KOTA KINABALU: Former Sabah chief minister Tan Sri Musa Aman is claiming that he has the numbers to form a new state government, after weeks of political manoeuvring.
However, he stopped short of saying the actual numbers he has in hand, only claiming that he had a “simple majority” to take over the state government from Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal, whose coalition government currently holds 45 seats in the 60 member house.
Speaking to reporters at a hurriedly called press conference at his Seri Anggerik residence in Luyang here, Musa said: “The TYT (Yang Di-Pertua Negeri) has asked me to come up with the relevant statutory declarations to confirm the support of the assemblymen.”
Musa, the Sungai Sibuga assemblymen, will need a total of 33 assemblymen to obtain a simple majority in the house.
Based on a headcount, there were 32 assemblymen, including Musa during the press conference.
At least 12 assemblymen from the ruling state government have crossed over from Warisan, DAP, Upko and PKR.
Among those seen were Datuk Abidin Madingkir (Upko-Paginatan), Ronnie Loh (Sabah DAP nominated assemblyman), Kenny Chua (PKR-Inanam) and remaining were Warisan’s Datuk Anita Baranting (Tandek), Osman Jamal (Balung), Datuk Bolkiah Ismail (Pitas), Datuk Hamisa Samad (Tanjung Batu), Datuk Musbah Jamlee (Tempasuk), Datuk Muis Picho (Sebatik) Datuk Masiung Banah (Kuamut) and Datuk Abdul Rahman Kongkawan (Labuk).
Musa is leading the Perikatan Nasional opposition front, with 20 assemblymen – nine Bersatu, four Parti Bersatu Sabah, three Sabah STAR, one Umno and three independents- and needs defections of at least 13 assemblymen.
It was not clear if the numbers have reached 33 for Musa as the situation is set to develop further with political manoeuvres from Shafie are also expected as he tries to hold on to his government.
Shafie, whose current government has 45 assemblymen, has not immediately responded to the development though in the recent past most the assemblymen had come out publicly to support Shafie to remain.
In announcing his claim to lay stake on the state government, Musa thanked all those who have stood “by me consistently all this while".
“I do not expect anything except for commitment and dedication from all the elected representatives in serving the people, ” he said.
He also said that he would work with the Federal Government to bring the state out of its economic downturn as a result of the Warisan government administration and the Covic-19 pandemic.
Musa said earlier on Wednesday (July 29) morning, Home Minister Datuk Hamzah Zainuddin had met with Yang Di-Pertua Negeri Tun Juhar Mahiruddin to inform him that a new group of assemblymen had the numbers.
He said he had contacted Juhar who has asked him to provide statutory declarations of the assemblymen.
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