Pandikar reviving Parti Akar to re-launch his political career

KOTA KINABALU: Former Dewan Rakyat Speaker Tan Sri Pandikar Amin Mulia (pic) is planning to revive his disbanded Angkatan Keadilan Rakyat Bersatu, known then as Parti Akar to re-launch his political career.

The veteran Sabah politician said he was not planning to apply and join PKR as widely speculated or take over USNO, which was initially on the cards after Parti Pribumi Bersatu Sabah showed little signs of accepting him into the party.

“I will lead a local party. I am reviving Akar with a new line-up.

“Most of them will be new and young leaders while the remaining 30% will be experienced leaders,” he said.

“Done. Now just wait for the announcement,” Pandikar said when asked if he had sought to re-register Akar.

In 2001, Pandikar had dissolved Parti Akar (then a Barisan Nasional component party), which then saw its members joining Umno en mass in Sabah.

Akar was formed by a breakaway faction of Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) that was led by Datuk Mark Koding in 1989.

PBS was then the ruling state government under Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan.

Akar became a Barisan component party after PBS left Barisan in 1990.

Pandikar is now president of the ethnic based non-governmental organisation United Sabah Bajau Organisation (Usbo) – taking over from former president Datuk Seri Salleh Said Keruak, who became Usbo’s adviser.

During Usbo’s Malaysia Day celebration in Kota Belud, both Salleh and Pandikar pledged their support for PKR president Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim to be the next Prime Minister after Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad steps down.

Over the weekend Salleh confirmed that he had applied to join PKR.

Local party leaders raised their concerns over his bid to become a member, though Anwar said that the political bureau would study his application.

During the gathering, Pandikar also held a ceremony with Anwar to strengthen their ties after a turbulent past political relationship.

This in turn led to further speculation that the former Dewan Rakyat Speaker might also be joining PKR.

When asked about the ceremony at the beach, he replied; “Politics lah kan? But the understanding from the beginning was that I won’t join PKR”.

Pandikar and Salleh were among top Sabah Umno leaders led by Datuk Seri Hajiji Mohd Noor to leave the party.

However, the two were not taken in when Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia spread its wings to Sabah in April this year.

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Pandikar Amin Mulia


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