SUPP Moving Forward

SUPP moving forward

The party positively appears to be on the inclination to move forward as indicated by recent events.

During the recent (November) SUPP Annual Delegates Conference Party President Dr Sim, in his keynote address, said that the focus of the party should be to gain financial independence and increase the number of members to add up the current 109,000 SUPP members.

The party currently have 82 SUPP branches all over the state and he advised member to groom members both within and outside party, be the best involved in ground work, as well as possessing political and administrative skills.

Stressing on the coming 14th General Election, Dr Sim reminded members they must unite and go to the ground to speak up on behalf of the society.

Adding to his President’s advice, secretary-general Dato Sebastian urged party members to not rest on their laurels even after achieving positive results from the last 11th State Election in May, reminding them that they will have to start preparing now as they may one day be its leaders.

Ting reminded that they should recognise and acknowledge that the people of Sarawak gave the Party another chance with their votes in the last state election. This is clearly indicated when the party managed to win back the four seats that were earlier under DAP namely Batu Kawah, Repok, Meradong and Piasau.

The elected YBs must work even harder in making sure all promises made during the campaign are fulfilled before the next (State) Election in 2021. This time around, the people have given the party the trust and confidence to represent them in DUN and we should seize this chance seriously and must not let them down.

In order to move forward, the party should now look at the pertinent issues that they should concentrate on.

The first one on the list should be Education – The importance of English must be recognised as it is the international language for communication, knowledge and for business.  The Chief Minister fully understands this and had decided that English would be the second official language for Sarawak. In addition, the state Government has set the target of having 90% of Sarawakian teachers in all schools by the year 2018.  SUPP is fully supportive of these decisions.

The next issue the party should stress on is the coming Parliamentary Elections.  The Party has always been allocated 7  Parliamentary Seats, namely, Bandar Kuching (P195), Stampin (P196), Serian (P199), Sarikei (P208), Lanang (P211), Sibu (P212) and Miri (P219).  Based on the last Sarawak Election results and with the present Party unity, the hard work of YBs and members, and the support by the general public, the party should be looking forward to perform better than in the previous PRU 13 where only one seat was won.

It is important that the party must have more and capable representatives in the national platform to contribute in the law making and administration of the Federation. Another important responsibility will be to ensure future laws or policies made by the Federal Government must be consistent to the Malaysia Agreement 1963 and proper consultation must be sought with the Sarawak Government all the times especially when it involves Sarawak’s Special Rights.

Party members should perceive that this coming GE14 is about asserting Sarawak’s status in Malaysia as equal partner to Malaya, defending our nation from religious extremism and most importantly getting the complete financial allocation for that we are entitled to as agreed in the Malaysia Agreement.  In safeguarding the interest of Sarawak, the Party’s fight does not end in Sarawak DUN only but to be fought in the national platform as well.

One of the issues is concerning Sarawak’s status in Malaysia. Sarawak’s status was downgraded because of the passing of a list of Federal Constitution amendments named Act A354 in 1976.   Then there was this introduction of Federal Law Act 750: Territorial Sea Act 2012 that reduced Sarawak’s territorial waters from 200 nautical miles to just 3 nautical miles measured from the low-water line.  This makes it difficult for Sarawak to ask for more oil and gas royalty from PETRONAS.

Another issue of concern is to note that the recent Budget 2017 only has enough allocation to repair and upgrade only 30 out of 183 most dilapidated schools in the state.

Sarawak cannot be poor because the state is blessed with rich resources, oil, gas, timber and palm oil. Oil and gas are the state’s wealth and should rightfully belong to the people of Sarawak.

Another concern that the party should be aware of is the effort some political parties and religious extremists in Malaya wanting to introduce the Hudud Law thus removing the country’s secular status. The party should continue to be very firm and stand totally against the implementation of Hudud Law.

With the Malaysia Agreement 1963, control over immigration in Sarawak and can ban such religious extremists and influences from entering the state. The Sarawak Government has been consistent in exercising this absolute discretion. This is important that those extremists should not enter Sarawak and disturb the peace, unity and harmony that the state have been enjoying.

In order to continue to move forward, members are reminded that they should believe in the three core values important to the Party – these are Loyalty, Unity and Discipline.

SUPP had gone through a very difficult and challenging time but with a higher sense of loyalty and unity among members, it will not only assist in the winning of future elections, and get more support from the people, but to come back stronger than before.

24 Nov 2016