate. He may not concede his national ambitions but when he talks about the Sabah vs Pakatan Rakyat battle, he is sending out a message; here is a Sabah leader who can stop Anwar Ibrahim from taking the throne in Putrajaya. If that’s the case, 2013 will, in a way, establish what connects Musa Aman to three million Sabahans. If he wins yet again it clearly establishes that even without a polarized vote, Musa Aman can win based on a campaign revolving around development.

But this road is not without potholes.

Though pre-poll survey and pundits say former Deputy Chief Ministers Lajim Ukim and Wilfred Bumburing are unlikely to do much damage to Musa Aman. The L & B factor, as it’s is called in these parts, could play spoiler at least in the politically critical Beaufort and Tuaran region. Lajim had won a huge majority in the Beaufort Parliamentary last time in 2008, but this time both Lajim and Wilfred could play a role in obtaining less than half a dozen seats. After all Lajim represents the all-powerful Bisaya community and Bumburing represents the Dusuns to an extend, which is a sizable chunk of the electorate. But the basic problem with L & B would be absence of an organizational structure since both are using unregistered NGOs PPPS (Pertubuhan Pakatan Perubahan Sabah)and APS ( Angkatan Perubahan Sabah) riding on Pakatan Rakyat, to topple Musa Aman as chief minister. Lajim is politicising the position of “Janang Gayuh”, causing disunity among the Bisaya, a Dusunic group, found only in the Beaufort region. Lajim ran away from UMNO because he knew he would not be fielded this time, the same with Bumburing and UPKO who didn’t want him to stand in Tuaran. To be honest, what has Lajim and Bumburing done the last 30 years? Zilch.

After eleven days of campaigning in this 13th General Elections, Musa Aman is looking to retain power again, thus enabling Sabah to live up to the tag of being “the fixed deposit” of the BN. Despite the opposition pact’s onslaught for the parliamentary battle, Sabah BN is likely to win most of the seats won in the 2008 general elections. However, BN can expect tough fights for Kota Kinabalu, Sandakan, Tawau, Beaufort, Tuaran, Penampang, Sepanggar, Pensiangan, Kota Belud and Kota Marudu parliamentary seats. In the 2008 general elections, Sabah BN won 59 of the 60 state seats and 24 of the 25 parliamentary seats, losing the Sri Tanjung state seat and the Kota Kinabalu parliamentary seat to the opposition DAP.

The determining factor for BN’s ability to continue ruling Sabah lies in the fact that the coalition is more united in facing the elections, while the oppositon is pitted not just against BN but also against each other. Despite pre-election calls for the opposition parties to reach an understanding so as to ensure straight fights with the BN, only the Tanjung Batu State seat and Sandakan parliamentary seat are seeing one-to- one contests.

The decision by Star Sabah (Sabah Reform Party), SAPP (Sabah Progressive Party) and PKR to field almost equal number of candidates for the state seats is clear example of serious faction among them. Given the bickering among them, its hard to imagine any one of them winning enough seats to become the leader of the pack. On top of that, PKR’s insincere gesture of offering SAPP a limited number of state seats has resulted in the latter completely abandoning the hope of wanting to work with the peninsula-based party. There are campaign whispers alleging that SAPP had received RM60 million from BN to split votes in favour of the ruling coalition. Worst still during a ceramah in Foh Sang Kota Kinabalu which I personally witnessed, SAPP was on a DAP bashing spree causing distrust among the voters.

Dr Jeffrey Kitingan’s STAR on the other hand, the youngest parties of the lot, is making unexpected inroads particularly among the mostly Christian Kadazandusun Murut community in the interiors, and the BN message is as such tailored to them. So, if Pakatan cannot turn things around, it can only likely bag the Chinese-majority seats of Sandakan, Tawau and Kota Kinabalu, while in Beaufort where incumbent Lajim Ukin, who is contesting on PKR’s ticket, is likely to pull through. Pensiangan could be taken by Dr Jeffrey’s Star Sabah. SAPP is most likely not able to get even one seat.

