Sim: S’wak has ‘no choice’ but to hold polls in 60 days when emergency ends, unless Agong intervenes

Sim Kiang Chiok

KUCHING, July 28: Sarawak will have no choice but to hold its State election within 60 days once Malaysia’s Emergency Order is lifted after Aug 1, unless the Yang di-Pertuan Agong intervenes by declaring a localised Emergency for Sarawak or extends it nationwide.

Sarawak United People’s Party (SUPP) Stakan branch chairman Sim Kiang Chiok said except for the Agong himself, not one person or even the Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) government can change the current trend of events.

“The fact is Sarawak has no choice but to hold an election in 60 days based on the (Malaysian) Constitution and with the supposed removal of the Emergency proclamation which we anticipate will happen anytime before Aug 1.

“So, should there be an election, it is not the choice of any person but a compulsion driven by constitutional rules, unless our King (Agong) extends the Emergency Ordinance in Malaysia or specifically in Sarawak, then our State Elections will be on hold till a later date,” he said.

He urged Sarawakians not to be influenced by Democratic Action Party (DAP)’s actions of enraging public perception that the Sarawak government “wants an election to be held”.

Sim, who is also Sarawak Housing and Real Estate Developers’ Association (Sheda) Kuching branch chairman, said Sarawak could have gone to the polls several times especially in mid 2020 when the Covid-19 situation was under control, but the GPS government chose to wait.

Citing the Sabah outbreak due to its state elections, he pointed out DAP and Parti Warisan Sabah (Warisan) were the ones who needlessly dissolved the Sabah State Legislative Assembly (DUN) which unleashed a devastating wave of Covid-19 spike thereafter.

“DAP seems to think Sarawakians have forgotten that not only did DAP support the dissolution in Sabah, but the Sarawak DAP also actively campaigned in Sabah and could have brought more Covid-19 cases into Sarawak then.

“It was fortunate that the GPS government was vigilant in enforcing the 14-day quarantine upon arrival which managed to soften the blow a little but eventually the wave became so strong that we had to go back to total lockdown,” he said in a statement today.

Meanwhile, Sim also hit back at DAP for implying a low Covid-19 vaccination rate in Sarawak whereas in reality, Sarawak is one of the most vaccinated state in Malaysia.

Referring to data from Special Committee on Ensuring Access to Covid-19 Vaccine Supply (JKJAV) dated July 25, he said 1,140,604 or 40.5 per cent of total population have been vaccinated with two doses while another 1,660,168 or 58.9 per cent with first doses.

In three weeks’ time which is the usual time lapse for the two-dose vaccination, he said Sarawak will then achieve more than 80 per cent vaccination rate over the total Sarawak population and reach herd immunity.

With this guarantee, SUPP Stakan expressed support for the Chief Minister if State Elections were to be held on condition of safety assurance by the Ministry of Health (MOH) and strict standard operating procedure (SOP) by Election Commission (EC). — DayakDaily