KOTA KINABALU: SABAH may not see the last of the two Barisan Nasional stalwarts who lost in the general election over the weekend.
Upko president Tan Sri Bernard Dompok and LDP president Datuk Liew Vui Keong will likely remain key figures in the state's political scenario.
Dompok, a staunch advocator of touchy issues, lost in Penampang to PKR's Darell Leiking while Liew lost to DAP's Wong Tien Fatt in Sandakan.
Both Dompok and Liew, who contested as immediate past incumbents, were also members of the Federal cabinet.
In thanking his supporters and congratulating winners of the election, Dompok said he re-contested the seat with a clear conscience and a commitment to resolve issues close to the people's hearts.
"I have supported a movement to bring about transformation in this country, especially on issues relating to illegal immigration, education, religion andgood governance.
"Obviously, the people of Penampang have rejected my approach.
"They have exercised their democratic rights through the ballot box and I respect their decision," he said in a statement.
Dompok, however, would likely be in the limelight soon when the Royal Commission of Inquiry on Illegal Immigrants resumes for its fourth session here on May 20.
He has been slotted to take the stand as a witness and present a 25-volume report with interviews from 1,000 people.
In the election, Upko or United Pasokmomogun Kadazandusun and Murut Organisation fielded candidates in four parliamentary and six state seats. They won three parliamentary and two state seats.
As for Liew, he assured the people that he represented over the last five years that he would continue to serve them in various capacities.
He believed that he had lost because of the growing support for the opposition from the younger generation of Malaysians who voted for the first time.
"I was not able to fend off the wave from the opposition," Liew said, adding the election had also shown the process of democracy setting its tone in the country.
As for the LDP or Liberal Democratic Party, it won three state seats out of four.
Incumbents Datuk Teo Chee Kang and Datuk Pang Nyuk Ming won Tanjung Kapor and Merotai while newcomer Charles Pang won the Karamunting seat. Chin Shu Ying lost in Likas.
The BN coalition also saw the defeat of PBS deputy president Datuk Dr Yee Moh Chai and its Youth chief Datuk Jahid Jahim in Api-Api and Tamparuli. Both were members of the state cabinet.
Another key leader who lost was Sabah MCA chief Datuk Edward Khoo as the Kepayan incumbent. DAP's Dr Edwin Bosie won the seat.