Friday, April 09, 2010

Sibu hunts a head

And before the 10th is even open for nominations, we get news of another looming by-election.

This time it is in Sibu, Sarawak. And a politically significant one it is too, since the Sarawak state elections are soon due, and both Pakatan and Barisan have been talking up their chances of taking the state.

For Pakatan, it is important that they make some inroads into east Malaysia, for they would need that should they harbour any hopes of forming a federal government. For BN, its a barometer of how they have managed to shore down their strength since the losses of March 2008.

Central to all of this would be were Taib Mahmud throws his weight, which for now is firmly behind BN. Nevertheless even the PM knows that he still needs to take into account Taib's considerations (read: interests) in the matter before seeing it as a done deal.

The Sibu by-election will thus serve as an indicator of how state elections will go. One would expect the DAP to play a significant role here, given their long time presence in both the seat and the state. However, the hawks in PKR may insist to have this done their way, which to be sure will test the loose coalition's cohesion. One wonders if we will have a repeat of 2008, when a PKR candidate stood against his coalition partner from the DAP, against the late Robert Lau from SUPP.

In any case, one would think that Sibu will have a bigger import than Hulu Selangor, with the bigwigs from both PR and BN making their presence felt.

The federal seats from Sarawak are important, if PR ever hopes to win a Parliamentary majority. While BN's dominance in Sabah and Sarawak saved their rear ends in 2008, they cannot hope for this to always be the case, especially since Ku Li is still stirring up the distribution of oil profits.

It is a well known fact that the profits from oil found in Sarawakian territories is largely used to fund projects in the peninsular. However, if one were to be in Kuching, the development and economic growth is something which would surprise you.

So, would the oil issue play a major role in this by-election ? Will Ku Li be a thorn in BN's side in the run up ? Will DAP's Fuzhou coterie in Sibu be able to pull off a win when they've failed in the past ?

Siber Party of Malaysia (M) will soon meet to see if we should throw our hat into the fray. After all, we do have a competent Fuzhou in our ranks, even if he is mostly silent and on a pork eating frenzy. SiPM (M) believes that even if the Chinese make up 60% of Sibu, the Melanau and Iban people are significant enough to play a role. Time for them to speak up and to be heard, and SiPM (M) will gladly do that if provided adequate amounts of tuak and langkau.

Sarawak is not all about oil and logging. The other natural and cultural treasures it has should also be made known, and we at SiPM (M) will promise to bring more tuak and langkau into the peninsular, thus assisting the Sarawakian economy, should we be elected.

For as we said, either way, we still need good candidates bearing fresh eggs, even if headhunters they may be.

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