KUALA LUMPUR, Nov 15 — Perikatan Nasional (PN) chairman Tan Sri Muhyiddin Yassin today stressed that he understood Sabah politics quite well as he had been involved in the state’s political affairs for more than 40 years.

He said therefore, he also understood very well the sensitivities involved as well.

“To say I do not understand Sabah politics is not quite right also. During the time (when) I was Prime Minister, I formed the special ministry of Sabah and Sarawak and tackled major issues that fulfilled obligations under MA63 (Malaysia Agreement 1963),” he told reporters after chairing PN supreme council Meeting here yesterday.

He was commenting on local media that quoted Gabungan Rakyat Sabah (GRS) chairman Datuk Seri Hajiji Noor as dismissing Muhyiddin’s views on the seat allocation for Beluran, saying that the politics in Sabah was a ‘bit different’ and unique.

Defending Bersatu vice president Datuk Seri Dr Ronald Kiandee’s decision to contest the Beluran parliamentary seat in the 15th general election (GE15) under the PN ticket, Muhyiddin said the decision is fair and reasonable

“We have to save him (Ronald) from all the treatment he is facing in Sabah by offering him PN’s ticket and at least give him a chance for him to stand. I think I acted fairly and reasonably to protect not only Ronald’s, but also PN’s position,” he added.

Ronald was dropped from the line-up of GRS candidates fielded in GE15 and in a bid to defend the Beluran seat, the incumbent MP is contesting under a PN ticket in a five-cornered fight, facing Benedict Asmat (BN), Rowiena Rasid (Warisan), Hausing Samsudin @ Sudin (Pejuang) and Felix Joseph Saang (PH).

GRS, which consists of Bersatu, PBS, Parti Solidariti Tanah Airku (STAR), Sabah Progressive Party (SAPP) and Usno, governs Sabah along with Barisan Nasional (BN).

However, Bersatu, STAR and SAPP, together with PAS and Gerakan are component parties that form the PN coalition.

Meanwhile, in Paitan (Sabah), Ronald said he was confident that Beluran residents can see, feel and appreciate all his contributions and service throughout his time as a five-term MP there since 1999.

Therefore, he said based on his track record, he made the decision to defend his seat.

“In the past two years, through the Agriculture and Food Industries Ministry, of which I am the minister, various projects have been undertaken which has benefited Beluran residents.

“My service record as an elected representative has been my main priority and purpose that I have not neglected. I am confident Beluran residents know and appreciate what I’ve done all this while,” he told reporters after meeting voters in Kampung Dalamas near here today. — Bernama