PETALING JAYA: Barisan Nasional’s landslide victory in the 11th Sarawak state election was due to Tan Sri Adenan Satem’s personal popularity, says DAP secretary-general Lim Guan Eng (pic).
In a statement on Sunday, Lim congratulated the Sarawak chief minister on his triumph, adding that he hoped Adenan would fulfil the promises he made during his campaigning.
“DAP’s loss of five state seats out of the previous 12 seats was due to the personal popularity of Tan Sri Adenan.
“Tan Sri Adenan’s personal popularity overcame whatever unease at the barring of opposition leaders from Peninsular Malaysia into Sarawak and the extensive use of money politics,” he said.
Lim, who is also Penang Chief Minister, said that DAP would conduct a post-mortem on its results in the state elections, including its “failure to make any headway” in the rural Dayak seats.
He also said that Pakatan Harapan would have to work hard to restore public confidence in its ability to work together in against Barisan.
“We need to address the disappointment of our supporters, not just as a political party, but also as Pakatan Harapan.
“There is a need to strengthen the internal mechanisms within Pakatan Harapan so that agreements made must be respected and upheld,” said Lim
He said that another concern for the Opposition would if Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak were to take a leaf out of Adenan’s book for the 14th general election.
“The big challenge of Pakatan Harapan is whether Datuk Seri Najib dares to adopt the Tan Sri Adenan model by rejecting extremist and racist policies.
“Should Najib dare to do so, then Pakatan Harapan may face a fight for survival in the next general elections,” he said.
DAP only managed to win seven seats out of the 31 seats it contested in the Sarawak elections on Saturday, five seats short of the 12 seats it won in 2011.
Barisan, on the other hand, swept to a resounding win, taking 72 of the 82 seats as Chinese and urban voters swung back to the ruling coalition.
This gives Barisan more than the two-thirds majority that Pakatan had planned on preventing.