10 Sabah MPs pledge support for Shafie amidst defection rumours

All 10 of Parti Warisan Sabah’s MPs were named in the statement to deny the rumour and pledged their support to Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal. — Bernama pic
All 10 of Parti Warisan Sabah’s MPs were named in the statement to deny the rumour and pledged their support to Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal. — Bernama pic

KOTA KINABALU, June 10 — Members of Parliament from Parti Warisan Sabah have issued a statement to deny a report that there would be defections from the party as alleged by a local Malay daily.

All 10 of its MPs were named in the statement to deny the rumour and pledged their support to Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Shafie Apdal.

“We firmly deny such baseless rumours and wish to make clear that the said report and statements are entirely false.

We continue to stand firm behind with our chief minister through these trying times for our nation,” they said.

They said that the “scandalous” defection rumours were a reflection of the desperation of the Perikatan Nasional (PN) government to secure and maintain its razor-thin majority in Parliament before the July session where there are plans to call for a motion of no confidence against the prime minister.

“This seems to have sparked an unethical ‘shopping spree’ of MPs of sorts. But not us. We will not betray the people’s mandate. We stand resolute by our principles,” they said in the statement.

Batu Sapi MP Datuk Liew Vui Keong, Penampang MP Datuk Ignatius Dorell Leiking, Lahad Datu MP Datuk Mohamaddin Ketapi, Sepanggar MP Datuk Mohd Azis Jamman, Kota Belud MP Isnaraissah Munirah Majilis @ Fakharudy, Kalabakan MP Ma’mun Sulaiman, Papar MP  Ahmad Hassan and Labuan MP Datuk Rozman Isli were the undersigned.

Munirah, in a separate statement, said she was shocked to read the article which claimed that a woman MP was among those four MPs rumoured to be defecting.

“I am the sole woman MP from Warisan and I fully deny any intention to leave the party and join PN. I was among the early initiators of the party who travelled statewide since 2016 to get the party off the ground.

“I’ve earned the position of elected representative from gaining the people’s trust on the Warisan platform and I will not let it go to waste,” she said.

Yesterday, Warisan secretary-general Datuk Loretto Padua Jr had to deny the same report in Harian Metro alleging four of its MPs were defecting to PN. The article has since been taken down.

The Sabah government has repeatedly had to fend off rumours of a toppling following a loss of support from its elected representatives.

The state has been rife with rumours of imminent party jumping as the joint Opposition bloc is trying to woo back former Umno members from the Warisan-Pakatan Harapan-Upko government.

Umno, Parti Bersatu Sabah and Parti Solidariti Tanah Airku are in an alliance and the talk in town is that they have been trying to get Bersatu and Warisan assemblymen to join forces and topple the state government.

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