Two Independents ‘adopted’ by STAR

KOTA KINABALU: A twist is taking place in the main opposition front just two days after nomination.

At least two Independents are now being “adopted” as candidates by Sabah STAR, a member of Perikatan Nasional.

Kenny Chua, the controversial Independent candidate whose defection triggered the dissolution of the state legislative assembly, told reporters that the leadership of Sabah STAR under Datuk Jeffrey Kitingan and Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia had agreed to allow to him to campaign under the name of Perikatan.

Chua, who wore a Perikatan vest during a ceramah, was flanked by similarly attired supporters.

It is understood that Tandek candidate Datuk Anita Baranting, who was among those who crossed the floor last July, has also been “adopted” by Sabah STAR to contest as a Perikatan choice.

Jeffrey could not be reached for comment.

Chua’s announcement that he is a Perikatan choice puts him on a collision course with Parti Bersatu Sabah’s (PBS) Datuk William Majimbon for the Inanam seat.

The seat will see a massive 10-cornered fight, including Liberal Democratic Party’s Tan Sri Chong Kah Kiat, a former chief minister.

Anita is facing a six-cornered fight against Perikatan’s Parti Bersatu Rakyat Sabah Yillson Yanggun as well as PBS’ Hendrus Anding. Anita’s proposer and seconder were Sabah STAR’s Tandek division members.

According to Chua, it was agreed that 14 out of the 16 assemblymen who crossed the floor would be allowed to defend their seats.

However, he said PBS failed to keep to its side of the bargain and decided to field candidates clashing with Perikatan and Barisan Nasional.

“Not only did they go against their promise, they even challenged the president of Sabah STAR in Tambunan, ” he said, pointing out similar clashes in the seats Moyog, Kepayan, Tanjung Aru and Paginatan.

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