MIRI: It is a common practice in Party Pesaka Bumiputera Bersatu (PBB) to retain an assemblyman or parliamentarian for at least two terms unless the person is completely ineffective.
PBB deputy president Datuk Amar Johari Tun Openg disclosed this yesterday in Bekenu, thus quashing all rumours and speculations that Sibuti Member of Parliament Ahmad Lai Bujang is going to be replaced before the coming 13th parliamentary election.
Johari, who is also Housing and Tourism Minister, said Ahmad had performed very well, and so there was no reason to replace him.
The final decision would still be made by the top Barisan Nasional leaders - the Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak and Pehin Sri Datuk Abdul Taib Mahmud, he said.
PBB president, Taib, has in not so many words indicated that Ahmad would be a candidate in the coming parliamentary election.
Nevertheless, rumours have it again that Ahmad would be replaced because the people want younger local leader preferably a Kedayan or Jatti Miriek.
Ahmad, who is originally from Sarikei, is of Malay-Melanau parentage, and lives in Miri.
Johari said all the elected leaders of the area - Ahmad, Early Childhood and Family Development Assistant Minister Rosey Yunus, and Lambir assemblyman Ripin Lamat - must work as a team.
“We must give Ahmad, a one-term MP, at least another term to ensure there is continuity in leadership and development planning for the area,” said Johari.
Ripin, a Sibuti local, is often mentioned as the preferred candidate to replace Ahmad although he has firmly denied it. Ripin, who replaced Datuk Aidan Wing, won Lambir seat in last year’s state election.
Both Ahmad and Ripin are PBB members. Rosey is from Sarawak Progressive Democratic Party (SPDP) but has resigned to stay with the infamous SPDP Five.
She is currently with Sarawak BN Club.
“One of the virtues of being a good leader is having patience. Do not be in a hurry to go to the top because if you do so you will make bad decision which will not only affect you but others as well,” advised Johari.
“There are groups that are out to disunite you. Do not let them create dissension among you becauseunity is the key to better livelihood and living environment.
“Everyone must work as a team; the people, government, and appointed leaders. Ahmad, Rosey and Ripin have worked well as a team as reflected by the various development projects in Bekenu and Sibuti,” Johari added.