Jeffrey Kitingan

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Jeffrey Kitingan

Jeffrey Kitingan.jpg
Opposition Leader of the Sabah State Legislative Assembly
Assumed office
12 May 2018
GovernorJuhar Mahiruddin
Chief MinisterShafie Apdal
Preceded byShafie Apdal
Member of the Malaysian Parliament
for Keningau
Assumed office
10 May 2018
Preceded byJoseph Pairin Kitingan
Majority45 (2018)
Member of the Sabah State Legislative Assembly
for Tambunan
Assumed office
10 May 2018
Preceded byJoseph Pairin Kitingan
Majority1,037 (2018)
Member of the Sabah State Legislative Assembly
for Bingkor
In office
6 May 2013 – 9 May 2018
Preceded byJustin Guka
Succeeded byRobert Nordin
Personal details
Born (1948-10-22) 22 October 1948 (age 71)
Kota Marudu, Crown Colony of North Borneo (now Sabah, Malaysia)
Political partyPBS (1990–1994; 1996–2000)[1]
AKAR (1994–1996)[1]
PBRS (2000–2002)[1]
UMNO (2003)
PKR (2006–2011)[2][3][4]
STAR Sabah branch (2012–2016)[5]
STAR (2016–)[6]
RelationsJoseph Pairin Kitingan (brother)
Maximus Ongkili (nephew)
Alma materHarvard University

Datuk Dr. Jeffrey Gapari Kitingan is a politician from the state of Sabah in Malaysia. He was born in the town of Kota Marudu and graduated from Harvard University (John F. Kennedy School of Government).[7] His brother, Tan Sri Datuk Sri Panglima Joseph Pairin Kitingan, is also a politician and a former Chief Minister of Sabah. Jeffrey has been referred as political "frog" (katak in Malay) for his penchant of party hopping throughout his political career.[1][8] Jeffrey responded by saying that party hopping has been the common practice in Sabah politics.[9] He defended himself that he switch parties in order to find the one that is suitable to fight for the rights of the Sabah people.[6]

Political career[edit]

He is known to be a controversial politician, having been detained without trial under the infamous Internal Security Act by the Barisan Nasional-controlled federal government on suspicion of plotting to secede Sabah from the federation of Malaysia, although his defenders argue that his was a politically motivated move.[7][10]

He is also known to have switched political parties a number of times. In 1990, he started his political career together with his brother Joseph Pairin Kitingan in Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS). However, after the 1994 state election, he abandoned his brother and PBS to join Parti Angkatan Keadilan Rakyat (AKAR), leading to the downfall of the PBS government in Sabah. He tried to climb to the top post of the AKAR party but failed and rejoined PBS in 1996. However, in 2000, he quit PBS again and joined Parti Bersatu Rakyat Sabah (PBRS), tried to take over the party but failed again.[11] He then quit the PBRS party in 2002 and tried to join United Pasokmomogun Kadazandusun Murut Organisation (UPKO). However, he quickly withdrew his membership application from UPKO and tried to join back PBS again for the third time, but PBS did not welcome him back into the party. In 2003, he applied to join the United Malays National Organisation (UMNO) twice: one through UMNO headquarters in Kuala Lumpur, but was rejected. He then applied another membership through UMNO Keningau branch in Sabah using his legal name "Gapari bin Kitingan @ Geoffrey Kitingan" and was mistakenly accepted by UMNO. Jeffrey was able to produce his UMNO membership card. However, once the UMNO supreme council realised their error, they immediately revoked Jeffrey's membership.[11][12][13] Jeffrey remained partyless until he was accepted into Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) in 2006 where he became the vice-president of the party.[2] He resigned his vice-president post in 2009 but remained as a party member.[3] In December 2010, Jeffrey founded a NGO named United Borneo Alliance (UBA), which aimed to strive the rights of Sabah and Sarawak in accordance to 20-point agreement and Malaysia Agreement.[14] He finally quit the PKR party in January 2011.[4] In 2012, Jeffrey launched the Sabah chapter of Sarawak based State Reform Party (STAR).[5] In October 2015, he brought his UBA into United Sabah Alliance (USA).[15] In 2016, he brought his Sabah chapter out of the Sarawak-based STAR to establish a Sabah based party named Homeland Solidarity Party (STAR).[6]

In the 2008 general election, he challenged his brother Tan Sri Datuk Seri Panglima Joseph Pairin from BN-PBS at the Keningau parliamentary constituency, but lost. Instead he won the Sabah State Legislative constituency of Bingkor.[16]

2018 state election decision maker and subsequent results[edit]

