Those who quit PKR and DAP in Sabah argue that only a local party can better fight for the state, noted DAP Sarawak Chairman Chong Chieng Jen in a statement posted on Facebook.
“Such an argument was similar to the Barisan Nasional’s (BN) age-old claim that ‘only a Malay can fight for Malay rights’ or ‘only a Chinese can fight for Chinese rights’,” he added.
In fact, stressed Chong who is also Bandar Kuching MP and Kota Sentosa Assemblyman, “it has been shown that racism was the most divisive element in Malaysia”.
The BN parties are resorting to regionalism to further divide the people, he charged.
Chong described those who recently quit PKR and DAP in Sabah “under the pretext of local party” sentiments, as “opportunists”. He believes the “local party” regionalism politics was just another form of “divide-and-rule” used by the ruling party to consolidate its position.
History has also shown, he recalled, that it was the so-called local parties in Sarawak that sold out the state’s rights to the Federal Government. “They are the ones who signed away Sarawak’s oil and gas rights.”
“They put an end to English education in Sarawak. “
They approved the lop-sided annual development fund against Sarawak’s interest, said Chong.
The local parties in Sabah are no better than their counterparts in Sarawak, he continued.
He reminded there was a time that Sabah was ruled by local parties. At the end, said Chong, for some personal interest, the leaders of these local parties joined the BN and exploited the people of Sabah. “Sabah is the poorest state in Malaysia.”
The worth of a political party depends not on whether it was racially or regionally based, he argued. “It depends on the party’s ideology, track record and struggle for the people.”
After all, he asked, hasn’t Sarawak all this while been governed by Sarawakians? “Hasn’t Sabah been governed by Sabahans?”
For that matter, he stressed, hasn’t Malaysia been governed by Malaysians?
Yet, said Chong, “we see the deterioration of the state of affairs and rising corruption in Malaysia, and in Sabah and Sarawak”.
Throughout the history of Malaysia, reminded the MP, Umno has been using race to consolidate its power.
“Now, BN in Sabah and Sarawak are trying to use the regionalism sentiment to consolidate its power in the states,” he lamented. “They are trying to divert the attention of fellow Sarawakians and Sabahans from corruption and cronyism in the states.”
FMT Reporters Online