BN-Dayak leaders’ failure a boost for DAP

by Joseph Tawie
Free Malaysia Today

A senior lecturer in Unimas describes Sarawak DAP’s move to establish a Dayak think-tank as a ‘concrete and pragmatic’ approach in winning over Dayak support.

KUCHING: The failure of Dayak leaders to highlight the Dayak community’s problems in Parliament and in the Sarawak Legislative Assembly has been described as a key reason for the opposition DAP’s bid to form the Dayak Consultative Council (DCC).

According to DCC head John Brian, Dayak leaders in Barisan Nasional had proven to be ineffective.

He said the ruling BN having been in power for almost 50 years was less responsive to the voices of the people when compared to the DAP.

He described DAP as a more ‘progressive and democratic” party which can see issues from another perspective.

“Although there are Dayak elected representatives in Parliament and the state assembly, the Dayak community still needs DAP to highlight pertinent issues affecting them,” he said when introducing the new DCC members to the press over the weekend.

The council was set up during a recent forum held in Selangor by DAP.

The council is expected to advise the DAP on issues pertaining to the Dayak community as well as to bring all Dayaks working in Peninsular Malaysia together.

Brian said that DCC will soon meet with the locals in major cities and towns with the aim of seeking their views on issues as well as encouraging them to form sub-committees.

“These sub-committees will become the wings of the council. Anyone could be a member of the committee.

“They do not necessarily have to be DAP members,” he said.

He said thus far responses from Dayak community has been good towards the formation of DCC.

Only the Dayak leaders in the BN have refused to comment.

Concrete move
BN-partner Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) president James Masing, when contacted via text message failed to respond. Likewise his party secretary-general Wilfred Nissom too failed to respond.

Sarawak’s lead-political party Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) deputy information chief Peter Minos, who is known for his harsh criticisms, also failed to respond.

Meanwhile, Jeneri Amir, a senior lecturer in the faculty of social science at University Malaya Sarawak described DAP’s move as “concrete and pragmatic”.

He said it would ensure that DAP wins the hearts and minds of the Dayaks.

“Based on the results of the state election, firstly DAP had reached almost the maximum performance in the Chinese areas.

“In order to have more impact on Sarawak politics, DAP needs to expand its influence in other areas especially the Dayak areas.

“I think one of the best steps taken is to establish this think tank, and DAP fully realises there is quite a big and significant support among the Dayaks in the last election between 30% to 34%.

“This gives DAP some kind of confidence. With proper planning and strategy, DAP can win more Dayaks to support it.

“I believe that with this think-tank which comprises intellectuals and strategists, DAP is very realistic and pragmatic.

“This is the way forward,” Jeneri said.

  1. #1 by sheriff singh on Monday, 1 August 2011 - 12:01 pm

    ‘BN-Dayak leaders’ failure a boost for DAP’. I am not so sure about this.

    Does this mean the DAP can now freely and easily enter the long houses and win votes?

    DAP leaders must adopt a longhouse each (at least) and win them over. Sit down and drink with them, tokok with them and maybe they will adopt you as their own. Then maybe, maybe….

  2. #2 by Winston on Monday, 1 August 2011 - 12:11 pm

    Uncle Lim, well done!
    Go all out to woo the natives in East Malaysia.
    However, do not forget to launch forays into the hinterlands of
    West Malaysia which are supposed to be the strongholds of
    the BN.
    Whack them from all angles!

  3. #3 by loveandgratitude on Monday, 1 August 2011 - 12:17 pm

    Way to go for DAP Sarawak after the historic Win in the State Election.
    DAP pragmatic and consultative approach in East Msia is much better than PKR and will be able to win the Dayaks’ hearts and mind.

    DAP should rightly LEAD PR in Sarawak and NOT PKR!

  4. #4 by tak tahan on Monday, 1 August 2011 - 12:56 pm

    DAP has been taking the best steps for Dayaks in Sarawak meanwhile PKR and PAS should work harder in malay rural area.Keep the momentom going till we kick BN’s butt out from Putrajaya.

  5. #5 by Bigjoe on Monday, 1 August 2011 - 3:33 pm

    I would even go so far as say that DAP Sarawak should declare its ideological goal to turn itself into a Dayak-based party i.e., the ideal goal is to have so many Dayaks join it that eventually it will be led and run by Dayaks. The Chinese in DAP Sarawak should be willing to step aside, when the Dayaks are capable to run the party

  6. #6 by Sallang on Tuesday, 2 August 2011 - 5:54 pm

    DAP is not a Chinese party. So all Dayak youths are welcome to join. A time will come when a Dayak youth will take the lead for their community.
    However, if the coming elections will be just several months away, what are we waiting for.
    Start the ‘War Dance’ in Sarawak.

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