Archive for April 16th, 2011

Malaysia BN will keep Sarawak by a hair’s breadth, say analysts

The Malaysian Insider
Apr 16, 2011

KUCHING, April 16 — The ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) will retain Sarawak today but will end the race with Pakatan Rakyat (PR) dangerously close at its heels, say analysts.

Their polls projections, which were cautious at first, have now grown significantly optimistic for the opposition force, which is contesting in its first-ever state election under the PR umbrella.

Three analysts told The Malaysian Insider yesterday that BN was likely en route to yet another electoral victory in the hornbill state but the contest for two-thirds majority was too close to call.

Such a prediction would have been laughed off at campaign kick-off last week but consistent reports of massive rally turnouts and talk of rising anger against the state’s powerful Chief Minister Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud have now drawn a question mark over BN’s ability to maintain its near-dominance in the 71-seat state assembly. Read the rest of this entry »


Sarawakians! Give yourselves a chance. Free yourselves from 30 years of misery!

by Sakmongkol AK47
The Malaysian Insider
Apr 15, 2011

APRIL 15 — For once, the people of Sarawak must do themselves a favour. Give yourselves a chance. Not give others a chance. They have had 30 years. You only need this one chance. This is your hour. Let your progeny say in future, this was your finest hour.

This is your chance to regain your dignity and pride as a decent human being. Give yourselves the chance to determine your own destiny. Or, at the very least, show to those in power that you matter. There is nothing to fear except fear itself.

Show those in power they can’t scare you with the presence of coercive instruments of power. The police and the army guarding your longhouses are there protecting you. Those Rela people out there are only there for a brief time. What’s left is how you determined your life.

Throw out corruption. Throw out incompetence. Throw out a lifetime of neglect. Reject the bullies.

Give your children and grandchildren the chance. Say it’s enough. You gave Taib Mahmud 30 years of chance. He has taken everything. He has taken the most precious thing from you — your sense of self-worth. Will the Dayaks continue to be complicit in the charade of showing they are only good at performing the ngajat dance and, in that process, be regarded as nothing more than objects of cultural curiosity? Read the rest of this entry »


The last 10 days

By Zairil Khir Johari
April 16, 2011

APRIL 16 — It is now late at night on the final day of the Sarawak campaign. I am exhausted, as is everyone else on both sides of the divide.

It has been a gruelling campaign, especially for those of us who have had to criss-cross the vast state. Nevertheless, the tour is now over and in the evening of the morrow we will be met with either victory or defeat.

I will not attempt to predict the result as I will leave that to those more informed and capable. I would, however, be pleased to share my own personal observations of the mood, characters and happenings of the last 10 days.

The campaign, at least on our part, rocketed off (pardon the pun) to a flying start. Buoyed by a great sense of collective excitement, we went in with all guns blazing.

In Kuching, we chose to pit a young female newcomer against an incumbent assistant minister, thereby bringing the battle to the BN’s doorstep in a bid to wipe them clean in the south bank of the state capital.

To boost her campaign, her nomination was accompanied by none other than Penang Chief Minister Lim Guan Eng, with political secretary in tow.

Our posture was an offensive one as the constituency in question, Batu Kawah, has traditionally been a BN stronghold. We lined up our heavy artillery and proceeded to fire, night after night, entertaining Kuching with our well-choreographed ceramahs and our yellow-billed mascot that quickly became an overnight hit of mammoth proportions, far exceeding our expectations.
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Miracle if opposition forms simple govt

Joe Fernandez
Free Malaysia Today
April 16, 2011

The bottomline is that it must be about change and reform in the politics of the state.

Unless a miracle happens today at the polling booths, the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) has virtually sown up this state election with at least 30 seats “in the bag” even before polling begins. This figure, less than the magical but easily obtainable majority of 36 seats for BN in the State Legislaive Assembly, is based on reading the harsh realities on the ground and comparisons with the line-up of candidates in the 71 seats at stake.

The opposition is “assured” so far of 16 seats, that is, 14 to DAP – Bukit Kota against Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) being its “sole” remaining battle – and two PKR seats, namely Batu Lintang wrested from the Sarawak United People’s Party (SUPP) and Kerian from the Sarawak Progressive Democratic Party (SPDP).

