No rooms for VVIPs in Sarawak

  • Nation
  • Thursday, 12 Apr 2018

MIRI: With intensive campaigning for the general election ready to kick off soon, candidates from across the divide, especially in rural areas, are left to ponder over one major problem – accommodation.

Political parties in the state are at wits’ end trying to sort out this logistic issue for VVIPs ahead of the hectic period.

A party official said there was just not enough hotel rooms or even motels to cater to the number of VVIP campaigners.

It is learnt Sarawak Barisan Nasional leaders are making efforts to invite top guns such as Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak to campaign in certain hot seats like Baram.

“But we are facing a major dilemma to put up these VVIPs as there are simply not enough hotels,” said the official.

For example, in the Long Lama polling district located in the Telang Usan state seat, the main urban centre of Long Lama bazaar only has three shoplots that also double up as motels.

Barisan operations director for Telang Usan, Dennis Ngau, said they were making plans to invite the Prime Minister and several top guns to help campaign in Baram.

“But where are they going to stay for the night? Long Lama is a key polling district with a sizeable number of voters. There are only three shoplots with about 20 rooms.

“Usually, VVIPs are accompanied by a big entourage including senior officials and bodyguards,” said the Telang Usan assemblyman, adding that besides accommodation, transportation would also be a challenge.

Baram is made up of three state seats – Telang Usan, Marudi and Mulu.

So far, Ngau said they had yet to fix a suitable date for Najib’s visit to Baram.

But Najib is expected to fly down to Sarawak again before polling day and Ngau hopes to get him to visit the voters there.

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