KUANTAN, Sept 27 — The win by Gabungan Rakyat Sabah (GRS) in yesterday’s Sabah election should not be an issue although the coalition is not yet registered, said Indera Mahkota Member of Parliament Datuk Saifuddin Abdullah.
Saifuddin, who is Minister of Communications and Multimedia, said this was because GRS, which secured 38 seats in the election, was represented by candidates from registered parties, namely Perikatan Nasional (PN), Barisan Nasional (BN) and Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS).
“This situation is similar to when Pakatan Harapan (PH) won the 14th General Election (GE14) because at that time, PH was a coalition name and it was not yet registered then, but all their candidates are contesting using the registered party symbol which is PKR.
“So there is no difference between the position of GRS and PH. Candidates who contested for PH used the PKR symbol and GRS candidates also used the registered party symbols. This is an election strategy,” he told reporters after attending the “Mengacau Bubur Asyura” (Asyura Porridge Making) programme here today.
He said this is response to claims by some quarters that no parties won with absolute majority in yesterday’s Sabah election, although GRS obtained a simple majority as it was allegedly not recognised by the Election Commission (EC) as a registered coalition.
In the election yesterday, the Election Commission (EC) announced GRS, comprising PN, BN, and PBS, won 38 of the 73 state seats, while Warisan Plus (consisting of Warisan, DAP, Amanah, UPKO and PKR) with 32 state seats, and the remaining three seats were won by the Independent candidates.
Saifuddin also said he was confident of parties in GRS resolving the appointment for the Chief Minister’s post among them.
“The Chief Minister is appointed from among the state assemblymen who have the support of the majority but usually there will be negotiations. That is why, during PH, Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad was appointed Prime Minister even though Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) is not the party with the most seats,” he added. — Bernama