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Sunday, October 31, 2010

Kit Siang tells Batu Sapi: No change for Sabah without change in Putrajaya

KUALA LUMPUR - DAP adviser Lim Kit Siang emphasised today the importance of the Batu Sapi by-elections, claiming that only Pakatan Rakyat (PR) could offer Sabah the dire need of change.

“It will have a large implication... it will be a preview to the federal change of power,” the Ipoh-Timur MP told The Malaysian Insider over the phone.

“What this by-election means, is for the first time the people of Sabah in a by-election will be voting for national change,” the federal lawmaker said, confident that if the opposition coalition wins the Batu Sapi parliamentary seat, chances of winning the next general election will be much higher.

He claimed that it is not possible for a “real change” in Sabah change without a national change in government.

“The significance and implications of this Batu Sapi election, this message can be sent out to the voters. I believe the majority of the voters will see the importance... if Pakatan Rakyat wins, there is a possibility of change.

“If SAPP wins, then it will only be a localised state affair,” the veteran leader said.

Prior to the start of the Batu Sapi campaign, both PKR and SAPP were at loggerheads over who should field a candidate to represent the opposition front and ensure a straight fight with the Barisan Nasional.

Despite talks, SAPP, represented by Datuk Yong Teck Lee who is now a candidate, insisted on fielding one of its own, refusing to give in to PKR’s cajoling. PKR had reportedly even urged SAPP to join the PR pact and pledged to back the party during the campaign, but Yong, a former chief minister in Sabah, refused to back down.

As a result, both parties have fielded candidates — Yong, from SAPP, and Ansari Abdullah of PKR — to fight against BN’s Datin Linda Tsen Thau Lin, who is said to be the favourite in the race.

Both PKR and SAPP will battle it out with BN come polling day this November 4.

The fight has been described as a sink-or-swim contest for SAPP and one that would be a clear indication of what would happen in the 13th general election.

The seat, comprising 25,582 voters, fell vacant following the death of Tsen’s late husband, Datuk Edmund Chong Ket Wah during a biking accident on October 9.

Chong had won the seat with a 3,708-vote majority over independent Chung On Wing in Elections 2008. - Malaysian Insider

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