KUCHING: The splinter party of Teras is eyeing at least eight seats for the coming state election but will leave the decision to Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem.
President Tan Sri William Mawan said Teras, an offshoot of SPDP, was looking at the five seats currently held by its incumbents along with Ba’Kelalan, Krian and Meluan.
In addition, he said the party was closely monitoring the 11 new state seats proposed in the Election Commission’s redelineation exercise.
Teras’ assemblymen are Mawan himself (Pakan), Datuk Peter Nansian (Tasik Biru), Datuk Sylvester Entri (Marudi), Rosey Yunus (Bekenu) and Paulus Palu Gumbang (Batu Danau).
They won their seats on the SPDP ticket in the last state election but quit the party to join Teras following an internal dispute last year. All except Paulus are also ministers or assistant ministers and remain in the state Cabinet under the Barisan Plus formula.
“Our candidates, the five of us, are fully entrenched. We are the serving assemblymen, the incumbents. We are winnable on the basis of being the incumbents.
“So the seats belong to us for the time being until we lose them,” Mawan told reporters after meeting 30 new members from Kabong at Teras headquarters here yesterday.
But when asked whether Teras would contest in eight seats, he said he left it to Adenan to decide.
“I will not answer how many seats we will contest. It’s all in the hands of the Chief Minister,” he said.
He also said Teras would not contest as independents against Barisan Nasional if it was not allocated the seats it was eyeing.
“We do not have a separate agenda. We sink or swim or with the decision of the Barisan leadership. There is no other option but Barisan, otherwise our members will get confused,” he said when asked whether Teras would clash head-on with SPDP in the coming polls.
All eight seats eyed by Teras have also been claimed by SPDP as they were allocated to the latter in the previous state election.
Mawan also said Teras had not yet officially applied to join Barisan as its leaders had never left the coalition and were accepted in the state Cabinet.
He said the party’s acceptance as a Barisan coalition member was a “formality” which could be taken care of later.
“With regard to the fact that we are doing our job because we are the government, we are part of Barisan, I think that has been confirmed by the Chief Minister and the Prime Minister, who are state and Federal Barisan leaders.
“With regard to the formality of being accepted fully by consensus, it can come later. There is no immediate necessity at the moment because we have never left Barisan and we have been serving just like any other ministers,” he said.