Monday, August 22, 2011

Sarawak Dayaks bracing for Change

After the Sarawak State Elections where the opposition parties had, especially DAP made inroads into Sarawak's urban constituencies, things have quietened down. BN is still the overall "ruler" and Sarawakians, whether they like it or not, have to live with the old bearded Chief Minister popularly known as "white hair" or "pek mo" in Chinese. He's still the powerful figure around the state, a person respected by many and also hated by a few. I neither like nor hate the man. Corruption aside, he's just another man who knows how to play politics, doing what many would do if they are given the very same opportunity. He's able to stay in power principally due to the support from the Dayaks.

The State may soon see a new party emerging, talks are that a group of disgruntled SUPP leaders may be behind the formation of this supposedly "pro" BN group. It's a Chinese group with a sprinkle of Dayak leaders supporting the idea, the Dayaks sadly are divided and their interest in politics have thrown them in everyone's court.Their 2 leaders who were honoured recently with "Tan Sris" remain the "Mambo Jambos" of Dayak politics in Sarawak. They are "caged" birds of the Taib establishment.

Other Dayak leaders love to be bystanders, although some intellectuals would howl aimlessly at the system but not actively participating in the political arena. A few have of late emerged and aligning themselves with Pakatan Rakyat. It is interesting to watch their movements, gauge their thoughts in the next few months before the next GE. Like rabbits, some are already coming out of their hideouts, eager to make known their intentions for equality.

The new breed of Dayak leaders have a long journey ahead. For now, it is how they can convince the rural folks in the rural areas that matters most. It is the poor rural folks who need to be inspired with "change". And deprived of the mainstream media, these rural Dayaks are easily waylaid by sweet promises, a tactic that has been applied by BN and was effective. BN has taken them for granted all these years. Will they now brace for change?

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Defeated Sarawak Political Parties

The Sarawak National Party (SNAP) has been asked to “close shop” by an SPDP vice President and it was headlines in a local tabloid a few days back. This little boy gesture for them to "tutup kedai" is seen as an embarrassment.

SNAP is today left far behind politically in the State with zero seats in the State cabinet, so nobody cares about this oldest political group whether they close shop or not or do whatever they want to do. Everyone knows that it is led by a bunch of disgruntled politicians who have made some failed strategies. They are obviously fading out, losing all their deposits except for 1 state constituency in the recently concluded State Elections.

The party that could fall into the same trap is SUPP or Sarawak United Peoples Party, the oldest Chinese based Party which always claimed to be "multi-racial" with tongue in cheek. This Party will soon be fated to go too if they still carry on with their make believe that the Chinese electorates are behind them. Their days are numbered with the Chinese having made their voice heard loud and clear that their choice today is DAP. With only 2 Chinese YBs left in the State Cabinet representing them, SUPP should re-examined their set-up internally, come down to earth and accept the fact that they are now a “defeated” foe of DAP. They have to change their ways and face facts.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

DOMINO EFFECT in 5 years Time

It’s normal for some ruffling to take place after any Elections. The recently concluded Sarawak State Elections caused a few raised eyebrows because BN has lost some ground, luck appeared to be on PBB’s side, they managed to win in all their contested constituencies with reduced majorities in many areas where they have been known to dominate.

SUPP’s outgoing Chairman Dr. George Chan today called on the party to inject new blood by giving the younger lot to lead the Chinese based party. He’s banking on a Doctor who lost in the Election to take over from him. Surely, this gesture would annoy his other senior counterparts namely Wong Soon Koh and Peter Chin, Ministers and veterans who can be upgraded to the post quite easily by virtue of their seniority. Strictly speaking, the Chinese in Sarawak have lost trust on their once strong party.

PRS is also without their own trouble as their YB Joseph Mauh is accused by a Tuai Rumah of giving bounced checks. The video clip is on “you tube” interestingly. PRS lost Pelagus and cannot assume their role as the spokesman of the Dayaks anymore.

SPDP’s President Mawan is left with only 3 YBs who might support him and come the next TGA may see the band of 5 dethroning him as Party President. Many know him as not being a man of his words and lacking principles, so he has to be wary of what he does in the appointment of his Political Secretaries soon. But one thing is for certain, he has to stop his drinking habits.

BN has really to pull up their socks to win convincingly in the next parliamentary general Election in Sarawak. The people of Sarawak are waking up and the rural sectors will be the next target of the opposition. They have already captured 2 seats in the sub rural, so going rural is just a matter of time. Sarawak will experience the DOMINO EFFECT in 5 years time. BN is losing their grip in this Oil rich State deprived of mainstream development.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

A Blessing in Disguise

Winning is one and losing seats to the opposition is another. While BN may rejoice at winning, it is no guarantee that the so called “fixed deposit” will stay for them. The cue is already there, the beginning of BN’s unpopularity has started and is spreading in Sarawak.

Reduced majorities in many rural areas where BN once controlled outright cannot be brushed aside. Khairy, the UMNO Youth Chief realized that “something” went wrong for BN to experience its worst loss in Sarawak. He's right!

To lose seats in the urban areas is indeed a concern and a blow to BN. They know it without admitting it obviously. Urban voters are amongst the educated and the contention that BN has won and that the victory endorses Taib’s leadership may not really be true.

DAP has managed to spearhead the challenge in all the urban areas namely Kuching, Sibu and Miri, destroyed the President of SUPP and doubled their seats in the house. Opposition PKR secured 3 seats and unseated the Deputy President of SPDP in a rural constituency means the political struggle for Change is already spreading to the interior of Sarawak.

