Call for Opposition parties in state to be Sarawak-based just a political ploy – Chong

Chong Chieng Jen

KUCHING, Nov 16: The chief minister’s call for a 100 per cent Sarawak-based Opposition party in the state was nothing but a mere political trickery of the Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS).

It is simply a move by Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Tun Openg to divert the real political issues and problems in Sarawak, said the state Pakatan Harapan chairman Chong Chieng Jen.

“In fact, all these years and until now, Sarawak is governed by 100 per cent Sarawak-based parties but yet, Sarawak has become one of the least-developed state in Malaysia,” the Stampin MP said in a press statement.

“It is the 100 per cent Sarawak-based parties who allowed our oil resources to be surrendered to the Federal Government first in 1974 and then the subsequent years of exploitation,” he added.

Chong, who is also Sarawak DAP chairman, pointed out that it was also the 100 per cent Sarawak-based parties who allowed the state’s rich timber resources to be monopolised by a few companies close to the ruling elites of the 100 per cent Sarawak-based parties.

He added that it was also the 100 per cent Sarawak-based political parties who have restricted native customary rights (NCR) over land, rendering the conversion of supposedly NCR lands to become State land, thereby bringing about discontent among native landowners and a multitude of NCR cases in court.

“These 100 per cent Sarawak-based parties are the ones who allowed our vast area of State land to be sold at far below market prices to the crony companies, enriching themselves at the expense of the general and ordinary Sarawakians.

“They are also responsible for the vast wealth disparity in the rich and the poor in the State after having governed Sarawak for 55 years.”

Chong opined that the real issues and problems of the people of Sarawak was the corrupt and poor administration of the state government, not the geographical base of any political party.

He said that Abang Johari’s sudden interest in creating the notion of 100 per cent Sarawak-based parties and even mentioning it in his Budget 2019 winding-up speech, had stemmed from the fear that GPS was now under threat of losing state power.

“As such, he hoped that the so-called 100 per cent Sarawak-based parties, which he helped create, can act to divide the Opposition support, thereby enhancing the winning chances of the GPS,” he continued.

Chong called upon right-thinking Sarawakians not to fall for this political trickery, alleging that the chief minister was playing to Sarawakians’ growing sense of regionalism similar to the same tactic parties like UMNO and PAS have deployed by playing the race and religion card.

“All such tactics are used with the primary motive to distract the focus of the people from the mismanagement, cronyism and the corruption issues which are plaguing our state,” he lamented.

Chong said that the only way that all Sarawakians can progress and prosper together is by having a clean, transparent and fair government. — DayakDaily