‘What’s the basis of banning me from Sarawak?’

Chua-Yee-Ling-sarawakPETALING JAYA: Kuala Sepetang PKR assemblywoman Chua Yee Ling has asked the Sarawak government to explain why she was asked to leave the state abruptly while she was attending a function in Miri last night.

In a statement today, she said she could not understand how she was a threat to national security and demanded an answer from Sarawak Chief Minister Abang Johari Openg. ‬

“What was the basis of banning and deporting me?”

She condemned the abuse of power by the state government.

“I fully respect Sarawak’s autonomy and power, but this responsibility must not be abused in this undemocratic, uncivilised and unprofessional manner.

“It is clearly a selective ban, a double standard that applies only to opposition political leaders.” ‬

Chua said she was invited by Sarawak PKR leaders to join three main programmes — visit an old folks home and orphanages, The Pink Diamond Dinner and the Purple Women’s Walk, held this morning.

‪At 8.30pm last night, she was abruptly picked up at The Pink Diamond Dinner, organised by Sarawak PKR, at the Miri Eastwood Valley Golf and Country Club, and directly deported back to Kuala Lumpur by Sarawak Immigration officials.‬

‪”I am shocked by the totally unnecessary deportation.

“I was in the middle of my speech when I was handed a written reminder saying, ‘5 minutes’.

“I thought it was a gentle time reminder from the organisers, but later realised there was already a group of immigration officials waiting for me below the stage.‬

“The emcee then shared the situation with the 2,000-strong crowd and called the leaders at the VIP tables to be on the stage with me.”

The fund-raising dinner was continued later by state DAP chief Chong Chieng Jen.‬

‪”I don’t blame the immigration officers because they are only carrying out their duties.

‪”As a young Malaysian leader, I have worked hard to see a Malaysian political culture that encourages healthy debate rather than unjust and unnecessary ‘No Entry’ bans.

“This incident has also made my resolve stronger. ‪Let’s not give up and keep up the fighting spirit!‬”

Chua, who entered Sarawak on Friday, is the third lawmaker from Peninsular Malaysia to be stopped from entering or staying in Sarawak yesterday.

PKR’s vice-president Nurul Izzah Anwar cancelled her plan to fly to Sarawak after two of their MPs, Zuraida Kamaruddin (Ampang) and Hee Loy Sian (Petaling Jaya Selatan) were denied entry when they landed in Miri at 2pm.

The Borneo Today news portal said the denial of entries came the same day Abang Johari told reporters that he would not stop Pakatan Harapan chairman Dr Mahathir Mohamad, DAP stalwart Lim Kit Siang and other PH leaders from entering the state today for their PH ceramah in Kuching.

Abang Johari said they were “not important” and should be allowed to enter because they were “not extremists”, the portal added.

It stated Nurul Izzah and Zuraida were already on the state’s immigration blacklist and were barred from the state since late last year.