There is a mild celebration of victory on the additional seats amongst the opposition camps, their mission to break BN’s stranglehold is accomplished. They have begun the war for change. And the next battle is the Parliamentary Elections in Sarawak.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Will it be a Black Saturday

BN is trailing in many constituencies based on "real" happenings on the ground in both the urban and rural areas of Sarawak. The State Elections is going to be a very hard fought battle and voters are the ones ultimately going to decide the fate of Sarawak on Saturday, 16th of April amid all the political “heavyweights” from both BN and opposition PR coming to Sarawak to spread their propaganda from West Malaysia.

Come what may, it doesn’t look too good for a few PBB areas like Jepak, Lambir and Telang Usan. It is reported that even Jabu may be slayed. After a few decades, the once formidable PBB may shed tears on Saturday night. SUPP will have to brace itself for more “defeats” at the hands of DAP and their President George Chan contesting in the State constituency of Piasau will perhaps be the biggest casualty in this Elections. Their Repok seat may also fall from the feedback I received lately.

PRS is also said to be in trouble and may lose 1 or 2 seats which will be bad news for Masing. He may lose Pelagus. Whilst SPDP will have to surrender at least 2 seats, their Deputy President Peter Nyarok is under heavy bombardment and Baru Bian in Ba Kelalan is expected to win hands down.

Saturday the 16th of April 2011 may go down into the History Books as the day Sarawakians decide that CHANGE must come. I may be wrong but what if I am right.

Sunday, April 10, 2011


The current campaigns all over the State of Sarawak are quite somber from the feedback I got from friends on the ground. BN is still holding the magic wane whilst PKR is well way ahead as a crowd puller. Pulling crowds can be dangerous when you talk on the subject of changing for the sake of changing. People like to listen to new ideas which sometimes can be magically implanted in people’s minds hence detrimental to BN’s old and outdated style of politics. Crowds coming out to support the opposition means there's a wind of change sweeping the State.

And should BN loses out in more constituencies, perhaps experiencing tsunamis in areas they least expected to lose, it will be due to 2 old men leading the pack of wolves. The 2 old grey haired politicians, still harping their old tunes from the 70’s are physically no match against their younger opponents, only luck and a lot of money will see them pull through and win. You see, people are simply fed up with the 2 individuals, not so much that they hate BN, No. It is speculated that whilst the maestro Taib could win with a reduced majority, Georgy Boy could be slayed by a young DAPian in Miri.

Many BN incumbents are facing the onslaught of the “Anwar” plus “Guan Eng’s” tactics blue printed in Penang that they could be swept off their feet once and for all. Sarawak’s electorates, old and young are today getting braver, wiser and farsighted then say 5 or 10 years ago. Education has changed things, the media has changed things, and the Arab upheavals certainly have changed things. These are only some reasons that can make BN fall out of favour in many areas, both urban and rural. Old tactics don’t play well no more.

Let’s all wait for Saturday 16th of April for the results that are expected to shock you, me and everyone.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Will Predictions come through - A new Chief Minister for Sarawak?

Elections are always interesting for all those akin to politics and also a time for people to engage in fruitful arguments. Some may turn ugly, that's expected. Many people in Sarawak welcome it because they see it as a time to “make some money” too. But of course, BN will be quite generous with the people during such a time dishing out their “supersonic” projects, and by hook or by crook, just ask and you will likely get what you want. Fishing for votes is an old game plan.

The Sarawak National Party, better known as SNAP to the older generation may thwart their foes in the upcoming Elections, that is if they have learnt their lesson from the last one where they were thrashed except for one seat. But what is disturbing is the fact that PKR is also interested in this wrestling game for seats. Here it means trouble for SNAP and the Opposition if they cannot come to terms on the allocation of seats. Disunity will see them crumble. That said, I think SNAP is still a party that can score some victories, if given the chance to go 1 to 1 with BN.

SNAP’s President, Edwin Dundang who resides in Miri and a known figure in Baram from his days as District Officer in Marudi has announced that he will be the candidate for Marudi. Edwin has also released to the Press names of SNAP members who have been chosen to stand in Dayak majority areas. It certainly looks like SNAP is taking things seriously and well prepared to go to battle. With political veteran Tajem to chart the course, one really cannot predict the outcome and what they can do to win the hearts of the Dayaks. They are after all the oldest party in the state and their logo is still well accepted by the older folks of the Iban communities. Could they spring up some surprises?

DAP is really interested only in areas where the Chinese are the majority and as such will hold their fort and unseat SUPP in some more urban areas like Miri.

Because of PAS’s influence towards the muslims and Malays, PBB (Parti Bumiputera Bersatu) may see some defeats this time around if the right candidates from the Opposition pact are picked to challenge some of their old incumbents.

SPDP (some described as Semua Palau Dalam Pub - "palau" in Iban means drunk) has to pull up their socks and should they lose any seats in this Elections, it will be because of their “palau” habits. Their YBs drink too much except for the Group of 5 who are still, though quietly, very much against their President Mawan.

The Party that would still prove their mettle is PRS led by Dr. James Masing. This Iban based party is expected to win all seats.Their only big problem now is Pelagus where Larry Sng, the youngest member of Taib's cabinet, may be thrown in as a "direct" BN candidate. The BN leadership (CM and PM) can do what they like as far as choice of candidates go.

Having said all of the above, what is most dangerous for BN and can see BN losing out in Sarawak is the word CHANGE that has taken over people's minds in many parts of the world. The Opposition is blessed with this word and if we do get a new Chief Minister for Sarawak, whoever that maybe, it is Sarawakians going for CHANGE, no more no less.