In the 13th Parliamentary General Elections of May 5, 2013, the call and slogan of the polls was “505 – Change Government”.
In the 11th Sarawak State General Election on May 7, 2016, the call and slogan of the polls should be “507 – Create Miracles”.
This is a tall order for the voters of Sarawak in ten days time on May 7, 2016 – for they are being asked to create a third political wave in Sarawak and Malaysia in preparation for the fourth political wave in Sarawak in five years time in 2021.
The first wave of political change in Sarawak was in the 2006 Sarawak state general election where the people of Kuching, Sibu, Meradong and Bintulu stood up for the rights of all Sarawakians by giving the DAP an unprecedented six State Assembly seats in Sarawak.
This created a great impact and was the precursor to the “political tsunami” of the 12th Parliamentary General Elections in 2008, which saw Barisan Nasional lost power in five states – Kelantan, Kedah, Perak, Penang and Selangor.
The second political wave was the 2011 Sarawak State general election where DAP State Assembly representation in Sarawak was doubled from six to 12, with Miri and Sarikei joining Kuching, Sibu, Meradong and Bintulu in the vanguard for political change.
This impacted on the 13th Parliamentary General Election in 2013, resulting in a whisker away from change of federal government in Putrajaya.
Although Datuk Seri Najib Razak won only 47% of the popular vote, he was able to win 60% of the parliamentary seats because of constituency gerrymandering and an unfair democratic system, resulting in his becoming the first minority Prime Minister of Malaysia.
Will voters of Sarawak initiate a third wave of political change in Sarawak and Malaysia on May 7, with
the voters of Serian, Tasik Biru, Mambong, Simanggang, Mulu, Murum, Samalaju, Pakan, Ngemah, Katibas and Bukit Goram giving full support to the voters of Kuching, Sibu, Meradong, Sarikei, Bintulu and Miri for political change and meaningful development for all?
This is the historic challenge on May 7, which will have a far-reaching impact on the 14th Parliamentary General Elections in two years’ time – which is why the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak had visited Sarawak over 50 times and why he was in Sarawak on Nomination Day, the first time a Malaysian Prime Minister was present in Sarawak on the nomination day in 11 Sarawak state general elections!
The voters of Sarawak will be deciding on two important questions on May 7 – who will be the new Sarawak Chief Minister on May 7, and the future of the Prime Minister of Malaysia.
Actually, who will be the Chief Minister of Sarawak was decided on Nomination Day, as it is as clear as daylight that Tan Sri Adenan Satem will be the Chief Minister of Sarawak for the next five years.
But the answer to the second question has to await the outcome of the Sarawak state general election on May 7.
This is why Najib is more concerned than Adenan about the results of the Sarawak state general election, for he would want to be able to use a landslide Barisan Nasional victory in Sarawak as an endorsement of his premiership, not only in Malaysia but to the whole wide world – in order to counter an avalanche of adverse publicity, both nationally and internationally, as a result of his twin mega financial scandals.
I am quite perplexed why Adenan thinks that I am laying up a trap for him or had some tricks up my sleeve when I said that the question of him as the Sarawak Chief Minister for the next five years is a “done deal” as a result of Nomination Day on Monday.
Let me assure Adenan that I am not a magician and I have no tricks up my sleeve – as I was just stating the political realities of the day. It is those who think that Adenan will not become the Sarawak Chief Minister for the next five years who will need to have their heads examined.
This is why I find any need by Adenan to solicit the help of the Gerakan Youth chief to fortify his argument that he might not be the Sarawal Chief Minister on May 7 as laughable and pathetic.
The Gerakan Youth chief, who heads the list of political ignoramus among BN leaders, warned Sarawak voters not to fall hook, line and sinker for my “assurance” that Adenan Satem would remain as chief minister, urging Sarawakians to be wary of DAP’s “tricks” by reminding them of the time when DAP wrested Penang from Gerakan in 2008 when nobody foresaw Penang falling to DAP then.