Following the 2018 general election, the BN and the coalition of Pakatan Harapan (PH) with Sabah Heritage Party (WARISAN) are tied up with 29-29 seats in the 2018 Sabah state election.[17] Jeffrey with his party of Homeland Solidarity Party (STAR) under the United Sabah Alliance (USA) which are not aligned from either the two sides, has won two seats in the election and subsequently emerged as the decision maker for the formation of a state government from the two sides.[18] He then decide to team up with the BN to form coalition state government with him appointed as a Deputy Chief Minister while Musa Aman from BN continue to become the Chief Minister for another 5 years under the new coalition government.[19] His decision to maintain the position of BN in Sabah then drew many criticism from Sabahan residents who want to see a change under the administration of a new state government with many began to labelling him as a "traitor" towards the state,[20] especially when he was once a staunch opposition towards BN rule before the election.[20] It is also reported that before the election, Jeffrey has been issue with 7-days bankruptcy notice.[21] Following his sudden decision to work with BN, the Sabah branch of PKR has urged the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC) to probe the two individuals, citing a “possibility of money changing hands between the two” that could leading to a sudden political partnership.[22] Following the complaint, Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad has announced that they will not recognise the election in Sabah if corruption involved.[23] Situation also change when six seats assemblymen from the BN allied party of UPKO switched their allegiance to WARISAN, giving the Shafie Apdal party an advantage with 35 seats which sufficient to establish a valid state government.[24] In addition, the Sabah Yang di-Pertua Negeri (TYT) Juhar Mahiruddin also had requested Musa to step down from his position,[25][26] as Musa current position has contravened the Article 7(1) of the Sabah State Constitution when he lost the total majority state seats.[27][28] On 14 May 2018, a letter from TYT are being delivered to Musa residence which stating that he is no longer the Chief Minister effective from 12 May 2018.[29][30]

Election results[edit]