With the end of the race just days away it is evident that winning big is extremely important to Musa Aman and how Sabahans vote will decide the road map to power politics in Putrajaya.

GE13: Full List of Candidates for Sabah State Assembly

Those marked with * are the Incumbents

N1 – BANGGI (9,861)

Datu Mohd Arifin Bin Datu Abdul Salam (STAR)

Abd Mijul Unaini ((BN- UMNO) *

Jae-ly Medong (SAPP)

Datu Abdul Razak Bin Datu Abdul Salam (PKR)

Datu Ariffin Datu Salam (STAR)

(2008: ABD MIJUL UNAINI: BN: Maj: 2,024)

N02 – TANJONG KAPOR (22,476)

Zainal Bin Nasiruddin (BERSAMA)

Datuk Teo Chee Kang (BN) *

Tsen Heng Chong @ Peter Tsen (SAPP)

Alexandra @ Alexander Anthony (Bebas)

Chin Chong Kui @ William Chin (PKR)

Hendiri @ Hendry Bin Minar (STAR)

(2008: DATUK TEO CHEE KANG: BN: Maj: 3,619)

N03 – PITAS (14,912)

Johnes @ Onis Bin Piut (SAPP)

Awang Latip Bin Abdul Salam (KITA)

Maklin Bin Masiau (STAR)

Datuk Bolkiah Bin Ismail (BN) *

Dausieh Binti Queck @ Paraman (PAS)

(2008: DATUK BOLKIAH ISMAIL: BN: Maj: 3,848)

N04 – MATUNGGONG (19,977)

Sarapin Bin Magana (BN)

Richard Bin Jiun (SAPP)

Marunsai Bin Dawai (STAR)

Jelin Bin Dasanap @ Jelani Bin Hamdan (PKR)

Jolius Bin Majawai (Bebas)

(2008: SARAPIN BIN MAGANA: BN: Maj: 2,982)

N05 – TANDEK (22,220)

Lasiah Baranting @ Anita (BN) *

Andonny Pilit @ Anthony Biri Mandiau (PKR)

Jebon Janaun (STAR)

Yapolai Bin Kundapit @ Henry (SAPP)

(2008: LASIAH BARANTING @ ANITA: BN: Maj: 2,237)

N06 – TEMPASUK (16,866)

Abdul Malik Bin Mohed (SAPP)

Laiman Bin Ikin (PAS)

Suwah Bin Buleh @ Bulleh (STAR)

Datuk Musbah Bin Jambli (BN) *

(2008: DATUK MUSBAH BIN JAMBLI: BN: Maj: 2,432)

N07 – KADAMAIAN (15,903)

Ukoh @ Jeremy Bin Malajad @ Malazad (PKR)

Rubbin Bin Guribah (STAR)

Timbon @ Herbert Bin Langadan (BN) *

Peter Marajin @ Peter Marazing (SAPP)

(2008: TIMBON @ HERBERT LAGADAN: BN: Maj: 2,473)

N08 – USUKAN (18,698)

Datuk Md Salleh Md Said (BN)

Bakhruddin Bin Ismail (STAR)

Mustapha @ Mohd Yunus Bin Sakmud (PKR)

(2008: DATUK JAPLIN AKIM @ ABD HAMID: BN: Maj: 4,023)

N9 – TAMPARULI (17,265)

Datuk Jahid Jahim (BN-PBS) *

Stephan Gaimin (SAPP)

Datuk Mojilip Bin Bumburing @ Wilfred (PKR)

Linggu @ Edward Bukut (STAR)

James Ongkili Jr (BEBAS)

(2008: DATUK JAHID @ NOORDIN JAHIM: BN: Maj: 2,743)

N10 – SULAMAN (19,587)

Datuk Hajiji Bin Haji Noor (BN) *

David Bin Orok (STAR)

Ariffin Bin Harith (Bebas)

Gulabdin @ Ghulabdin Bin Enjih (PKR)

Ali Akbar Bin Kawi (Bebas)

