Chronology of Sabah politics from GE14


The Sabah State Assembly was dissolved today after the Yang Dipertua Negeri Tun Juhar Mahiruddin consented to the request made by Sabah Chief Minister Datuk Seri Mohd Shafie Apdal.

The following is a chronology of the political dynamics in the ‘Land Below the Wind’ that led to the dissolution:


May 9, 2018

  • Both Sabah Barisan Nasional (BN) and Parti Warisan Sabah (Warisan) along with its allies from Pakatan Harapan, win 29 seats apiece from the 60 seat state assembly in the 14th General Election (GE14).
  • The two remaining seats are won by Parti Solidariti Rakyat Sabah (STAR).


May 10, 2018

  • Sabah BN led by Tan Sri Musa Aman receive the support of the two STAR assemblymen, thus obtaining a simple majority with 31 votes that allows BN to form the government.
  • United Pasokmomogun Kadazandusun Murut Organisation(UPKO) announces its withdrawal from BN. However, four UPKO assemblymen remain in support of Musa as chief minister.
  • Musa is sworn in as Sabah chief minister.


May 11, 2018

  • Six BN state assemblymen leave BN and join Warisan in support of Mohd Shafie, who is also Warisan president, as chief minister.


May 12, 2018

  • Mohd Shafie is sworn in as the Sabah chief minister, 48 hours after Musa was sworn into office.


May 13, 2018

  • The Istana Negeri sends a letter to Musa through his private secretary informing the former that he is no longer the Sabah chief minister 


May 16, 2018

  • Mohd Shafie announces the Sabah state cabinet lineup with two nominated state assemblymen, namely Tuaran MP Datuk Wilfred Madius Tangau, who is also UPKO president, and former Sandakan MP, the late Datuk Stephen Wong, who was also the Sabah DAP chairman at the time.


May 17, 2018

  • Musa files a writ requesting the court to declare him as the legitimate chief minister.


June 11, 2018

  • Warisan’s secretary-general Loretto Padua Jr and treasurer Terence Siambun are appointed as nominated assemblymen


Sept 18, 2018

  • Libaran PKR division chief Jaffari Waliam is appointed as a nominated assemblyman.


Nov 7, 2018

  • The Kota Kinabalu High Court rules that Mohd Shafie’s appointment as the new Sabah Chief Minister is according to the constitution, and he is therefore the state’s rightful leader.
  • Musa’s lawyer says an appeal will be filed against the court ruling.


June 17, 2019

  • Sabah DAP treasurer Ronnie Loh Ee Eng is sworn in as a nominated assemblyman, replacing the late Datuk Stephen Wong, who passed away on March 28, 2019.


Nov 29, 2019

  • The Kota Kinabalu Court of Appeal dismisses with costs, Musa’s appeal against the rejection of his suit in challenging the validity of Mohd Shafie’s appointment as the legitimate Sabah chief minister.


May 15, 2020

  • Sabah government bloc assemblymen led by Deputy Chief Minister Datuk Seri Wilfred Madius Tangau express full support for Mohd Shafie to continue to lead the administration following rumors on social media claiming of a change in the state government by July this year.


June 11, 2020

  • Mohd Shafie holds a meeting with the Warisan MPs and assemblymen as well as other allies to discuss the political scenario and to pledge allegiance to the current leadership.


June 15, 2020

  • Two assemblymen from UPKO, namely Datuk Limus Jury and Datuk James Ratib announce their departure from the party with immediate effect, thus becoming independent assemblymen in support of the Perikatan Nasional Federal government.


July 21, 2020

  • Political discussion in Sabah over efforts to overthrow the Warisan-led state government heats up as Musa is said to have obtained a simple majority, with several assemblymen from the state government bloc said to have left their respective parties.


July 23, 2020

  • The political scene in Sabah calms down as assemblymen from the government bloc deny they have left their respective parties in support of Musa.


July 29, 2020

  • Musa claims to have obtained a simple majority to form the new state government through a coalition of several parties in the state.


July 30, 2020

  • Mohd Shafie announces the dissolution of the Sabah state assembly, paving way for state elections to be held within 60 days.