Nothing new if I am challenged in next state polls — Masing

Tan Sri Dr James Masing

KUCHING, Oct 2: Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) president Tan Sri Dr James Jemut Masing is neither perturbed nor surprised by a possible electoral challenge from the brother of a PRS leader in the next state election, which is due in 2021.

Masing, who is Baleh assemblyman, reasoned that Sarawak is a democracy and anyone could join the fray and pick their own battlefield.

“It does not matter. This is a democracy. Anybody can stand in Baleh or anywhere else they deem fit.

“In my 35 years in Baleh, no one has ever left me alone. What is the difference if I am challenged in 2021?” Masing, who is also a deputy chief minister, told DayakDaily today.

He was responding to the news yesterday that Koh Kumbong — the elder brother of Hulu Rajang MP Datuk Wilson Ugak Kumbong — was keen to venture into politics and was eyeing Baleh in the next state polls.

“Last time, he (Koh) wanted to stand in Hulu Rajang against Ugak, until I told him off. That is the person I need to deal with,” said Masing.

Meanwhile, when contacted, Ugak said he and Koh might be brothers by blood, but politically, it would be up to Koh to make his own decision.

Datuk Wilson Ugak Kumbong

Ugak brought up the case of Parti Bersatu Sabah (PBS) president Tan Sri Joseph Pairin Kitingan who was challenged by his two younger brothers Parti Solidariti Tanah Airku president Datuk Dr Jeffrey Kitingan and Crispin Kitingan of Parti Warisan Sabah in the May 9 general election this year.

Ugak said the Kitingans are brothers, but in politics, they have different views and are contesting against each other under different parties.

“For me, I will fight those who fight my party. In politics, we must uphold certain principles.

“I will always be a PRS man, from beginning to the end. I will stand up for PRS. No one should ever doubt it,” he emphasised.

Ugak said 2021 was still a long way to go, and despite his brother’s claim, he doubted if things would go according to his brother’s way.

He said Koh formerly worked for the Information Department.

“He is now on pension. There are many individuals like him who just want to try their luck. If they are lucky, they get what they want. If not, it is okay for them. There is nothing to lose,” opined Ugak. — DayakDaily