Sarawak DCM says Kimanis polls outcome shows voters sensitive to unkept promises

Sulok Tawie
Tan Sri James Jemut Masing said the Pakatan Harapan federal government should take its Kimanis by-election loss positively to improve governance. — Picture by Sulok Tawie

KUCHING, Jan 19 — Barisan Nasional’s victory in yesterday’s Kimanis parliamentary by-election is an indication that Malaysian politics is very dynamic and its voters savvy about political nuances and unfulfilled electoral promises, Tan Sri James Masing said today.

But the Sarawak deputy chief minister, who is also president of Parti Rakyat Sarawak, said the Pakatan Harapan (PH) federal government should take its election loss positively to improve governance.

“The by election result may be a shock and a disappointment to the Pakatan Harapan federal government, but if they take their loss positively, then they should use their defeat to make them a better administrator to Malaysia,” he said when asked to comment on the outcome of the by-election.

He said the Malaysian voters deserve better than what PH has done in the last two years since taking federal power from BN.

Masing urged Prime Minister Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad and the federal ministers to stop blaming others but govern the country as they promised they would in the run-up to GE14.

“I am sure not all former BN leaders are devils, as not all PH leaders are angels. So please learn to forget and forgive and move forward to make Malaysia a better country for all,” he said.

BN’s Datuk Mohamad Alamin secured 12,706 votes to beat his sole rival, Parti Warisan Sabah’s Datuk Karim Bujang by 2,029 votes.

Karim obtained 10,677 votes.

Sarawak United People’s Party Youth chief Michael Tiang said he believes that the biggest factor contributing to a series of by-election defeats, the latest in Kimanis, is PH’s failure to deal with bread and butter issues.

“Instead, the Pakatan government is seen to be more interested in the colours of school shoes, flying cars and endless political in-fights among their leaders,” he claimed.

“The people cannot see what Pakatan government has done to salvage our economy and to reduce their burdens.

“With the abolition of Goods and Services Tax, the prices of goods have never dropped as promised, yet we are now asked to pay Sales and Service Tax and other new taxes like Departure tax, Digital Services tax and so on,” said Tiang, who is also a political secretary to the Sarawak chief minister.

“You cannot blame the public anger and disappointment which clearly expressed in the results in by-elections at Tanjung Piai and Kimanis that the Pakatan government has totally failed the people by making their life more miserable now,” he said.

In contrast, he said Sarawak government — led by the Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS) coalition — continues to focus on investing state funds in rural development which comprises 63 per cent of the total development expenditure in Sarawak.

He said the GPS state government has also launched infrastructure projects that aim to improve Sarawak’s economy.

Tiang said the GPS state government recently also introduced Kenyalang Gold Card for Sarawak senior citizens and special allowances for mothers and new babies.

“As for Chinese schools, the state government gives annual grants and it is still the only state government that recognises Unified Examination Certificate an entry qualification to enter the state civil service in Malaysia,” he said.

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