PENAMPANG, Aug 6 — Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) is ready and raring to go for its traditional strongholds in the coming Sabah state election, said its president Datuk Seri Dr Maximus Ongkili.
Ongkili said although PBS is excited to fly its own flag after 16 years, it is ready to work closely with like-minded parties against their common political enemies.
“We are not alone in this fight. But to win, we have to work and come up with consensus amongst our political partners, namely PPBM (Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia) and others in Perikatan Nasional. PBS needs to know its strength and abilities so there should be no question of putting a test on our chances.
“We have to be sure of the grassroots support before we commit ourselves to contest in a particular area,” he said in his speech at the Supreme Council Members meeting at the party headquarters here today.
His speech was read out by PBS deputy president Datuk Seri Radin Malleh, who has been entrusted to lead PBS’ preparation for the snap polls.
Ongkili, who is Minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Sabah and Sarawak Affairs), said PBS will be announcing its candidates soon, which will see a good number of new faces, including women.
“It is my hope that everyone will be committed to work hard together, offer your energy and materials, and help in every aspect to ensure victory in all the seats we are contesting,” he said.
PBS, which left Barisan Nasional (BN) after the 14th general election, had earlier said it is looking at contesting 30 seats in the coming state election.
The Kota Marudu Member of Parliament also urged members to recruit new members, especially young voters, and assure them that PBS is still the best multiracial party to serve the people of Sabah.
“Listen to the grouses from our grassroots and youngsters. The younger members are our future leaders, and we must not feel threatened by them. They will be our successors, including my post as the president,” he said.
Formed in 1985, PBS is the longest surviving local political party in Sabah with 61 divisions and 2,000 active branches in the state including Labuan.
Ongkili noted that in areas where PBS is not contesting, it will support candidates from parties which share the common objective of defeating the Warisan-led state government. — Bernama