(2008: DATUK HAJIJI BIN HAJI NOOR: BN: Maj: 5,456)

N11 – KIULU (11,424)

Datuk Joniston Bangkuai (BN-PBS)

Tindil Gonsobil (SAPP)

Rhodes Bin Panilau (PKR)

Terence Sinti (STAR)

(2008: LOVIS RAMPAS: BN: Maj: 1,266)

N12 – KARAMBUNAI (28,971)

Datuk Jainab Ahmad (BN-UMNO) *

Aziz Ibrahim (SAPP)

Muali Bin Aching (PKR)

(2008: DATUK JAINAB AHMAD: BN: Maj: 3,018)

N13 – INANAM: SABAH: 24,403

Roland Chia Ming Shen (PKR)

Enchin Bin Majimbun @ Eric (SAPP)

Joseph Bin Paulus Lantip (BN)


N14 – LIKAS (15,294)

Chin Su Yin (BN-LDP)

Wong Hong Jun (DAP)

Datuk Yong Teck Lee (SAPP)

Ho Cheong Tshun (STAR)

(2008: DATUK LIEW TECK CHAN: BN: Maj: 862)

N15 – API API (15,103)

Datuk Dr Yee Moh Chai (BN-PBS) *

Wong Yit Ming (SAPP)

Liew Chin Jin (PKR)

Jude Marcel Joseph (Ind)

Dr Felix Chong Kat Fah (STAR)

(2008: DATUK YEE MOH CHAI: BN: Maj: 174)

N16 – LUYANG (20,119)

Datuk Agnes Shim (BN-MCA)

Hiew King Cheu (DAP)

Melanie Chia (SAPP) *

Jafery Jomion (STAR)

(2008: CHIA CHUI KET: BN: Maj: 1,502)

N17 – TANJUNG ARU (21,973)

Datuk Edward Yong Oui Fah (BN-PBS) *

Richard Yong We Kong (SAPP)

Mat Yunin @ Mohd Yunin Bin Atin (PKR)

Hamid Ismail (PAS)

Salleh Tiasi @ Tiaseh (STAR)

(2008: DATUK YONG OUI FAH: BN: Maj: 2,960)

N18 – PETAGAS (15,517)

Datuk Yahya Hussin (BN-UMNO) *

Mat Yunin @ Mohd Yunin Bin Atin (PKR)

Ahmad Awang Sah Sahari (STAR)


N19 – KAPAYAN (26,767)

Datuk Edward Khoo Keok Hai (BN) 8

Phillip Among @ Daniel Dell Fideus (STAR)

Dr Edwin @ Jack Bosi (DAP)

Chong Pit Fah (SAPP)

(2008: EDWARD KHOO KEOK HAI: BN: Maj: 2,062)

N20 – MOYOG (17,556)

Terrence Alon Siambun (PKR)

Bernard Lawrence Solibun (STAR)

Danim @ Aloysius Bin Siap (SAPP)

Datuk Philip Benedict Lasimbang (BN)

(2008: DONALD PETER MOJUNTIN: BN: Maj: 2,685)

N21 – KAWANG (19,901)

Datuk Gulamhaidar Khan Bahadar (BN-UMNO) *

Edward Dagul (SAPP)

Kefli @ Dzulkefli Bin Safar (PKR)

Akop Damsah @ Yakub (STAR)


N22 – PANTAI MANIS (18,870)

Datuk Abdul Rahim Ismail (BN) *

Noraizal Bin Mohd Noor (SAPP)

Fred Bin Gabriel (PKR)

Baharudin @ Baharuddin Bin Nayan (STAR)

(2008: DATUK ABDUL RAHIM ISMAIL: BN: Maj: 2,862)

N23 – BONGAWAN (14,851)

Mohammad Alamin (BN-UMNO)

Awang Talib Awang Bagul (SAPP)

Tan Sri Ibrahim Menudin (PKR)

Assim @ Hassim Harun Matali (STAR)

