By : KG PUBLICIST
RANAU : A former secondary school principal from State Reform Party (STAR) is poised to take on veteran Masidi Manjun in Keranaan, Ranau. Jalibin Paidi, 44, (right) who quit as principal of SMK Entilibon last year is said to have been given the nod as STAR candidate for Keranaan.
STAR Sabah chairman, Jeffrey Kitingan, is scheduled to announce STAR's full list on Thursday (April 18) to coincide with the launching of the party's manifesto in Kota Kinabalu.
Also likely to be in the fray for Keranaan is Jalibin's former boss the Sabah Education director, Muhidin Yusin, who only days ago joined Peninsular-based opposition Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR).
Muhidin's possibility to be picked up by PKR as candidate despite his late entry however is said to have caused discontent within already fractious PKR.
Jalibin on the other hand has been campaigning under NGO United Borneo Front (UBF) for over one year and now is immensely popular in Ranau, riding on the STAR popular cry "Ini Kali Lah" and Jeffrey's struggles coined under Borneo Agenda. He is already posing a worry to Masidi in his traditional strongholds.
So far, Jalibin had not encountered any resistance from the largely Dusun community in the area, and in fact had been drawing support and strength both from the ordinary folks to those in the public sector and business sectors alike.
The plus point for a BN in Keranaan, as in many other areas, is the failure of opposition parties to have a consolidated candidate to take on BN.
Confident Jalibin, however, said the people would see the difference of STAR agenda's from those Peninsular parties of BN and Pakatan Rakyat once STAR Manifesto is launched.
"I am confident the people will chose STAR as we fight for the return of Sabah glory as autonomous state with special rights within the country," he said.