Latest salvo: Dr Jerip says if the current officebearers go ahead with the TDC without waiting for an official reply, then it would be like ‘a slap in the face of the ROS’.
KUCHING: There seems to be no end to the infighting in Sarawak Barisan Nasional component party SUPP.
The latest press release issued by its Bengoh chairman Datuk Dr Jerip Susil — the assistant minister is aligned to Datuk Seri Wong Soon Koh’s faction — disputed the party’s coming triennial delegates conference (TDC), during which party elections could be held.
“Reports that claim SUPP problems will be resolved by (president Tan Sri Peter) Chin’s faction convening the TDC is completely wrong,” Dr Jerip said in the statement sent to reporters.
“First, the Chin faction has no lawful authority to convene the TDC. Their elections in 2011 are still subject to the show-cause letter issued by the Registrar of Societies (ROS) and no final decision has been made by the ROS.”
Dr Jerip said if the current office-bearers went ahead with the TDC without waiting for an official reply, then it would be like “a slap in the face of the ROS”.
He claimed that the party would be placed in “greater danger of deregistration”.
He described Chin’s faction as “high presumptions” for assuming another TDC would “sweep the previous illegality under the carpet”.
Wong and Chin, along with their supporters, have been locked in a vicious tussle since before the last TDC.
Wong’s team were initially the only candidates for senior party posts. Chin, however, announced his presidency candidacy nearer the polls, with supporters including members of SUPP southern and northern regions.
At the eleventh hour of the party elections, Wong and his supporters pulled out, citing “irregularities”. Members aligned to Wong proceeded to lodge more than a dozen complaints against SUPP to the ROS.
It would seem Chin at the time of his ascendency to SUPP’s top post had the backing of the Federal Government, while Wong’s
faction was backed by the state government. In fact, the Wong team comprises state assemblymen and members of the state Cabinet.
Chin’s members were largely wiped out during last year’s General Election. By early this year, ROS deregistered Piasau and Bekenu branches in the northern region, and issued a show-cause letter to SUPP central.
“The party machinery has been completely under the control of the Chin’s faction since the supporters of Wong boycotted the 2011 TDC due to election fraud and irregularities of which complaints were lodged by 15 branches,” Dr Jerip said.
“There cannot and will not be a free and fair election in a TDC convened and controlled by one faction to the exclusion of the other faction.
“It is inconceivable that the Wong’s faction would even consider participating in such another tainted election process.”