KOTA KINABALU- Finding a win-win solution is key in the negotiations over seat allocations between Sabah UMNO and its Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) counterparts for the upcoming state election.
UMNO secretary-general Datuk Seri Ahmad Maslan said the matter needs to be resolved very soon to enable their election machinery to get cracking.
“There must be a win-win situation in the negotiations… not win-lose or lose-lose and most importantly, it must be done smoothly… in terms of which seat to be contested and the candidates as well.
“I hope the talks can be done soon, especially in terms of seat allocations. That is key, and only after that we (UMNO) will think about the candidates. All these need to be done quickly,” he said when met by Bernama after attending the Sabah UMNO political bureau meeting at the state UMNO office headquarters here today.
The meeting was chaired by Sabah Umno Chief Datuk Bung Moktar Radin.
Ahmad said he had been asked by UMNO President Datuk Seri Dr Ahmad Zahid Hamidi to monitor developments over the election, including to hold discussions with all 25 party division committees in the state.
On Saturday, Sabah Bersatu chief Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor said the party is prepared to contest 45 seats in the state election, while Bung Mokhtar said Sabah UMNO would defend all 32 of the seats that it contested in the previous general election. However, both state party chiefs also expressed willingness to hold discussions over seat allocations.
On the autonomy given to Sabah UMNO in preparing and determining its candidates for the state election, Ahmad said the task of nominating suitable candidates would be a huge responsibility for Bung Moktar.
On Thursday, Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal announced the dissolution of the state assembly, paving the way for a state election to be held within 60 days.
He made the announcement just hours after former chief minister Tan Sri Musa Aman claimed that the opposition bloc had secured a simple majority to form a new state government.