(2008: DATUK KARIM BIN BUJANG: BN: Maj: 5,730)

N24 – MEMBAKUT (11,777)

Datuk Mohd Arifin Bin Mohd Arif (BN) *

Narawi @ Sinar Bin Ahmad (PKR)

Banjimin Ondoi (SAPP)

Jaapar Bin Ag Gador (STAR)


N25 – KLIAS (15,338)

Mohd Sanusi Bin Taripin (SAPP)

Aliapa Bin Osman (STAR)

Datuk Lajim Bin Ukin (PKR)

Isnin Bin Aliasnih @ Liasnih (BN)

(2008: DATUK AZIZAH MOHD DUN: BN: Maj: 2,413)

N26 – KUALA PENYU (14,759)

Limus Jury (BN-UPKO)

Datuk Johan @ Christopher Bin OT Ghani (PKR)

Alexander Sintin @ Ining Sinten (STAR)

Jusbian bin Kenneth (BEBAS)

Haji Md. Tajuddin bin Hj. Md. Walli (BEBAS)

(2008: TEO KWAN CHIN @ TEO MAU SING: BN: Maj: 257)

N27 – LUMADAN (13,777)

Kamarlin Ombi (BN-UMNO) *

Jamain Sarudin (SAPP)

Ustaz Abdul Rahman Yaakob (PKR)

Md Jaafar Ibrahim (STAR)

Rapahi bin Edris (BEBAS)

Saudi bin Suhaili (BEBAS)

(2008: DATUK KAMARLIN OMBI: BN: Maj: 3,297)

N28 – SINDUMIN (15,400)

Ahmad Bujang (BN-UMNO) *

Amde @ Hamdi Sidik (SAPP)

Harunsah Bin Ibrahim (PKR)

Semion @ Fred Semion Sakai (STAR)

(2008: AHMAD BUJANG: BN: Maj: 1,904)

N29 – KUNDASANG (13,322)

Jain Sauting (STAR)

Cleftus Stephen Spine (Bebas)

Satiol Bin Indong (PKR)

Joachim Gunsalam (BN) *

Japiril Bin Suhaimin (SAPP)

Sam Bin Hondou (Bebas)

(2008: JOACHIM GUNSALAM: BN: Maj: 1,806)

N30 – KARANAAN (12,456)

Datuk Masidi Bin Manjun @ Masdi (BN) *

Jalibin Bin Paidi (STAR)

Mat Jaili Bin Samat (Bebas)

Muhiddin @ Mohd Anas Bin Yusin (PKR)

(2008: DATUK MASIDI MANJUN @ MASDI: BN: Maj: 5,116)

N31 – PAGINATAN (13,275)

Yazid Bin Sahjinan (Bebas)

Datuk Siringan Bin Gubat @ Aliance (BN)

Amru Bin Abd Kadir (PKR)

Pedderin @ Feddrin Bin Tuliang @ Tuling (STAR)

(2008: DATUK EWON EBIN: BN: Maj: 3,457)

N32 – TAMBUNAN (13,757)

Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan (BN-PBS) *

Wilfred Win Bin Ponil (PKR)

Nestor Joannes (STAR)

(2008: JOSEPH PAIRIN KITINGAN: BN: Maj: 2,781)

N33 – BINGKOR (15,878)

Kennedy Jie John @ Ken (BN-UPKO)

Dato Ahmad Shah Tambakau (PKR)

Datuk Dr Jeffrey G. Kitingan (STAR)

N34 – LIAWAN (14,056)

Datuk Sairin Karno (BN-UMNO) *

Paul Gitang (PKR)

Pauket Yadiloh @ Johari Tahir (SAPP)

Dr Nicholas J Guntobon (STAR)

Nusleh bin Madarak (BEBAS)

(2008: SAPIN @ SAIRIN KARANO @ KARNO: BN: Maj: 2,044)

N35 – MELALAP (12,074)

Datuk Radin Malleh (BN-PBS) *

Noorita binti Sual (DAP)

Roger Stimin (SAPP)

