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– by Roslan Mutu
KUCHING, Oct 11: Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) Sarawak has denied that there is a major crack in the party, following Julau MP Larry Sng’s outburst against PKR Sarawak chief Baru Bian for allegedly trying to nullify new party members in Julau.
PKR Sarawak secretary Nicholas Bawin claimed the party was on firm ground.
“Our party is still strong and solid. However, there are some characters in the party who paint the scenario as if there is a major crack. The trust is, we are still solid as ever,” Nicholas told DayakDaliy today.
He hoped party members would not make a mountain out of a molehill and create negative perceptions about the party.
“The party leadership is always open for discussion within the four walls. There is no need to create any hoo-ha in public. As party members, we should sort out any difference like a family,” he said.
In his earlier press statement, Nicholas explained that Baru did not respond to the allegations that Sng made on his Facebook page. But since the accusations had found its way into the newspapers, he felt compelled to respond as secretary of the party.
“It seems that Larry is unhappy about certain matters, and he wants the world to know it. The posting he made a few weeks ago about YB Baru’s inaction in the case of the allegations about his political secretary in the process of the party election was the first.
“Larry wanted YB Baru to dismiss his political secretary immediately. Everyone knows that as a lawyer who respects the process of law, YB Baru will not dismiss a person summarily upon mere allegations made against him or her.
“YB had made it clear in a statement that the proper procedure must be followed and the law should be allowed to take its course. Even laymen know about the proverbial maxim that a person is deemed to be innocent until proven guilty,” stressed Bawin.
He reiterated that comparing the case with the one where a minister dismissed his aide for putting his (video) phone up the skirt of a woman was silly because the evidence in that case was clear.
“However, the case against YB Baru’s political secretary is not so straightforward, especially as our party is in the midst of our elections. If Sng was unhappy about this matter, he could have called YB Baru to tell him, but he chose to blast YB Baru on his Facebook (page).
“Many of us were surprised and shocked that he made those self-righteous comments advising our chairman what to do, considering that he has just joined the party,” he said.
Bawin pointed out that the second thing Sng was unhappy about was the fact that the sudden spike in the membership of Julau branch was being challenged.
“Again, he should accept that this is a legitimate process, according to the constitution of the party.
“The members of any division have the right to register objections to new membership. Julau division had registered their objection to the suspicious sudden and drastic increase in membership, in accordance with party guidelines. The fact that the name of the ADUN (assemblyman) from Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) was among the names registered during that single day gives the division reasonable grounds to lodge a protest,” said Bawin.
Bawin clarified that the party’s election committee (JPP) was currently investigating the complaints by Julau division.
“And they (JPP) should be allowed to complete their task.
“Why does Sng assumed that YB Baru is behind the whole thing? Any reasonable person would expect that the existing members of a division would smell something fishy if their membership increased by over 12,000 members in one day, including the name of a GPS ADUN.
“It is an insult to the intelligence of the division chief and his members (to say) that they are like robots under YB Baru’s control. They have the right to object. Nobody has the right to stop the investigation, and no right-thinking person should want to do so. Due process must be allowed to take its course without interference by anyone,” he explained.
Nicholas also alleged that Sng had taken to issuing threats in the party chatgroup if his members were blocked from voting.
“He should remember that he is now in PKR, the People’s Justice Party. Justice must be for all, the rakyat and also members of our party. There must be no attempt to thwart the investigation, and Sng must be prepared to accept the decision of the JPP if any wrong had been committed.
“As for Sng telling YB Baru to focus on people’s issues and corruption, we are amused that he should think he is qualified to tell YB Baru what to do in these matters, knowing his history and past association with the top echelons of BN Sarawak. It is extremely interesting that he should talk about corruption when all the world knows where he (Sng) came from. Sng and YB Baru can let their track records speak for them, in this regard,” Nicholas said.
On Sng’s Facebook post, Bawin pointed out that it was clear Sng was very much given to making assumptions about others.
“He (Sng) assumes that YB Baru’s supposed ‘inaction’ in the matter of his political secretary means that YB Baru does not take corruption seriously. He assumes that YB Baru is behind the investigation into the membership spike of Julau.
“Sng should stop making assumptions and have the maturity and decency to pick up his phone and call YB Baru to discuss whatever he is unhappy about,” he said.
Bawin reiterated that Baru had led PKR Sarawak since 2009, while Sng had been in the party for just four months.
“Obviously not knowing the rules of behaviour and etiquette within a party. I do not know how his former party Sarawak Workers Party (SWP) was run, but he is now a member of PKR and not the president of SWP.
“There is a proper way of doing things, even without the need for written guidelines. Common decency and courtesy demand a certain standard of conduct that unfortunately escapes some people,” he said.
Bawin added that party supporters knew that Baru was always ready and open for discussion with party members.
“I, therefore, question Sng’s motives for launching his attacks on YB Baru on Facebook and issuing similar statements to the press.
“If he wants to portray that he is the best leader for PKR Sarawak or is trying to impress the party leaders in KL, he should not do so by making wrong assumptions and levelling allegations against others.
“To be a leader, one needs to show leadership and have a track record of leadership. Most importantly, one needs to have support and respect from the grassroots and one’s fellow party members. Throwing one’s weight around and creating discord is not the way to do it.
“Respect is earned, and there is no shortcut,” added Nicholas.
Meanwhile, when asked whether the party would take disciplinary action against Sng, Nicholas kept mum and preferred to leave it the party’s top leadership to decide. — DayakDaily