PKR Sarawak calls on GPS to stop leaders from dictating headmen selection, demands abolition of Ordinance disrespecting community rights

Roland Engan

By DayakDaily Team

KUCHING, June 5: Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) Sarawak has called on the Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS)-led government to demonstrate seriousness in preventing leaders at various levels from dictating the selection process of headmen.

In a press statement issued today, PKR Sarawak chairman Roland Engan stated that the party suggests revamping the current decision-making process and returning the power of selection to community members according to their recognised customs.


Roland further noted that PKR Sarawak invites everyone to voice out against the rampant abuse of power and interference in the process of selecting headmen in Sarawak.

“Besides that, the present ‘Panel Pelantikan Ketua Kaum & Ketua Masyarakat’ of each division in Sarawak, which is presided by the Resident of each division, should not include politicians in its membership line-up.

“To be exact, all YBs of DUN (assemblymen of Sarawak Legislative Assembly) should not be made members of this Panel. Their political interests and preferences are seen to have dictated the decision of the Resident and the Panel in appointing their preferred headmen,” he added.

He went on to say that PKR Sarawak calls for the immediate abolition of the Community Chiefs and Headmen Ordinance 2004, as it gives the Sarawak government the prerogative power to appoint headmen, thereby disrespecting community customs and depriving them of their rights to choose their own leaders.

“As of now, the enforcement of the said Ordinance has been revoked until today,” he remarked.

Roland’s statement came in response to Progressive Democratic Party (PDP) president Datuk Seri Tiong King Sing’s remarks on interference in the appointment of ‘tuai rumah’ (longhouse headmen).

In a press statement, Tiong strongly urged district and municipal councillors, as well as politicians, to refrain from interfering with the appointments of ‘tuai rumah’ and ‘ketua kampung’ (village chiefs) or face investigations by the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission (MACC). — DayakDaily