Parliament of Malaysia[31][32]
Year Constituency Government Votes Pct Opposition Votes Pct
1995 Bandau Jeffrey Kitingan (AKAR) 5,851 35% Maximus Ongkili (PBS) 10,716 63%
2008 Keningau Joseph Pairin Kitingan (PBS) 14,598 56.2% Jeffrey Kitingan (PKR) 10,334 39.8%
2013 Joseph Pairin Kitingan (PBS) 15,818 43.8% Jeffrey Kitingan (STAR) 11,900 33.0%
2018 Daniel Kinsik (PBS) 12,742 24.9%2 Jeffrey Kitingan (STAR) 13,286 26.0%2
Jake Nointin (WARISAN) 13,241 25.9%2
Table excludes votes for candidates who finished in third place or lower.
2 Different % used for 2018 election.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b c d Chin, Kin Wah (2004). Southeast Asian Affairs 2004. Institute of Southeast Asian Studies. p. 157. ISBN 9789812302380. Retrieved 10 May 2018. Jeffrey's political career is typical of what Sabahans referred to as katak (frog)
  2. ^ a b Tony, Thien (14 October 2006). "Jeffrey Kitingan speaks up as new PKR man". Malaysiakini. Archived from the original on 1 December 2006. Retrieved 10 May 2018.
  3. ^ a b "PKR Sabah rocked as VP Jeffrey quits". The Sun Daily. 28 October 2009. Archived from the original on 3 August 2017. Retrieved 10 May 2018.
  4. ^ a b Hisyamuddin, Ayub (4 January 2011). "Jeffrey sah keluar PKR (Jeffrey confirmed to quit PKR)" (in Malay). Utusan Malaysia. Archived from the original on 10 May 2018. Retrieved 10 May 2018.
  5. ^ a b "Jeffrey Kitingan to Launch STAR Sabah". The Star (Malaysia). 4 January 2012. Archived from the original on 10 May 2018. Retrieved 10 May 2018.
  6. ^ a b c "Jeffrey ends his party-hopping days with STAR approval". The Star (Malaysia). 14 July 2016. Archived from the original on 10 May 2018. Retrieved 10 May 2018.
  7. ^ a b Marion B. Gammill (10 February 1992). "Kennedy School Graduate Held Prisoner". The Harvard Crimson. Archived from the original on 11 October 2007. Retrieved 14 May 2018.
  8. ^ Ung, Ho Chin (1999). Regime change and regime maintenance in Asia and Pacific - Discussion paper No 24 - "Kataks", Kadazan-Dusun nationalism and development: The 1999 Sabah state election (PDF). Australia: The Department of Political and Social Change - Research School of Pacific and Asian Studies The Australian National University. p. 15. Archived from the original (PDF) on 10 May 2018. Retrieved 10 May 2018. The more prominent Kataks prior to the elections are listed below
  9. ^ Luke, Rintod (26 June 2012). "'We are all frogs, even Musa and Pairin'". Free Malaysia Today. Archived from the original on 22 December 2012. Retrieved 11 May 2018.
  10. ^ "MALAYSIA, Human Rights Undermined: Restrictive Laws in a Parliamentary Democracy", Amnesty International. Accessed 20 March 2007.
  11. ^ a b James, Chin (2004). SABAH AND SARAWAK The More Things Change the More They Remain the Same. Singapore: Institute of Southeast Asian studies. Retrieved 11 May 2018. With such a colourful track record, it was no surprise that Sabah UMNO refused to take him, ...
  12. ^ "Adnan: Jeffrey not an Umno member". The Star (Malaysia). 29 May 2003. Archived from the original on 10 May 2018. Retrieved 10 May 2018.
  13. ^ "Umno rejects Jeffrey's application". The Star (Malaysia). 6 June 2003. Archived from the original on 11 May 2008. Retrieved 11 May 2018.
  14. ^ "Jeffrey Kitingan forms United Borneo Front to get more for Sabah, Sarawak". Bernama. The Star. 16 December 2010. Archived from the original on 17 December 2010. Retrieved 27 April 2012.
  15. ^ "Opposition parties form United Sabah Alliance". Daily Express. 10 March 2015. Archived from the original on 13 April 2018. Retrieved 12 May 2018.
  16. ^ "Malaysia elections: Opposition wave fails to win Sabah". The Star/Asia News Network. AsiaOne. 6 May 2013. Retrieved 13 January 2016.
  17. ^ Muguntan Vanar; Fatimah Zainal (10 May 2018). "Hung assembly in Sabah sees intense political horse-trading". The Star. Retrieved 11 May 2018.
  18. ^ Alyaa Azhar (10 May 2018). "Hung assembly in Sabah, Star to be kingmaker". Malaysiakini. Retrieved 11 May 2018.
  19. ^ Chok Simyee (10 May 2018). "Jeffrey forms pact with BN to form coalition state government". The Borneo Post. Retrieved 11 May 2018.
  20. ^ a b Natasha Joibi (10 May 2018). "Sabahans call Jeffrey Kitingan a 'traitor' for helping BN form state govt". The Star. Retrieved 11 May 2018.
  21. ^ Muguntan Vanar (25 April 2018). "Jeffrey Kitingan hit with seven-day bankruptcy notice". The Star. Retrieved 11 May 2018.
  22. ^ Zurairi Ar (11 May 2018). "Sabah PKR wants MACC to probe Musa Aman, Jeffrey Kitingan". The Malay Mail. MSN. Archived from the original on 11 May 2018. Retrieved 11 May 2018.
  23. ^ Geraldine Tong (11 May 2018). "PM: We will not recognise polls in Sabah if corruption involved". Malaysiakini. Retrieved 11 May 2018.
  24. ^ Avila Geraldine; Norasikin Daineh (11 May 2018). "Warisan now has 35 seats, enough to form state government: Shafie [NSTTV]". New Straits Times. Retrieved 12 May 2018.
  25. ^ Rodelio Junjun Taucan (12 May 2018). "Tun Juhar arah Musa letak jawatan" (in Malay). Utusan Malaysia. Retrieved 13 May 2018.
  26. ^ Ruzaini Zulkepli (13 May 2018). "Warisan tidak akan sama dengan UMNO - Shafie Apdal" (in Malay). Astro Awani. Retrieved 13 May 2018.
  27. ^ Suraini Andokong (13 May 2018). "Shafie's appointment constitutionally valid – lawyer". The Borneo Post. Retrieved 13 May 2018.
  28. ^ "Constitution of the State of Sabah [LIST OF AMENDMENTS]". State Government of Sabah. Retrieved 13 May 2018.
  29. ^ "Istana serah surat kepada Musa" (in Malay). Berita Harian. 14 May 2018. Retrieved 14 May 2018.
  30. ^ Samantha Khor (14 May 2018). "[BREAKING] Musa Aman Is No Longer Chief Minister Of Sabah". Retrieved 14 May 2018.
  31. ^ "Keputusan Pilihan Raya Umum Parlimen/Dewan Undangan Negeri". Election Commission of Malaysia. Retrieved 18 May 2018. Percentage figures based on total turnout (including votes for candidates not listed).
  32. ^ "Sabah [Parliament Results]". The Star (Malaysia). Archived from the original on 18 May 2018. Retrieved 18 May 2018.

Further reading[edit]