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Umno ‘intrusion’ angers Sarawak PBB

 | May 14, 2011

Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu has warned Umno to stay out of Sarawak or face unprecedented losses in the general election.

KUCHING: In a stinging slap, Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu told Umno to ‘focus on their affairs in West Malaysia and Sabah’ and butt-out of Sarawak matters.

Party vice president Daud Abdul Rahman said: “Just let PBB and its partners in state BN take care of their own backyard.”

He said Umno’s presence in Sarawak will only contribute to more ‘splits and instability’.

“If Umno is sincere, I advise them to strengthen their position in West Malaysia.

“But if they (Umno) insist on spreading the wings to Sarawak without the state BN’s approval then a split among the people is inevitable and BN will lose big, ” he warned.

He said the recent state election had proved that PBB still had the electorates support.

PBB won all 35 seats it contested in the April 16 election.

Its coalition partners Parti Rakyat Sarawak (PRS) and Sarawak Progressive Democratic Party (SPDP) lost one and two seats respectively.

The worst hit was Sarawak United Peoples Party (SUPP) which lost 13 seats to the opposition Pakatan Rakyat coalition.

Daud’s comments is seen as a terse warning to Umno which has been trying to muscle into Sarawak since 2008 general election when the party-led BN coalition met with historical losses.

BN lost five states in the 12th general to Pakatan. BN then grabbed Perak in a reverse-takeover

Angry PBB leaders

During the recent state election Umno members led by president Najib Tun Razak rained down on Sarawakians after fears that growing hatred for Chief Minister Taib Mahmud’s policies and excesses would cost Sarawak BN its two-third majority.

Dismissing Taib’s assurance, Najib had himself camped in Sarawak for six days before polls to ensure a respectable win.

Pre-poll ground reports of Taib’s team lagging behind however turned out to be a false alarm when PBB delivered 100% on seats contested putting Najib and his motley crew firmly in their place.

In recent weeks, sources within the PBB ranks here have hinted that post-election analysis had blammed Umno’s presence in Sarawak as the reason for the higher percentage of votes for the opposition.

On Wednesday Umno Batu Pahat member Ibrahim Jeman ruffled feathers in PBB corridors when he voiced his interest in recruiting Sarawakians as Umno members.

He had proposed doing this through valid Umno branches in West Malaysia, a strategy different from the existing Umno supporters group or JPUNS.

Seeing red, Daud slammed Ibrahim’s suggestion saying PBB was ‘stronger than ever’ and that Umno should stay out of Sarawak affairs.

“We (PBB) still have the strong support of the people. PBB won in all 35 seats.

“Umno should take care of people in West Malaysia and win big in the next general election.

“We will strive to strengthen BN in Sarawak through PBB,” he said amidst widely rumoured speculations of Umno leaderships’ hand being behind rumours of infighting within the PBB youth wing.

Rumours of incessant bickering between supporters of PBB Youth leader Fadillah Yusuf, who is deputy science, technology and innovation minister, and backers of Abdul Karim Hamzah, chief political secretary to Chief Minister Taib Mahmud over Umno Youth chief Khairy Jamaluddin’s call for Taib to step down has been firing up the political grapevine.

Fadillah has refused to bow to calls to openly condemn Khairy’s remarks, giving room for claims that he is an Umno-lackey. The label has irked Fadillah’s supporters.

A concerned Daud had last week warned that the continued infighting and rumours of factions would plunge the party into disunity.


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