Pakatan Harapan Sarawak to field 31 candidates in upcoming GE

Pakatan Harapan Sarawak press conference at DAP headquarters today. From second left: Baru, Chong and Mohd Fidzuan.

KUCHING: Pakatan Harapan Sarawak has set up an election committee for the upcoming general election where it will field candidates in all 31 parliamentary areas.

State Democratic Action Party (DAP) chairman Chong Chieng Jen who is heading the committee told a press conference today that the vision for the election committee is to tackle state Barisan Nasional (BN) in the coming election.

He said GE14 would see the state opposition coalition which consists of DAP, Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) and Parti Amanah Negara (Amanah) versus BN in general.

“We have settled all the seats together. There will be no overlapping seats (among the opposition parties),” Chong said.

Chong who is also Kuching MP said whatever happened in Peninsular Malaysian will be a stimulus for change here in Sarawak.

“Basically the Malay ground in the Peninsular, for BN, particularly for UMNO, has been shaken,” he said and put across four reasons to substantiate his arguments.

Firstly, the impact of goods and services tax (GST) after three years has caused the ringgit to depreciate and has further resulted in high cost of living.

Secondly, the 1MDB issue had shaken the civil service institution and regulatory bodies such as Bank Negara as many regulations have been ‘thrown out the window’.

Thirdly, the Felda issue (Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission’s investigation into Felda Global Ventures Holdings for alleged graft) has hit hard at the core of BN support as Felda members have been hardcore supporters of UMNO.

Lastly, the fact that Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad has switched allegiance to support the opposition has impacted UMNO.

In view of BN’s weaknesses, Chong believed that it was thus important for the opposition coalition in Sarawak to play a significant role to affect a change of government.

He said the three parties within Pakatan Harapan Sarawak – state DAP, state PKR and state Amanah – will work together in one heart to move towards achieving that aim.

The Kota Sentosa state assemblyman added that the opposition coalition’s manifesto for the upcoming election has been formed along the lines of ‘the change of government’ where some of the promises include the setting up of English-medium schools and 100 per cent treated water in Sarawak.

Also present at the press conference were state PKR chairman Baru Bian who is also Ba Kelalan state assemblyman as well as Deputy Chairman 1 of the Pakatan Harapan Sarawak Election committee and Mohd Fidzuan Zaidi from Amanah, who is also the Deputy Chairman 2 of the committee.