IN DULCET TONES, SHAFIES ISSUES A LAST WARNING TO MAHATHIR’S BERSATU: ‘WE ARE BROTHERS … SO NO NEED FOR BERSATU TO COME TO SABAH’

PARTI Warisan Sabah leader Mohd Shafie Apdal today reiterated his call for peninsula-based party Bersatu not to enter Sabah.

Shafie, who is also the state’s chief minister, said this had been the promise made by Bersatu chairman Dr Mahathir Mohamad before the 14th general election (GE14) last year.

“I have met Dr Mahathir and told him the best thing is that we already had an arrangement before GE14, and I hope it will continue until beyond the polls,” Shafie told reporters at the Tanjung Aru Chinese New Year Celebrations in Kota Kinabalu, today.

The Warisan president said the two parties were “brothers” and described Warisan’s presence in Sabah as being the same as if Bersatu had come to Sabah.

“The only difference is that Warisan is a multi-racial party while Bersatu is not.

“But still, Warisan has the support of the Bumiputera communities just like Bersatu,” Shafie said.

He made his remarks today following conflicting statements by some leaders about plans to set up the political party in Sabah.

These have included Parti Harapan Rakyat Sabah president Lajim Ukin and former Sabah Umno liaision chief Hajiji Mohd Noor, who has now quit Umno.

Last year, Bersatu president Muhyiddin Yassin, besides Dr Mahathir himself, said Bersatu will not set up a state chapter in Sabah.

But more recently, Bersatu secretary-general Marzuki Yahya told Malaysiakini that the party is now ready to spread its wings to Sabah.

Although Dr Mahathir had affirmed in December that Bersatu would not enter Sabah, just two days ago he said the decision was not final.

Shafie said Bersatu’s presence in Sabah was not necessary as the state’s politics had stabilised, with Warisan holding 45 out of 60 state seats.

“I hope, ‘boleh lah’, stick to what we have agreed upon. The problem of Sabah is best dealt with from the perspective of the state,” he said.

THE MALAYSIAN INSIGHT

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