KLANG: The Selangor DAP election, scheduled to be held during the first week of June, is expected to be an explosive affair.
With the current apparent split in the party, groups aligned to various leaders are expected to slug it out to be in the 15-member state committee.
According to a Selangor party insider, the battle will be very intense because it is a fight for political survival.
“This time the fight will be between the old-timers and the elitists.
“The old-timers and their support are strongly convinced that the party’s elitists had forgotten DAP’s ideology once they came into power," he said.
A Selangor assemblyman from DAP, meanwhile, said it would be more apt to say the fight was between the old-timers and the elected representatives.
He added that most of the state’s elected representatives, except for a few, were in the second group which he referred to as the YB (Yang Berhormat) group.
“One must understand that all MPs and assemblymen have big followings and I am sure this will ensure the YB group does well," he added.
He added this was in line with the party’s current direction and image.
A party leader said the grassroots members were fuming that the party’s "elitist" leaders had appeared to be in agreement when the previous government wanted to introduce Jawi in vernacular schools.
“They are also miffed that in spite of DAP being in power for (almost) two years, the Unified Examination Certificate (UEC) is still not recognised," said the grassroots leader.
He added that grassroots members also saw red when financial allocations to Tunku Abdul Rahman University College (TAR UC) were slashed during Pakatan Harapan’s short tenure as the Federal Government.
“A large number of students from Chinese New Village and B40 families attended these two universities.
“Their parents cannot afford to send them to fancy colleges and TAR UC and Universiti Tunku Abdul Rahman (UTAR) provided them with the education they needed.
“So when funding was slashed, our grassroots members became very angry as this went against the DAP’s ideology," he said.
Another Selangor DAP leader, who is an elected representative, said what happens in the Johor party polls scheduled for early May will foreshadow the way things turn out in Selangor.
He added that Selangor managed to remove its state chairman Tony Pua, supposedly from the elitist group, in the last party polls while Johor is currently attempting to remove its state chairman Liew Chin Tong, who is also perceived as being in the same group.
Another Selangor DAP member, also an elected representative, said the fight was between the party’s old-timers as well as the new group that emerged in 2008.
“The old-timers are emotionally tied to the party and were there from the beginning supporting DAP’s struggles," he said.
However, in 2008, the elitist group made its appearance in the party and literally cut out the old loyalists, he claimed.
However, another DAP assemblyman said the old-timers must understand the party has evolved and must no longer be identified as a party solely for the Chinese but instead as a Malaysian party for all races.
“That is what our YB group is fighting to establish and I hope the old-timers will be able to see this," he added.
The assemblyman also said he hoped that grassroots members would not be misled by propaganda and accept that changing with the times was crucial for party stability.