PAIRIN. It is a household name. He was Chief Minister for Sabah for nine years. And as the story below said, he had been president of PBS for 23 years. May be it was the political tsunami that happened during the March 8 general elections. It could be that party members are now expecting more. Kiulu started the ball rolling. In which court is the ball now?
Call for Pairin to quit
By Ruben Sario.
KOTA KINABALU: Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) Datuk Joseph Pairin Kitingan appears to be facing dissent within the party he founded 23 years ago with a division chief calling for him to step down from the post.
Other senior PBS officials however quickly dismissed the call by Kiulu division chief Sindin Ranggongon saying that “there was no hurry” for a leadership change in the party.
“There is no reason for Pairin to make way as yet. And I'm sure the various leaders can wait for their turn at the helm,” said PBS Information Chief Johnny Mositun.
He said Pairin's leadership was still needed in the party “and this is the status until Pairin feels otherwise.”
Sindin was quoted in a local newspaper here as saying that Pairin, the Huguan Siou or Kadazandusun paramount leader, should make way for others who had more energy, calibre and charisma.
He said Pairin's obvious successor was PBS deputy president Datuk Dr Maximus Ongkili, the Science, Technology and Innovation Minister.
He said this was the general sentiment among the Kiulu PBS division members at their recent meeting.
Sindin said a leadership change in PBS was needed as support for the party had been diminishing which was indicated in a decline in the number of votes the party's candidates had received in the March 2008 polls which also saw two candidates being defeated.
He also alleged that Pairin, a Deputy Chief Minister and Rural Development Minister, practised favouritism such as in choices of the party's candidates and appointments to key government posts.
Pairin set up PBS in March 1985 soon after being nudged out of the then ruling Parti Berjaya. He became Sabah's seventh chief minister after PBS defeated Berjaya in the same year.
Just before the 1990 general election, Pairin made the decision to pull PBS out of Barisan Nasional paving the way for Umno's entry into Sabah. Four years later, PBS lost the reins of the state government to Barisan.
In 2002, the party was re-admitted into the ruling coalition. THE STAR