Joseph Kurup Not Contesting in GE14, Passing Political Baton to Son

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Veteran Sabah politician Tan Sri Joseph Kurup is taking his first step towards retirement by not be contesting in GE14.

The Parti Bersatu Rakyat Sabah (PBRS) president passed on his Pensiangan parliamentary seat to his son Arthur.

The 74-year-old Kurup, who has not relinquished any party posts, said that it was high time for him to retire after 33 years in politics.

He believes that his 36-year-son Arthur is the new face of the next generation of politicians.

“It is high time for veteran politicians like me to make way for younger leaders,” he said, adding that Arthur has the required vision for the future.

The PBRS deputy president, Arthur was named as Barisan Nasional’s candidate for Pensiangan while incumbent Sook assemblyman Datuk Elron Angin was retained.

Kurup, who joined Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) led by Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan in 1985, is among the few Sabah politicians to survive the rough and tumble of state politics, and stayed in government for 33 years.

At the fall of the PBS government in 1994, he took over the newly-formed PBRS, and remained in the state government, holding various ministerial positions until 2008, despite electoral defeats.

Kurup moved to the Pensiangan parliamentary seat and was made deputy minister before being promoted to Minister in Prime Minister’s Department in 2013.

He has also survived several internal party challenges – both in PBS and PBRS.

Meanwhile, Upko is placing its hopes on political greenhorn Ceaser Mandeal Malakun, 27, to regain the Penampang parliament seat held by its former president Tan Sri Bernard Dompok, who was defeated by PKR in 2013.

Upko Youth leader Ewon Benedick, 35, will contest the Kadamaian seat and former Kota Kinabalu mayor Datuk Abidin Madingkir will contest the Paginatan seat left vacant after the death of Datuk Siringan Gubat earlier this year.

Upko acting president Datuk Seri Madius Tangau, who is defending his Tuaran parliamentary seat, said that they were contesting three parliamentary and seven state seats. – The Star