Hornbill Unleashed

March 1, 2014

Did Taib hold Najib to ransom with Sarawak seats

Taib NajibAwang Abdillah

Sarawak with its 25 parliament seats helped BN get a simple majority in the last election and there are fears that Taib may withdraw the seats

Under the federal constitution the appointment of the Sarawak Yang DiPertua Negeri is vested in the Yang DiPertuan Agong.

As Prime Minister, the coveted post then is Najib Tun Razak’s trump card when dealing with the state government of Sarawak.

Since the 13th GE , Putrajaya has been wary of Umno-Barisan Nasional’s dependence on the parliamentary seats delivered by Sarawak and Sabah.

Both states delivered  25 and 22 seats respectively out of the total of 133 BN seats.

Opposition Pakatan Rakyat garnered a total of 89 seats and only nine seats collectively came from Sarawak and Sabah

Off the 222 seats in parliament, BN in Peninsular Malaysia secured only 86 seats.

This was 26 seats short of attaining a simple majority of 112. So Umno-BN was significantly depended on  Borneo’s 47 seats.

Borneo’s 47 seats has become a game changer and the trump card tht can be used any time before the 14th GE.

Umno-led Putrajaya’s fear was what if the Rahman Yakub and Taib Mahmud dynasty decide to use the 25 BN parlaimentary seats to switch sides thereby swinging the balance in favour of Pakatan enabling it to achieve a majority with 114 seats (89+25). BN will then be left with 108 seats (133-25) and a minority government.

The Sabah BN is secure and under the control of Umno-BN state government .

The untouched Rahman -Taib dynasty would not augur well for the survival of Umno and the federation of Malaysia in the long term.

Thereby Umno’s  long term plan is to move in to Sarawak in order to control the political affairs of the state.

But to do that it must first remove the powerful family dynasty.

On June 29  2013, Najib made a tactical move to pressure Taib to resign through MACC’s exposure of the 400 files of the latter’s wrong doings.

Najib’s trump card

Then Putrajaya extended the tenure of the current Sarawak Governor only until Feb 28 this year giving Taib limited time to manoeuvre his move.

The tactic would force Taib to surrender his CM post first before  Feb 28 if he wants to be appointed to the governor. Taib gave up his Balingian state seat today.

However his appointment as the new head of state after Feb 28 has been be shrouded by  uncertainty.

The federal-state situation was such that anyone could be appointed at the 11th hour since the two positions were unrelated.

For the first time Sarawak celebrated its Independence anniversary from Britain on July 22  2013 after the MACC announced investigations.

Then on Sept 16, 2013 Sarawak celebrated for the first time on a grand scale the anniversary of the formation of Malaysia.

These two events clearly sent the message to the federal government that Sarawak was an independent nation when it joined other states to form the federation of Malaysia on in 1963 and that Taib is the chief minister of Sarawak in his own right.

Putrajaya was stunned by these moves.

Subsequent to that an online group called the Sarawak Sovereignty Movement(SSM) that called for independence from Malaya became active. This was another attempt by Taib to obtain more bargaining power.

It is logical then to conclude that any attempt by the federal government to act against Taib or deny him the governor’s post would be blocked by a pullout of the 25 parliamentary seats thereby reducing Umno-BN federal government to a nonenity.

He could have also threatened to withdraw Sarawak from the federation.

Hence Najib has put on hold any attempt to execute his masterstroke.

Taib’s ascension to the governor’s post is not going to stop the long arm of the law. In fact it could be a short tenure for Taib if there is a strong ground to invalidate his appointment.

1 Comment »


    Comment by Geronimo Miller — March 5, 2014 @ 11:58 AM | Reply

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