Kinabatangan MP Datuk Bung Moktar Radin is officially the new chief of Sabah UMNO after a mass exodus today, 12 December
Malaysiakini reported that he was appointed as the new chairperson of Sabah UMNO Liaison Committee after more than a dozen members exited the party today.
Bung's appointment was announced by UMNO secretary-general Tan Sri Annuar Musa in a special press conference held at PWTC earlier today.
Bung and former chief minister Tan Sri Musa Aman are the only MP and assemblyman left in the party
Malay Mail reported that nine assemblymen and four MPs from the party announced their decision to leave today, together with 21 division chiefs and two senators in the state.
Supreme council members Tan Sri Pandikar Amin and Datuk Seri Salleh Said Keruak also join the mass departure.
Former Sabah UMNO liaison chairman Datuk Hajiji Noor cited the lack of development and political direction from UMNO's central leaders as catalyst of the departure
"We (former UMNO members) are now party-less and will remain as independents until such a time when we decide to join the party of our choice," Hajiji was quoted as saying by Malaysiakini earlier today, before pledging their support for the Pakatan Harapan government.
Malay Mail reported Hajiji as saying that the group believes leaving a "political baggage" behind is the correct decision to allow "political renewal" for the state.
Meanwhile, Youth Chief Abdul Aziz Julkarnain denied that the exodus meant the end of Sabah UMNO
Malaysiakini reported him as saying that the speculation came from the party's political rivals.
"As for now, all 25 dicisions in the state are still intact and strong," Abdul Aziz said.
"In fact, the state UMNO is planning transformation efforts to ensure UMNO remains relevant at the grassroots level," he added.