PBB Bawang Assan chief, PDP Bawang Assan deputy youth chief at loggerheads over seat candidacy

Logo of PBB (left) and PDP.

By DayakDaily Team

SIBU, May 2: By prematurely making a public announcement, Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) Bawang Assan chairman Romeo Christopher Tegong has rocked Gabungan Parti Sarawak’s (GPS) boat and shown a lack of understanding towards the leadership and directive of GPS chairman Datuk Patinggi Tan Sri Abang Johari Tun Openg.

In asserting this, Progressive Democratic Party (PDP) Bawang Assan Deputy Youth chief Raymond Gema Tutus also held that what Romeo did was set a ‘dangerous precedent’ on the eve of a potential re-delineation exercise and that Romeo must explain himself.


Gema said this in response to Christopher’s recent public pledge that PBB Bawang Assan will work together with Sarawak United Peoples’ Party (SUPP) to win back the Bawang Assan seat in the coming Sarawak Election.

He asserted such a premature statement is unbecoming of GPS’ ideals as a political union where coalitions partners do not make decisions unilaterally.

“My esteemed colleague Romeo, as a political secretary to the Premier Sarawak, should know that all electoral decisions are made in consultation with all component parties, led by the YAB Premier (Abang Johari), whose political acumen prioritises winnable candidates.

“More importantly, his (Romeo’s) discussion has not involved PDP, an unforgivable oversight considering that the incumbent State assemblyman in Bawang Assan, YB Dato Sri Wong Soon Koh, is a PDP man himself following the dissolution of Parti Sarawak Bersatu (PSB),” said Gema in a press statement.

“Consider this question: by conducting a unilateral discussion between PBB and SUPP branches in Bawang Assan, is Romeo stating that component parties do not have to be consulted, or does he lack confidence in the YAB Premier’s acceptance of the former PSB YB?” questioned Gema.

He said Romeo’s ‘lack of clarity’ will most certainly cause confusion in GPS supporters in Bawang Assan, particularly former PSB members whom he believed Romeo also wanted to recruit, yet refused to engage with.

He reminded Romeo that PDP has always toed the GPS line on distribution of seats as PDP respects the decisions of the GPS leadership under Abang Johari when it comes to the selection of candidates from GPS component parties for the greater good.

PDP, he said, had itself conceded seats and withdrawn its candidates on this basis of mutual discussion in good faith, and both parties never quoted “traditional seat” as the main focus.

Gema expressed disappointment that Romeo would suddenly throw his support behind SUPP by bringing up the “traditional seat” argument, and such stance showed that Romeo “had gone against everything GPS has stood for”.

“The YAB Premier has already expressed during the recent Raya festivities that the discussion of Bawang Assan and Engkilili will be carried out in due time with GPS component parties. So what is Romeo trying to achieve by sidelining PDP in this matter altogether?” Gema asked. — DayakDaily