Bersatu’s presence poses a threat to PBB, says Chong

Chong speaking to the reporter at Bintulu Airport

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By Lian Cheng and Karen Bong

BINTULU, Dec 1: Sarawak Pakatan Harapan (PH) chairman Chong Chieng Jen today opined that the entry of Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu) into Sarawak poses a threat to Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB).

On whether Bersatu’s presence will affect the consensus reached between Sarawak DAP, PKR and Amanah in terms of allocation of Sarawak’s seats, Chong told DayakDaily at Bintulu Airport: “We will see how it goes. After all, they (Bersatu) have not set up a branch yet.

“I think they will pose more of a threat to PBB than to other component parties. That is why you see the highhanded, sneaky technique used by Sarawak GPS (Gabungan Parti Sarawak).”

Chong, who is also Kota Sentosa assemblyman and Stampin MP, claimed GPS had resorted to sabotaging to undermine Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad’s visit here today to launch Bersatu Sarawak.

“Even a simple visit like that they have to sort to such a sneaky, underhanded technique trying to sabotage,” he said.

Chong claimed the Resident Office had purposely stopped Bersatu supporters from entering the VIP lounge to show their support for Dr Mahathir.

“They were blocked by the police under the instruction of the Resident Office. That is with the intent of the state government to give the picture that no one is coming to receive PM when he comes to Bintulu. That is the initial intention,” he alleged.

On a related matter, Chong commented that to PH, the entry of Bersatu is “a good thing”.

“Bersatu coming into Sarawak will be a good thing. Number one, if you look at Bersatu Sarawak, it has to be Sarawakians that forms the leadership of Bersatu Sarawak.

“So for their own survival, they will have to convince their national counterpart that whatever policy that they are going to implement, it has to be favourable to Sarawak,” he said.

He claimed that unlike the previous case when Umno was in power, there was no presence of Umno in Sarawak. Regardless of whether Sarawakians support Umno, Sarawak was irrelevant to Umno.

“And coupled with the fact that Umno is the primary decision maker in the Barisan Nasional, they can just pass whatever policy that they think that they want, regardless of the feelings of Sarawakians.

“So, that is why you see a lot of national policies passed whereby Sarawkians’ interest is neglected because Umno is the `Taiko’ (the big brother),” said Chong.

For its own survival, the national Bersatu would need to take heed of its Sarawak counterpart.

“Now that Bersatu has come into Sarawak, they also need Sarawakians’ support. In order to garner the support of Sarawakians, when the national Bersatu intends to propose or implement any policies, it has to take into consideration the interests of Sarawakians. That is for their own survival in Sarawak.

“I think, in that sense, the influence of Sarawak’s interest in the national policy decision-making process will be considerably more important,” said Chong. — DayakDaily