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Thursday, May 17, 2018

Shafie an ‘unlawful CM’, says former Sabah AG

Former state AG, Herman Luping slams move to appoint Warisan president as chief minister after 'horse trading which led to defections'.

PETALING JAYA - A former attorney-general in Sabah has criticised the appointment of Warisan president Shafie Apdal as chief minister, calling it a mockery of democracy.

Herman James Luping, who was also a Sabah deputy chief minister in the 1970s, said the state now has an “unlawful chief minister, who has forced his way into office using underhanded means”.

“This is exactly what we have fought against in the past.

“The very people who claimed to uphold democracy in their campaign during the 14th general election (GE14) are now going against their word,” Luping said in a statement.

He added that Sabah Barisan Nasional chairman Musa Aman was sworn in as chief minister on the night of May 10, at 11pm, according to the state constitution.

“His swearing-in was done after much delay, despite the fact that Musa had informed the Istana Negeri that he had the majority of 31 seats as early at 12.30am.

“This was just a few hours after all the results came in on the night of May 9, when the election was held.

“The election process was carried out and the 29 BN candidates and two from STAR had the simple majority to form a government.”

According to Luping, Sabah BN had wanted the swearing-in done at 10am on May 10.

“Unfortunately, such a request was met with resistance and this had caused an unwarranted delay.

“The delay allowed for a large amount of horse trading which led to defections,” he said referring to leaders from Upko, a Sabah BN party, negotiating with Warisan.

Eventually, a total of six BN assemblymen from Umno and Upko left the former ruling coalition to pledge their support for Shafie as the new chief minister.

With a new majority of 35 seats against BN’s 25, based on the support of elected reps, Shafie was sworn in as chief minister on Saturday, May 12.

“With all the defections from BN, Warisan now stakes its immoral claim to form the new state government,” Luping said.

Aside from Upko, two other Sabah parties — LDP and PBRS — have since left BN and declared their intention to join the Warisan-Pakatan Harapan coalition. - FMT

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