The Chinese and urban community in Sarawak continues to form a solid vote bank against the alleged abuses and excesses of the Taib regime. Much of these votes are unlikely to budge despite a mixture of a few carrots and mostly sticks from SUPP, Chief Minister Taib Mahmud and Prime Minister Najib Tun Razak. Read the rest of this entry »


On the Ubah campaign trail (8)

Bersih 2.0 queries Sarawak for barring Ambiga’s visit (TMI)
Friday, April 15, 2011 5:14 PM

Deny BN 2/3 majority in Sarawak polls 2send powerful message 2all Sarawakians n Malaysians – “Tomorrow can be better!”
Friday, April 15, 2011 6:12 PM

On the Ubah campaign trail (7)
Friday, April 15, 2011 6:14 PM

1k ppl Meradong ceramah Bintangor – all expressed support 4re-election of Ting Tze Fui as Assembly rep 2continue 2represent Swkians 4change
Friday, April 15, 2011 9:20 PM
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A Mickey Mouse of an Election?

By Dr Francis Loh | Aliran

Dr Mahathir and other Malaysian political leaders have always claimed that Malaysia is a democracy on the basis that general elections are held regularly, every 4 to 5 years. However, due to the fact that Malaysian leaders have regularly resorted to coercive laws like the Internal Security Act, the Official Secrets Act, the Trades Union Act, Printing Presses and Publications Act, the Police Act, the UUCA, etc, to curb the civil liberties of their own citizens, it is more appropriately described as a ‘semi-authoritarian, semi-democratic country’, a ‘quasi democracy’, a ‘bureaucratic-authoritarian state’, a ‘statist-democracy’ etc., as some researchers have done.

Such labelling of Malaysia’s political system takes into account that although elections are held regularly, invariably, the ruling Barisan Nasional (BN) always wins, as it has done on all previous 12 general elections. It is well documented and proven that these elections are not ‘free and fair’. For apart from the gerrymandering of electoral boundaries every eight or so years to benefit the incumbent, the BN also resorts to the ‘3-Ms’ to guarantee its victory. The BN has control of the mainstream media. The BN has access to a huge amount of money for electoral purposes and outspends the Opposition every time. And the BN unashamedly utilises not only its own party machinery, but the government machinery – equipment, vehicles, halls, even staff – as well.
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Federal govt contesting Sarawak polls – not BN

By P Ramakrishnan | Aliran’s President

When power and position means everything, ethics can go to hell, every principle of the Rukun Negara can be totally discarded, pious religious edicts can be ignored with impunity – everything becomes subservient to greed and power.

We are witnessing the worst human behavior employed and deployed in the pursuit of political power. And to think that our national leaders are involved in this despicable conduct is really nauseating.

The Sarawak election should be a contest among political parties. This is the practice in mature democracies in the civilised world. What we are witnessing in Sarawak only confirms that we are not a democracy and our conduct is not civilised in keeping with the rule of law. Read the rest of this entry »


Just a matter of Taib for Sarawak polls

By Shannon Teoh
The Malaysian Insider
Apr 16, 2011

The election is a referendum on Taib’s 30-year rule. — File picANALYSIS, April 16 — Up to a million Sarawakians go to the polls today in what has become a referendum on Tan Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud’s 30 years as chief minister of Malaysia’s largest state.

As the country’s longest-serving head of government, the 74-year-old has been accused of being a corrupt nepotist and lauded for developing a state once covered with the world’s oldest rainforest.

Results from what Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Razak has called the stiffest contest in Sarawak’s history will tell us which narrative the Sarawak public really believes.

Seemingly, every issue — whether land grabs or corruption — that has been played up by the opposition over the 10-day campaign finds its final source in the Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) president. Read the rest of this entry »



Good evening Uncle Lim,

As a dawn of a new century will begin for Sarawak tomorrow and hopefully on Sunday, I would like to wish you Pakatan Rakyat members – DAP, PKR and PAS all the best and good luck to achieve another politcal tsunami. Although I’m in Australia studying, I’m still keeping track of news back home.

It’s good that all of you are being optimistic of the situation; again a word of caution – beware of the dirty tricks which are about to be played or are already in play. But by the end of the day, the kuasa rakyat or tsunami Part 2 will help to carry you to victory. I can see either the two happening; denying BN 2/3 majority in the assembly or taking over the Sarawak administration. Deep inside, I hope that PR will take both. Read the rest of this entry »