KUCHING: Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) does not think that two of five newly registered political parties are really sincere when declaring their pro-Barisan Nasional (BN) stance.
It (PRS) knows because of the bad experience with Sarawak Workers Party (SWP).
SWP, registered prior to the last general election, immediately declared itself BN-friendly but then insisted in contesting in all PRS six parliamentary seats.
Had SWP won all the seats it would have replaced PRS in the BN fold.
The party (SWP) however lost in all seats and now had no other option but to join forces with the state Democratic Action Party.
PRS president Tan Sri Dr James Masing, when contacted yesterday, implied that SWP together with the newly registered Parti Tenaga Rakyat Sarawak (Teras) and Parti Bansa Dayak Sarawak Baru (PBDS Baru) were probably a confused lot.
He believed that they were leaning towards the opposition and what they were doing now was to get all the publicity and ground support they could get.
“Opposition parties which declare themselves Barisan Nasional (BN)-friendly do not actually know what they want. They only want to be noticed for the little publicity they could get,” he said.
Engkilili assemblyman, Dr Johnical Rayong, who heads SUPP Engkilili division, meanwhile said Teras and PBDS Baru wanted to be known as BN-friendly because BN was more saleable to the people compared to any of the opposition parties like PKR and DAP.
“Most supporters and sympathisers of Teras and PBDS Baru are former BN supporters. We know most of them and they still have the BN mentality and mindset.
“Secondly, they know that only the BN government can help the people in terms of human and infrastructure development.”
Parti Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) secretary-general Datuk Dr Stephen Rundi is more straightforward. He said the groups behind the new parties in Sarawak were either a rejected lot or not accepted by any of the state BN component parties. Dr Rundi, who is also state BN secretary, however said BN would welcome and was opened to any genuine and sincere supporters or members of the coalition into the BN family.
State PKR liaison officer, Baru Bian, meanwhile said the promoters and sponsors of Teras and PBDS Baru were opportunists.
“When they say they are BN-friendly they are in fact not serious. They are opportunists. They should be joining PRS, SPDP, PBB or SUPP rather than starting new parties,” said Baru, who is also Ba Kelalan assemblyman.
Baru’s colleague in the state PKR, See Chee How, said the sudden emergence of new political parties spoke of the onerous struggle of the opposition parties in Sarawak but was also a testimony of leadership infighting in the state BN.
“These pseudo BN party hopefuls are not born yesterday. They are former members of the BN family who appreciate the BN government machinery and enormous financial resources to triumph all previous elections in Sarawak,” said the Batu Lintang assemblyman and state PKR vice-chairman.
“The immediate reaction of PBDS Baru and Teras to be BN friendly is testimony of their peculiar political realism. It also exposes the leadership infighting within the BN component parties, that leaders in these new parties are seeing themselves as better alternatives to existing leaders in the BN,” See added.
Apart from Teras and PBDS Baru, the other new parties are Parti Ekonomi Rakyat Sarawak Bersatu (PERSB), Peace Party and Parti Bumi Kenyalang. - theborneopost