KOTA KINABALU: Parti Warisan Sabah president Datuk Mohd Shafie Apdal is ready for an Opposition pact with reliable partners but is standing firm against tying up with those he believe are leaning towards the ruling Barisan Nasional.
“Our doors are still open. We do realise that we (Opposition) have to be clear on our stand,” said the former Umno vice-president, who quit the party to form Warisan.
Speaking to reporters after a Kaamatan fund-raising dinner on Wednesday here, Shafie said his party alone could not take on the Barisan but needed to work with other parties to mount a challenge to the ruling government.
However, he said that any deal with other parties would depend on their loyalty towards the Opposition cause, as he feared that some political parties might be BN-friendly.
“I know we can’t do it alone but our concern is that if these Barisan-friendly Opposition parties win the seats, they might jump to Barisan.
“It will be a betrayal of trust of the people,” he said in response to political pundit prediction that the Opposition in Sabah was too weak to take on the Barisan led by Chief Minister Datuk Musa Aman.
Shafie hinted that he was all right with Opposition parties like national-based PKR and DAP, and also Parti Cinta Sabah (PCS) as they were consistently firm in their role as opponents to Barisan.
However, he did not make any reference to the four-party Sabah-based Opposition alliance, Gabungan Sabah.
It is an open secret that Shafie is not keen to work with Sabah STAR president Datuk Dr Jeffrey Kitingan, Sabah Progressive Party president Datuk Yong Teck Lee and Parti Harapan Rakyat Sabah president Datuk Lajim Ukin, who are part of Gabungan Sabah or United Sabah Alliance.
Shafie said he was aware of feedback from the ground that Warisan might not be able to effectively serve the people in certain areas compared with other local parties.
Shafie said irrespective of the number of seats they win in the next elections, they were prepared to sit firmly in the Opposition and not team up with Barisan.