Kota Marudu Member of Parliament

PBS announces new line-up amid reform efforts

KOTA KINABALU: PBS new president Maximus Ongkili today announced a mix of experienced politicians and newcomers to the party’s Supreme Council as it continues its reform efforts.

Speaking after chairing the party’s supreme council meeting in Penampang today, Ongkili said the new faces, comprising mainly young people, made up about 40% of the party’s new leadership line-up.

“This combination of leaders has shown promising leadership talents and contributions and they will be able to inject new ideas and help PBS reach greater heights,” he said.

Chairing the Supreme Council meeting was Ongkili’s first task after taking over from party founder and outgoing president Joseph Pairin Kitingan during the party’s annual delegates congress a couple of weeks ago.

Pairin, who led the party for 33 years, has since been made premier adviser.

PBS three deputy presidents are Radin Malleh, Yee Moh Chai and Senator Jamilah Sulaiman; while Tandek assemblyman Anita Baranting and Christopher Mandut were elected as the party’s Women and Youth chiefs, respectively.

Tamparuli assemblyman Jahid Jahim is the party’s secretary-general and he will be assisted by Matunggong assemblyman, Julita Majungki.

The treasurer-general is Lu Kim Yen who is assisted by John Chryso Masabal while Kiulu assemblyman Joniston Bangkuai is the party’s information chief.

Ongkili also announced the setting up of the PBS Council of Eminent Leaders which will function as the party’s advisory council to generate proposals and programmes towards the betterment of the party. It is headed by Pairin and co-chaired by Michael Asang.

The new-look PBS also set up eight bureaus, namely administration and finance, and the Malaysia Agreement 1963 and Sabah rights bureaus, both to be headed by Ongkili; discipline, and illegal immigrants and foreign workers (Radin); research and training (Jahim); membership drive and database (Mositun); law and legal matters (Yee); and youth and women (Jamilah).

Ongkili said the new line-up would be sworn in on Dec 7, adding that several appointments to fill vacant posts would be made in due course.

“It is my hope that this new line-up will work together to strengthen the struggle of PBS, go down to the ground to meet the people and ensure that our programmes are carried out to include the grassroots level besides assisting in recruitment in new memberships.

“Let us work together and stay united. We have gone a long way, thanks to the leadership and guidance from our former president. Let us make PBS great again as we offer the party to Malaysians in Sabah to champion their interests, rights and basic needs,” he said.

PBS is one of four parties that form the local opposition bloc Gabungan Bersatu Sabah (GBS) which also includes Sabah Umno, Parti Solidariti Tanah Airku (STAR) and Parti Bersatu Rakyat Sabah (PBRS).

The party has received intense criticism in the past as many accused Pairin of not giving opportunities to young people despite having many talented and passionate young leaders.