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By Peter Sibon
KUCHING, Dec 20: Batu Danau assemblyman Paulus Palu Gumbang is confident that his constituency will become a Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) stronghold in the next state election.
This considering that PBB has 4,200 registered members in the constituency, forming more than half of the some 8,000 registered voters in the area, he said.
“PBB is now the strongest political party in Batu Danau with 25 sub-branches and 4,200 members. The bulk of SPDP members have since followed me to join PBB,” he told DayakDaily.
In the 2016 state polls, Paulus, who was former Sarawak Progressive Democratic Party (SPDP) supreme council member – now known as Progressive Democratic Party (PDP) – along with three others party lawmakers, stood as Barisan Nasional direct candidates.
Paulus, along with two former SPDP leaders, Rosey Yunus (Bekenu) and Tan Sri William Mawan Ikom (Pakan), won their seats and subsequently joined PBB.
In last state election, Paulus won Batu Danau with a 2,939-vote majority in a straight fight against an Independent candidate Ali Adap. Paulus polled 4,366 votes against Ali’s 1,427.
Meanwhile, on the latest seat acquired by PBB following Mambong assemblyman Datuk Dr Jerip Susil jumping ship from Parti Sarawak Bersatu (PSB), sentiment on the ground is that the former PSB deputy president must work hard to earn the trust and confidence of voters.
PBB Mambong acting chairman Datuk Detta Samen said PBB has more than 4,000 registered members in the constituency.
“To me, Datuk Dr Jerip has to work hard to convince PBB members to support him. Besides that, he too must also work extra hard to convince the fence sitters to also support him,” he said when contacted.
Mambong, previsouly known as Bengoh, is traditionally contested by Sarawak United Peoples’ Party (SUPP) under the state ruling coalition.
Recently, both SUPP and PDP have claimed all their ‘lost’ seats in the coming state election due 2021, where the former has expressed its intention to contest in 20 seats and the latter, in eight seats. — DayakDaily