Thursday, 27 March 2014

‘Opposition not welcomed in Balingian’

SIBU: The opposition can expect to be given a cold shoulder despite having heavy weights campaigning for them in the Balingian by-election.

State BN secretary-general Datuk Dr Stephen Rundi said this when reacting to PKR Balingian by-election campaign director See Chee How’s statement that the state PKR would be stepping up its campaign for its candidate Abdul Jalil Bujang by holding a series of ceramah at different locations.

Rundi said yesterday that opposition leaders, especially those from outside Sarawak, were unwelcomed by the majority of Balingian people.

See, who is state PKR vice-chairman, revealed that talks would be given in villages, longhouses and Mukah town by 10 PKR, DAP and PAS heavy weights including PKR advisor Datuk Seri Anwar Ibrahim, strategy director Rafizi Ramli and Tan Sri Ibrahim Khalid.

Rundi, who is Assistant Minister of Public Utilities (Electricity and Telecommunications), said the BN was fully aware of the opposition’s game plan.

“We are on the ground and know their every activity,” he said.

Meanwhile Chief Political Secretary to the Chief Minister, Abdullah Saidol said everybody in Balingian constituency knew who these PKR leaders from the peninsula were, and their empty rhetoric.

Abdullah was asked if the many senior PKR leaders from the peninsula coming to Balingian to assist their candidate would pose a threat to BN by increasing PKR’s chances of winning the by-election.

The opposition, he said, assumed they knew better what the people in Balingian wanted.

“Some people gather to hear their campaign because it is entertaining to see a leader with celebrity status for the wrong reason.

“They criticise everything we do for the benefit of the people, and they make promises that they can’t even fulfill in Selangor to this day,” said Abdullah who is Semop assemblyman.

He said: “We are not too worried about their presence but continue from day to day to concentrate on strengthening our campaign strategy and coordination.

“We want registered voters in Balingian to go all out to exercise their constitutional right.”

The by-election is a straight fight between Yussibnosh Balo of PBB/BN and Abdul Jalil of PKR.

In the 10th state election, Pehin Sri Abdul Taib Mahmud, who vacated the seat to become the Head of State, won with a majority of 5,154 votes.

Datuk Salleh Jafaruddin, who stood on an independent ticket polled 1,056 while PKR first timer Suriati Abdullah, 871 votes. - theborneopost

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