DAP urges voters to consider impact of federal policies


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  • Thursday, 28 Jan 2016

DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng (seated right) speaking to reporters at Kuching City Mall. - ZULAZHAR SHEBLEE / The Star

KUCHING: Sarawakian voters should consider the impact of federal policies on their lives in making a decision at the ballot box, according to DAP.

The party’s secretary-general, Lim Guan Eng, said any policy made by the Federal Government, such as the Goods and Services Tax (GST), would ultimately have an effect on Sarawakians.

“Whether you like it or not, you are affected by GST. Another example is the depreciation of the ringgit. You cannot say this has not affected Sarawakians.

“If you want to bring about real change, you cannot work with the Federal Government because if you support federal policies, you will also suffer,” he told reporters at the launch of DAP’s Ubah campaign truck at Kuching City Mall on Tuesday night.

“That’s why I ask the people of Sarawak to support an alternative where we can work towards change, not only for Sarawak but for the country.”

Lim said this was DAP’s message to voters for the coming state election, widely expected to be held in March or April.

He said what Chief Minister Tan Sri Adenan Satem had done so far, including the 13 points agreed in the first round of devolution talks with the Federal Government, was “superficial”.

“Where is the increase in oil royalty to 20%? You talk about political rights, is Sarawak allow-ed to determine its own future by ensuring that civil service positions are filled by Sarawa-kians?

“Other rights as promised under the 18-point agreement when Sarawak entered the Malaysian Federation, are all these being fulfilled?”

Lim added that one of DAP’s concerns for the coming election was that the government would announce an increase in the oil royalty from 5% to 20% as had been requested by the state.

“That would be a very big blow to DAP and the Opposition. But we don’t mind facing that kind of setback provided Sarawakians can get more money,” he said.

He also urged Adenan to lift the entry ban on DAP leaders like Tony Pua and Teresa Kok, which would affect the party’s campaigning during the polls.

“In the last election both of them could enter Sarawak, why is it that this time they can’t? I’d like to take this opportunity to urge Adenan to respect democracy.

“Let’s have a clean fight and a fair contest. Don’t stop our leaders from coming in because you are forcing us to fight with our hands tied behind our backs,” he said.

On the issue of seat allocation with PKR, Lim said any disputed seats would be referred to the national leaders to be discussed together with state leaders.

However, he stressed that Sarawak DAP had the autonomy to decide on the number of seats to contest as well as its candidates.

“We hope to see whether we can combine our forces together. But at the same time, you must also respect DAP as a Sarawak party that has support from all communities, not just the Chinese.

“You must respect DAP’s Dayak leaders and they should be given the opportunity to contest in rural areas,” he said.



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