PDP: Seat swapping within GPS to ensure winning

Dato Sri Tiong King Sing

By D’Drift Team

LIMBANG, July 6: Progressive Democratic Party (PDP) president Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing is advocating for seat swapping within Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) where only candidates of winnability be placed instead holding on to the principle of “traditional seats”.

To Tiong, the notion of clinging on to “traditional seats” will bring troubles for GPS.

“Political parties should not cling on to electoral seats simply because they were allocated those seats in the past.

“Within a coalition, any leaders without strong grassroots support should be placed in other seats and swapped with candidates from parties with a strong track record of serving the people and capable of securing that seat.

“Simply allowing candidates to be placed in their so-called ‘traditional’ seats will spell trouble for the entire coalition,” said Tiong in a statement yesterday.

He said within GPS, of which PDP is a component member, there must be a policy of placing candidates from parties in areas based on their winnability with solid track record, instead of some vague notion of “tradition”.

Seats should be allocated on the premise of who is most able to secure that seat. If one party’s candidate is not the best pick for a certain area, the party should be matured enough to accept this and be placed in an area where they have a stronger chance of winning, asserted Tiong.

“We should be working based on the principle of power sharing and consensus. And this means that candidates must be fielded in seats with the highest chances of winning, even if this means swapping seats with other component political parties.

“PDP’s candidates will be judged on their capabilities and I believe the GPS leadership would be able to see the good work that has been done by them. There is no need for us to paint a rosy picture to the GPS leaders in order to prove their worth,” said Tiong who is also Prime Minister’s Special Envoy to China.

He believed that if GPS component members continue to insist on inflexible, rigid, and old principles which had not worked, it will lead to the coalition losing seats in the next elections.

“Even if we swapped seats, it would not automatically lead to any party having fewer seats. At any time, we must adhere to power sharing and working via consensus to maintain harmony and unity,” he said.

Meanwhile, Tiong who is also Bintulu MP, claimed that certain leaders are prone to lording over the people, with threats or instructions to the ketua masyarakat without due consideration for their situation or needs.

“But behind the scenes, those same leaders pander to their political leaders by giving great sounding reports that belie the true situation of the constituencies they are supposed to serve.

“And then when it comes to the elections, they will likely not have anything to show as they had never actually given the proper assistance to the people when they need it.

“This is an unhealthy trend that has been practised by politicians who try to cheat their leaders by giving pleasing sounding news without concrete track record.

“If you don’t have a good track of serving the rakyat or have any kind of solid grassroots support, you might as well retire from politics and allow other more willing and competent people take over the job,” said Tiong.-DayakDaily