Kong Fui Seng (STAR)

(2008: DATUK RADIN MALLEH BN: Maj: 2,099)

N36 – KEMABONG (13,230)

Datuk Rubin Balang (BN-UMNO) *

William Ensor Tingkalor (SAPP)

Biou Suyan (PKR)

Tay Jin Kiong @ Alfred (STAR)

(2008: RUBIN BALANG: BN: Maj: 2,437)

N37 – SOOK (10,598)

Datuk Elron Angin (BN-PBRS) *

Datuk Frankie Chong Yu Chee (SAPP)

Liberty Lopog (PKR)

Drs Kustin Ladi (STAR)

(2008: RUBIN BALANG: BN: Maj: 2,437)

N38 – NABAWAN (9,840)

Datuk Bobbey Suan (BN-UPKO) *

Raymond Bin Ahuar (PKR)

George Iram (STAR)

(2008: BOBBEY AH FANG SUAN: BN: Maj: 2,087)

N39 – SUGUT (9,675)

Datuk James Ratib (BN-UMNO)

Petrus Zabang (PKR)

Masiawan Kunching (STAR)

(2008: DATUK SURADY KAYONG: BN: Maj: 2,535)

N40 – LABUK (15,013)

Datuk Michael Asang (BN-PBS) *

Datuk Tan Yong Gee (PKR)

Pinus Gondili (STAR)

(2008: DATUK METAH @ MICHEAL ASANG: BN: Maj: 5,455)

N41 – GUM GUM (11,734)

Hassan Hami @Hamid (STAR)

Ahmad Thamrin@Tamrin Mohd Jaini (PKR)

Datuk Zakaria Edris (BN) *

(2008: DATUK ZAKARIA MOHD. EDRIS: BN: won unopossed)

N42 – SUNGAI SIBUGA (28,038)

Datuk Seri Musa Aman (BN) *

Mohd Arshad Abdul (BEBAS)

A.M. Jafar @ Damaid Juana (SAPP)

Mohd Roslan Yussof (STAR)

Irwanshah Mustapha Ahmad (PKR)

(2008: DATUK SERI MUSA AMAN: BN: Maj: 7,657)

N43 – SEKONG (14,247)

Musah Bin Ghani (PKR)

Ahmad Bin Ibrahim (STAR)

Awang @ Abdul Nasip Bin Othman (SAPP)

Datuk Ilahan Datu Amilbangsa (Bebas)

Datuk Samsudin Bin Yahya (BN) *

(2008: DATUK SAMSUNDIN YAHYA: BN: Maj: 2,189)

N44 – KARAMUNTING (15,952)

Charles Pang (BN-LDP)

Chong Ket Kiun (DAP)

Yong Vui Min (SAPP)

(2008: DATUK PETER PANG EN YIN: BN: Maj: 3,362)

N45 – ELOPURA (22,317)

Liau Fook Kong (SAPP)

Au Kam Wah (BN) *

Hiew Vun Zin (DAP)

(2008: AU KAM WAH: BN: Maj: 5,409)

N46 – TANJONG PAPAT (14,741)

Frankie Poon (DAP)

Ken Yong Chie Man (SAPP)

Raymond Tan Shu Kiah (BN) *

(2008: RAYMOND TAN SHU KIAH: BN: Maj: 3,926)

N47 – KUAMUT (14,915)

Masiung Banah (BN) *

Edward Podok (STAR)

Mustapa Bin Datu Tambuyong (PKR)

(2008: MASIUNG BANAH: BN: Maj: 1,672)

N48 – SUKAU (9,833)

Datuk Saddi Abdi Rahman (BN-UMNO) *

Ahdah Sulaiman (PAS)

Juhori Paritai (STAR)


N49 – TUNGKU (14,626)

Datu Shuaib Bin Dato Mutalib (SAPP)

Datuk Mohd Suhaili Bin Said (BN) *

Tsen Yun Fah @ Mohd Azlan Tsen Abdullah (Bebas)

