Sarawak a different political mix altogether


KUCHING: If you think there are parallels between the outcome of the just concluded Malacca state election and the upcoming 12th Sarawak election results, think again.

This is due to a number of fundamental differences between Sarawak and Malacca, according to Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) political scientist Prof Dr Jayum Jawan.

“Sarawak is multi-ethnic and plural, whereas Malacca has a Malay majority.

“Sarawak also has a stable ruling coalition but Malacca had witnessed a leadership disarray that had seen the emergence of three parties’ dominance between Barisan Nasional (BN)-Umno; Perikatan Nasional (PN)-Parti Pribumi Bersatu Malaysia (Bersatu); and Pakatan Harapan (PH)-Parti Keadilan Rakyat (PKR) and Democratic Action Party (DAP).

“In Sarawak, the GPS is intact and a solid coalition whereas the opposition forces here are more disunited and disoriented than those in Malacca,” he said in a statement on Sunday (Nov 21).

In addition, Jayum stated that Malaya-based and Malaya-dominated parties do not have serious contenders nor supporters in Sarawak.

“Their supporters are primarily former members of other local political parties from which they had been kicked out.

“They joined either the Parti Sarawak Bersatu (PSB), the Parti Bumi Kenyalang (PBK), or the Parti Bansa Dayak Sarawak Baru (PBDSB) just to make noise – as the Iban say, ‘enggau ngerohka ai aja’ which translates to merely muddying the water only.

“They are aware that they are spent forces whose time has passed but still refuse to go away like statesmen,” he added.

On the outcome of the polls, Jayum revealed that he had expected the Malacca polls to see a Malay political consolidation.

“However, I was surprised that BN-Umno was chosen as the political platform for Malay consolidation.

“I had thought for a moment that the Malay political consolidation would most likely be behind Bersatu, but definitely not PH-PKR.

“So, while I was partially correct about political consolidation, I was completely wrong about who the likely benefactor would be,” he explained.

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