Hornbill Unleashed

February 23, 2011

Sarawak polls: PKR filters out ‘frogs’

Filed under: Alternatives,Keadilan — Hornbill Unleashed @ 12:00 AM
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Kuek Ser Kuang Keng

Following the departure of more than a dozen representatives and leaders from PKR, the party has tightened its selection criteria for candidates ahead of the Sawarak polls, to filter out potential ‘frogs’.

Deputy president Azmin Ali (below left), who is also the party’s election director, said Sawarak PKR has submitted a preliminary list of candidates to the top leadership.

azmin ali interview 220307 straight“We went through it last week but still need to review it. We will go through a screening process to make sure we do not experience the lompat (jumping ship) problem again,” he said when contacted yesterday.

Sarawak PKR chief Baru Bian, who is now screening the list, told Malaysiakini that there is no ‘black and white’ mechanism to judge the loyalty of potential candidates.

“We need to go deeper to personal knowledge of the person, background and past history, track record, inclination and association of the person, as well as commitment to the party.”

NONEBaru (right) pointed out that a crucial indicator is the potential candidate’s degree of economic dependency on the government and politically well-connected companies.

“Some people would be weakened or come under pressure because of business associations with the government,” he explained.

“You need to be personally aware and informed (about the potential candidate). Having said that, you still cannot be very certain but can only minimise the possibility of defections.”

Asked if it will be made mandatory for all assemblypersons to sign an undated resignation letter – to be triggered in the event of a defection – Baru said this will not be effective, as the legality of such documents can be challenged in court.

For instance, the federal court had dismissed the undated resignation letters pre-signed by the three Perak Pakatan Rakyat representatives who turned ‘BN-friendly’ Independents, resulting in the BN taking back the state government.

Sawarak PKR is therefore mulling another preventive measure – to get all candidates to sign a legal contract with the party that requires their loyalty throughout their term, failing which they will have to pay huge compensation to the party.

“Maybe that is a better way, but that idea is yet to be decided,” said Baru.

He stressed that such preventive measurements are just secondary steps, and that “the most important is still the screening process”.

MCLM pact with Snapazlan
In view of the defections, the newly-formed NGO Malaysian Civil Liberties Movement (MCLM) is scouting for ‘credible’ candidates to contest under Pakatan Rakyat parties, including in Sarawak.

But PKR strategy director Rafizi Ramli today said the MCLM candidates will have to join PKR and commit to the party’s struggle if they want to contest on its ticket.

Baru, meanwhile, said the MCLM has not approached him to discuss the candidacy issue.

“I have not heard anything from them. So it is a non-issue.”

MCLM has formed a  strategic link with opposition party Sarawak Nasional Party (Snap) which has joined Pakatan. However, details of the pact have yet to be announced.

The cooperation between MCLM and Snap has sparked speculation that MCLM may field its candidates under the Snap banner if it cannot reach agreement with PKR. This would strengthen Snap’s bargaining position in negotiating the seat allocation with PKR.

Snap has declared that it plans to contest in 28 Dayak-majority seats in the state polls. The date has not been announced, but the election must be conducted by July.

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4 Comments »

  1. why shoudl azmin be the one who’s ‘approving’ list…leave it to sarawakian1 see what happen to your choices of candidate to head pkr sabah…..everyone gose bust!

    yes…if pkr serious about an autonomy states…its should start now! sarawakian decide who’s the best person to represent them….

    Comment by HH2H — February 23, 2011 @ 12:22 PM | Reply

  2. Just to help a bit on “frogs”, most bussinessmen in politics are likely to become frogs for many reasons but mainly because bussinessmen are after money not positions and they have debts.

    Almost all PBB YBs are ex-government servants and most of them are approachable and personally helpful, especially those serving the poor rural people.

    A candidate must be fully financed by a political party inorder to make him/her feel guilty to become frog. If he/she is self-financed during election, what can a party say just because he/she was using the party symbol? Argument may arise whether such candidate has won because of the party symbol or because of his/her own credibility and popularity. Already rich candidates may finance themselves because rich YBs seldom become frogs but toads may be,hahaha….

    Comment by Ayen Piyat — February 23, 2011 @ 11:45 AM | Reply

    • “…Almost all PBB YBs are ex-government servants and most of them are approachable and personally helpful, especially those serving the poor rural people…”

      In general principle this is good and may not necessarily PBB’s. The PBB Yb’s, who are not corrupt who are scarce, largely depend on the stolen loot and abuses of their party bosses. Where will that end?

      Frogs are YBs who have problems which should bar them from active politics since they are the weak links and easily corruptible!

      Comment by Bomoh — February 23, 2011 @ 9:29 PM | Reply

  3. … “to get all candidates to sign a legal contract with the party that requires their loyalty throughout their term, failing which they will have to pay huge compensation to the party.

    “Maybe that is a better way, but that idea is yet to be decided,” said Baru. –

    Stories have it that the PR YBs defected to BN because they had personal problems like huge debts or are just greedy and get paid big time to defect. If you make them pay compensation on defecting, that should also not be a problem because the other party (with no end to their ill gotten money) will pay on their behalf. It all depends on the market demand.. for as long as YBs treat themselves like whores, and many do!

    There’s no way you can prevent defections with a mountain of rules. But there is one rule that you can apply to yourselves as leaders.. listen, listen, listen to your reps and don’t form a clique of “aides” around you as this will make your reps feel sidelined and make them vulnerable.

    What is Azmin doing ‘approving’ your candidate list? Didn’t he promised you autonomy? Baru with his fellow sarawakians should choose their sarawakian candidates, and that’s that. If Upin dan Ipin in KL need to approve the list first then their promise of autonomy is a lie and you should drop them. Enough of KL control whether its BN or PR. Thats why SNAP (Sarawak Negara Anda Punya)spirit is the real tonic for long suffering sarawakians. Alas, SNAP the party is not yet trustworthy.. sigh!!

    Comment by ibat — February 23, 2011 @ 8:55 AM | Reply


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