KUALA LUMPUR, Sept 23 — Former prime minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has urged all Sabahans to reject parties that are trying to come into power through the “backdoor”.
Dr Mahathir said if it was not for the fact that the federal government is trying to “steal” the state, Sabah would not have to face elections.
“This state election should not be taking place because the people of Sabah picked the state government that they wanted during the 14th general election in 2018.
“Not only is this move wrong, it has also taken away the right of the Sabah people to choose their state government and this goes against democracy,” he can be heard saying in a video clip released tonight.
The clip is part of his campaign material for Parti Warisan Sabah since he will not be campaigning in person for the party in Sabah.
Dr Mahathir also claimed that Perikatan Nasional (PN) had resorted to “buying” assemblymen to gain support.
“If this is how PN has chosen to stay in government, this means that the people of Sabah will lose their right to pick their state government.
“The prime minister (Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin) says he cares for Sabah, but if he really does, don’t steal the election from the people,” he said
Dr Mahathir stressed that this was also not the time to be indulging in politics based on party hopping.
“Instead, we should be focusing on overcoming the Covid-19 pandemic, the deteriorating economy and the Sabah people’s hardship.
“But because the state is facing an election, the Warisan-led government has to channel funds into focusing on the polls instead of helping those who have lost their jobs and don’t have enough food to eat,” he said.
He expressed hope that the Sabah people will vote for Warisan and all the parties who are contesting under the party’s logo, to ensure that they get the state government of their choice.
The Sabah state election was called after the Yang di-Pertua Negeri Tun Juhar Mahiruddin consented to caretaker Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal’s recommendation that the State Legislative Assembly be dissolved on July 30.
This came a day after former chief minister Tan Sri Musa Aman claimed to have the support of 33 assemblymen to topple the Warisan-led government and form a new administration.
Musa, however, will not be contesting the state elections after being excluded from Umno’s list of candidates.
Sabah heads to the polls on September 26.