At least the Gerakan Youth chief has admitted his concerns that the Sarawak Barisan Nasional has feet of clay like Gerakan in Penang in 2008, and could tumble over and fall from power with a slight shove in a general election.
Does Adenan agree with the Gerakan Youth chief who thinks that the Sarawak Barisan Nasional is only a “paper tiger” like the Gerakan in Penang in 2008 and that he, Adenan Satem, is as vulnerable as Koh Tsu Koon in 2008?
While it is true that the “political tsunami” in the 12th General Elections in 2008 came as a total surprise, resulting in the fall of Barisan Nasional in five states – an impact caused by the first wave of political change initiated by the 2006 Sarawak state general election – it is sheer ignorance or naivette for anyone to overlook the fact that DAP had been aiming to capture the Penang State Governnent for nearly two decades.
I myself had led the DAP “Tanjong” campaigns in the 1990 and 1995 General Elections to capture the Penang State Government, although to no avail.
But this is not the case with Sarawak, as Sarawak DAP had never claimed that it was ready to capture or form the Sarawak State Government.
I must however thank the political ignoramus who is the Gerakan Youth Chief for giving me an opportunity to elaborate on the meaning and significance of the May 7 vote in the 11th Sarawak state general election.
I had called on Sarawak voters to embrace the call and slogan of “May 7 – Create Miracles” to initiate a third political wave in Sarawak and Malaysia, with the voters of Serian, Tasik Biru, Mambong, Simanggang, Mulu, Murum, Samalaju, Pakan, Ngemah, Katibas and Bukit Goram giving full support to the voters of Kuching, Sibu, Meradong, Sarikei, Bintulu and Miri for political change and meaningful development for all.
This is not to topple Adenan as Sarawak Chief Minister, as his position is secure and untouchable, but to ensure a strong and effective Opposition voice in the Sarawak State Assembly to ensure that Adenan keeps his promise and pledges to give priority to the rights and interests of ordinary Sarawakians.
The most the Opposition can hope for on May 7 is to deny Adenan two-thirds majority in the Sarawak State Assembly, which means winning at least 28 State Assembly seats.
There is another reason why Sarawakian voters should embrace the call and slogan of “May 7 – Create Miracles”, for the third political wave that could be created by the 11th Sarawak state general election will pave the way for a fourth political wave in the 12th Sarawak state general election in five years’ time in 2021!
Contrary to what the Gerakan Youth chief thinks, the DAP will not try to capture the Sarawak state government by stealth like a thief in the night.
Like all political parties, DAP wants to have the opportunity to form the government, whether at the state or federal government, but we will carry out such a democratic objective in a open, honest and honourable manner.
In the case of Sarawak, I have no doubt that Sarawak DAP will announce such an objective when the conditions are ripe – and the conditions are not ripe unless and until the advent of the third political wave in the 11th Sarawak State General Election on May 7 when the voters of Serian, Tasik Biru, Mambong, Simanggang, Mulu, Murum, Samalaju, Pakan, Ngemah, Katibas and Bukit Goram give full support to the voters of Kuching, Sibu, Meradong, Sarikei, Bintulu and Miri for political change and meaningful development for all.
If there is a third political wave in the 11th Sarawak state general election on May 7, then the conditions will be ripe for a fourth political wave in five years’ time, when DAP Sarawak will be able to announce its preparedness with like-minded Sarawakians to aim for the formation of Sarawak state government in the 12th Sarawak state general election in 2021.
In politics, we must not just aim for the battle of the moment, but the battle for eternity – not only to improve the present conditions of the people but to aim to secure the long-term rights and interests of our children and children’s children.
I am 75 years ago and I do not know whether I will be able to see the outcome of the 12th Sarawak state general elections in 2021.
But I hope and pray that the first step will be taken on May 7, starting from Serian, Mambong, Tasik Biru and Simanggang, for the political journey of a thousand miles to create the third political wave so as to lead to the fourth political wave in 2021.
(Speech at the DAP Sarawak state general election ceramah in Bukit Semuja state assembly constituency in Serian on Wednesday, 27th April 2016 at 9 pm)