The chief minister of one of Malaysia's largest states on Thursday struck a confident note on his party's chances of holding onto power in upcoming elections.
That would mark a major win for the ruling Barisan Nasional party, which is beset by a scandal involving 1MDB, a sovereign wealth fund that was set up to stimulate the country's economy.
Musa Aman, who heads up the state of Sabah, said economic improvements implemented during his 15-year tenure made his party an obvious choice for voters faced with a range of alternatives that lack "long-term policies."
"Some new parties have been formed in the coming elections without clear long-term policies or strategies for the betterment of Sabah," Musa told CNBC's Asia "Squawk Box." But he insisted that citizens could see that his economic blueprint for diversifying the state's economy – namely moving away from primary commodities to services, tourism and manufacturing – was now "bearing fruit."
Sabah is the third-largest of Malaysia's 13 states, home to a more than a tenth of the country's population. Situated on the island of Borneo, it is seen as a bellwether in national elections.