Sabah Bersatu quitters to join new party PGRS? Masidi says sorting out prelims, announcement at ‘right time’


Masidi remained tight-lipped on if the 19 federal and state lawmakers who left Bersatu will be joining a little-known party called Parti Gagasan Rakyat Sabah. — Bernama photo

KUALA LUMPUR (Dec 11): An announcement regarding the status of the Sabah MPs and assemblymen who quit Bersatu will be made when the time is right, Gabungan Rakyat Sabah (GRS) secretary-general Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun said today.

Masidi, who is also Second Finance Minister, refused to confirm or deny rumours that the 19 federal and state lawmakers who left Bersatu will be joining a little-known party called Parti Gagasan Rakyat Sabah (PGRS).

“Will make announcement if and when necessary and at the right time. We are sorting out all the preliminaries first,” Masidi told Malay Mail when contacted.

Local dailies The Star and Free Malaysia Today had earlier today cited unnamed sources saying Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor will be leading a state-based party with no ties to any national party and that it will become the new core of the ruling Gabungan Rakyat Sabah (GRS) coalition.

PGRS was said to be formed in 2013 but had been dormant after the September 2020 state election in which it had contested in 28 out of 79 state seats and lost all.

The Sabah chapter of Bersatu crumbled when Hajiji, who was its chief, left with 18 others last week, with Masidi citing the rise of “political Islam” as their reason.

Hajiji did something similar 45 months ago in April 2019 when he took Sabah Umno members to join Bersatu.

Four Sabah MPs won the 15th general election under the GRS ticket.

Two of them, Papar MP Datuk Armizan Mohd Ali is now minister in the Prime Minister’s Department (Sabah and Sarawak Affairs) while Batu Sapi MP Khairul Firdaus Akbar Khan is deputy minister of tourism, arts and culture in the federal government led by Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim.

The other two Sabah MPs who exited Bersatu are Datuk Matbali Musah (Sipitang) dan Datuk Jonathan Yassin (Ranau).

The state assemblymen who exited Bersatu are: Hajiji (Sulaman), Datuk Isnin Aliasnih (Klias), Datuk Fairuz Renddan (Pintasan), Datuk Seri Masidi Manjun (Karanaan), Datuk Ghulam Haidar Khan Bahadar (Kawang) dan Datuk Mohd Arifin Mohd Arif (Membakut), Datuk Rubin Balang (Kemabong), Samad Jambri (Labuk), Datuk Nizam Abu Bakar Titingan (Apas), Datuk Hassan A Gani Pg Amir (Sebatik), Datuk Ruddy Awah (Pitas), Abdul Ghani Mohamed Yassin (Nabawan), Datuk Amisah Yassin (appointed) and Jaffari Walliam (appointed). — Malay Mail