KUALA LUMPUR, April 14 — Sabah Deputy Chief Minister III Datuk Shahelmey Yahya has no plans to appeal his six-year suspension from Umno for going against the party’s initial stand to withdraw support for Chief Minister Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor back in January.
Shahelmey, who also holds the state’s works portfolio, told reporters at a “buka puasa” event in George Town, Penang last night that he will abide by Umno’s decision, Malay daily Harian Metro reported last night.
“No… I will not be making an appeal. I will go through the six-year suspension,” he was quoted as saying.
The Putatan MP who is also Tanjung Keramat assemblyman was reportedly asked if he would join Parti Gagasan Rakyat Sabah (PGRS), the party helmed by Hajiji.
“I will inform everyone later,” he was quoted saying in reply.
Shahelmey is one of four other Umno elected representatives who had gone against the party’s stand to pull support for Hajiji, which resulted in the failed toppling of the ruling Gabungan Rakyat Sabah government last January.
The other three — Sugut assemblyman Datuk James Ratib, Tempasuk assemblyman Datuk Mohd Arsad Bistari, and Pantai Dalit assemblyman Datuk Jasnih Daya — have already quit Umno to join PGRS.
Umno, led by Kinabatangan MP Datuk Seri Bung Moktar Radin, tried to wrest control of the Sabah government with the help of former political rival Parti Warisan in January when Hajiji’s GRS was in the midst of transitioning away from Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia.
The ouster attempt failed when other parties in the coalition government opted to keep the status quo.
Bung then lost his position as a deputy chief minister when Hajiji reshuffled his state Cabinet in the aftermath.
Umno has since moved to mend its ties in Sabah, with president Datuk Seri Ahmad Zahid Hamidi saying earlier this month that his party will work with Hajiji to maintain the political stability until the next state election.