Friday, May 3, 2013

GE13: BN makes final push in Sabah’s grey seats

At least eight parliamentary and 15 state seats identified as grey in Sabah are the focus of Barisan Nasional's last 24-hour push to ensure a convincing victory.
Barisan sources are they were confident of securing more than two-thirds of the 60 state seats as the party workers were staying awake knocking on all doors to persuade the voters but the worry over internal sabotage was there.
They did not rule out the possibility of the voters picking Barisan for state and given parliament to the Opposition in some areas.
The divided Opposition of Pakatan Rakyat and local based Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP) and State Reform Party (STAR) might be able to spring surprises in several seats dubbed grey and black by Barisan war room.
“You have an Opposition ground swell but it could move three ways giving Barisan an advantage in some areas but could work in favour of the Opposition in certain areas.
“Uncommitted Barisan voters might tip the balance towards any of the Opposition parties,” said a Barisan leader on Friday.
One parliamentary seat in the black is Beaufort defended by PKR's Datuk Lajim Ukin who won it under Umno in 2008 elections and Sabah Umno was doing all it could to bring it back into Barisan's grasp.
Barisan is also doubling its efforts to turn to white, the dark seats of two federal ministers Tan Sri Bernard Dompok (Penampang) and Datuk Seri Dr Maximus Ongkili (Kota Marudu).
Dompok, the Upko president and Dr Maximus, the deputy president of Parti Bersatu Sabah, are facing stiff multi-cornered challenges from PKR candidates though splits with other Opposition votes might see them through.
Two other leaders out of the woods by late Friday were Parti Bersatu Sabah president Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan in Keningau and Tambunan state seats and also Parti Bersatu Rakyat Sabah (PBRS) president Tan Sri Joseph Kurup.
Among other parliamentary seats dubbed grey but still within reach of the ruling coalition were Kota Kinabalu, Sandakan, Tawau, Ranau and Tawau.
For state seats where Barisan was more or less confident of keeping 40 seats, at least 15 are in the black and grey categories.
Placed under grey were the seats of three state cabinet minister Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Yee Moh Chai in Api Api, State Tourism and Environment Minister Datuk Masidi Manjun in Karanan and Industrial Development Minister Datuk Raymond Tan.The grey included Lahad Datu, Sukau, Bingkor,Kundasang and Kapayan.
The black state seats, according Barisan officials, were Matunggong, Kadaiman Inanam, Likas Moyog, Klias, Lumadan, Paginatan and Sri Tanjung.

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