Johani Bin Abd Halim (PKR)

Johan Bin Nul (STAR)

(2008: DATUK MOHD SUHAILI SAID: BN: Maj: 2,382)

N50 – LAHAD DATU (25,232)

Aliandu Bin Enjil (SAPP)

Dato’ Mohammad Yusof Bin Apdal (BN)

Hamid Awong @ Abdul Hamid Awong (PKR)

Ariffin Bin Hamid @ Alfa Hamid (STAR)

(2008: DATU NASRUN DATU MANSUR: BN: Maj: 3,058)

N51 – KUNAK (11,804)

Datuk Nilwan Bin Kabang (BN) *

Kasman Bin Karate (PAS)

Hussein Bin Ibnu Hassan (Bebas)

Valentine @ Rengers Sebastian (STAR)

Abdul Sattal Bin Shafiee (Bebas)

Sharif Shamsuddin Bin Sharif Sagaf (Bebas)

(2008: DATUK NILWAN BIN KABANG: BN: Maj: 4,115)

N52 – SULABAYAN (12,642)

Datuk Jaujan Sambakong (BN)

Hermeny Murgal (PKR)

Julkalani Abd Rahman (Bebas)

Hussein Mumakil (Bebas)

Hasaman Sagaran (MUPP)

Mamat Barhana (Bebas)

Ghazalie PG. Hindi @ Abdul Ghani (Bebas)

(2008: HARMAN MOHAMAD: BN: Maj: 2,037)

N53 – SENALLANG (13,210)

Datuk Nasir Tun Sakaran (BN) *

Mohd Amin Abdul Mem (PKR)

Datu Badaruddin Tun Mustapha (Bebas)

Abdul Manang Hatib Lawari @ Osman (Bebas)

Abdul Karim Talip (Bebas)

(2008: DATUK NASIR TUN SAKARAN: BN: Maj: 5,432)

N54 – BUGAYA (15,697)

Datuk Ramlee Marahaban (BN) *

Hasai Tudai (PAS)

Abdul Hussin Kiamsin (Bebas)

Atal Muhammad KK Abd Menang (Bebas)

Alimin Budin (Bebas)

Abdullah Sani Abdul Salleh (Bebas)


N55 – BALUNG (13,526)

Datuk Syed Abas Syed Ali (BN) *

Abdul Hamid Mohamad Noor (SAPP)

Frank Salazar @ Franco (PKR)

Abdillah Timbasal (Bebas)

(2008: DATUK SYED ABAS SYED ALI: BN: Maj: 3,737)

N56 – APAS (15,837)

Tahir Bin Dahu (SAPP)

Chok Yit Min (STAR)

Alizaman Bin Jijurahman (PKR)

Datuk Tawfiq Bin Abu Bakar Titingan (BN) *


N57 – SRI TANJUNG (22,175)

Fung Len Fui (BN-PBS)

Chan Foong Hin (DAP)

Yong Chong Kim (SAPP)

Olivia Chong Oi Yun (STAR)

(2008: WONG SZE PHIN @ JIMMY: DAP: Maj: 1,172)

N58 – MEROTAI (18,317)

Mohd Bin Manuke (BEBAS)

Rita Rudiansah Abu Bakar (BEBAS)

Ho Shau Vui (SAPP)

Datuk Chin Chee Syn (BEBAS)

Datuk Pang Yuk Ming (BN) *

Ahmad Dullah (PAS)

(2008: DATUK PANG YUK MING: BN: Maj: 242)

N59 – TANJONG BATU (18,386)

Fatmawaty Mohd Yusuf (PAS)

Datuk Hamisa Samat (BN) *

(2008: DATUK HAMISA SAMAT: BN: Maj: 4,422)

N60 – SEBATIK (10,090)

Mohd Yusup Lewah (BEBAS)

Daud Jalaluddin (PAS)

Abd Muis Picho (BN) *

Mohamad Jefrry Rosman (STAR)

(2008: ABD MUIS PICHO: BN: Maj: 3,831)