KUALA LUMPUR, Oct 27 — PKR has accepted the membership application of Datuk Seri Salleh Said Keruak, a former Umno federal minister said to have been loyal to Datuk Seri Najib Razak, The Malaysian Insight reported today.
Citing unnamed sources, the news portal said a formal announcement on Salleh’s entry is expected to be made “very soon”, possibly tomorrow.
“The PKR political bureau on Friday agreed to accept Salleh’s application. The only thing pending is the announcement,” a source close to the party leadership was quoted as saying.
Another source close to Salleh was also reported to have confirmed that the former communications and multimedia minister’s application has been accepted by PKR.
The two sources said the announcement is likely to be made when party president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim officiates the Sabah PKR congress in Kota Kinabalu tomorrow.
Yesterday, Anwar acknowledged the top PKR leadership discussed Salleh’s online application, but has not decided whether or not to accept the former Barisan Nasional minister into its fold.
“We have not yet decided, but we’ve held discussions on it. We will always refer to local divisions for their approval,” Anwar was quoted as saying.
Last Friday, Sabah PKR chief Datuk Christina Liew also affirmed the party’s political bureau had discussed the matter during a meeting last week and that Salleh’s application would be considered.
““I was at the meeting and I gave my opinion on the matter. Everyone present got to speak. The decision was to consider his application. I don’t know what decision the HQ will make, or if it has made one,” she told reporters in Kota Kinabalu.
She, however, denied being aware of Anwar’s announcement of Salleh’s membership on Monday.
Salleh was perceived to be a loyalist of former prime minister Najib and had been critical against the first prime ministership of Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad from 1981 to 2003.
The Sabahan applied online to join PKR in August.
He failed to retain his Kota Belud parliamentary seat in the general election in May last year, and quit Umno in December.
Salleh, who is also a former Sabah chief minister, had said he wanted to join PKR as the party practised multiracial politics that was in line with his political stand and views and also the political situation in Sabah.
Salleh had been an Umno member but left the Malay nationalist party for United Sabah National Organisation, a non-governmental outfit representing Bajau natives of East Malaysia, after Sabah-based components abandoned BN following its 14th general election defeat.