Tussle within Sarawak Pakatan over hot seats

  • Nation
  • Monday, 10 Aug 2020

MIRI: Sarawak Pakatan Harapan coalition partners are tussling over who will contest the "hot seats" in the looming 12th state elections.

There are disputing claims between Sarawak DAP and Sarawak PKR over hot seats in Kuching and Miri.

Sources told The Star that both DAP and PKR have laid claim to constituencies like Batu Lintang in Kuching and Senadin in Miri.

Sarawak PKR vice chairman Dr Teo Yu Keng said on Monday (Aug 10) that there are still overlapping claims.

"Yes, there are still some issues on the seat allocations that must be resolved. The overlapping claims are under intense discussions," said the Miri MP and also PKR national vice-president.

He said there was no quarrel within Sarawak Pakatan on seat allocation but they had to look at the candidate with the best chances of winning the hot seats.

The first two weeks of November have been mentioned as the possible window for a snap state election to be called in Sarawak.

Sources in Gabungan Parti Sarawak (GPS), the ruling state coalition, told The Star that Sarawak Chief Minister Datuk Patinggi Abang Johari Openg had spoken to the Election Commission on this but no date has been fixed yet for dissolution of the state assembly.

Sarawak is the only state that holds its state elections separately from parliamentary polls.

The current state assembly term ends in June next year.

However, uncertainties at national level is an excellent opportunity for Abang Johari and GPS to call for snap polls.

Sarawak has 82 state constituencies and 31 parliamentary seats.

Out of the 82 state seats, GPS has 68.

Sarawak DAP has seven, while PKR had three seats but the assemblymen left to join Parti Sarawak Bersatu (PSB, an independent political group) who previously had four but now have seven.

GPS component parties are Parti Pesaka Bumiputra Bersatu, Parti Rakyat Sarawak, Progressive Democratic Party and Sarawak United Peoples Party.

Out of the 31 Sarawak parliamentary constituencies, GPS has 18 seats, Pakatan (12 seats) and one Independent MP.

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